The electric cooperative Member Loyalty Index (MLI) originated from two co-op communications leaders seeking ways to better align their co-ops’ offerings with what their members wanted. They came across a study that was used as a basis for the first MLI survey, which looked at three variables to see which had the biggest impact on member loyalty: financial value, service value, and emotional attachment. In the end, emotional attachment proved to be the biggest predictor of a member’s loyalty.

Today, nearly 60 electric co-ops in 18 states have adopted the MLI, according to NRECA Market Research Services. It consists of four measures of a member’s emotional attachment to the co-op: perception of the co-op as a partner, alignment with co-op policies and procedures, personal relationship with the co-op, and pride in association with the co-op. The value of the MLI is not just as a benchmark of loyalty, but also to provide insight into what programs and services have the most impact on it, allowing cooperatives to prioritize activities. For example, when a cooperative chooses to partner with a service provider, it is important that its members relate that partnership to these emotional attachment measures.

HomeServe is a leading provider of utility-sponsored home protection solutions, with over 1,200 utility and municipal partners. Cooperatives choose to partner with HomeServe because our solutions, which support members in their homes, closely align with the MLI’s emotional attachment measures. In addition to safeguarding homeowners against unforeseen repair expenses and enhancing resiliency and safety, the HomeServe partnership supports the community and local economy.

All work is performed by local trade allies, which increases opportunities for local contractors, and partner cooperatives have access to the HomeServe Cares Foundation, which offers pro bono repairs for low-income citizens, support for veterans, and funding for community programs. Josh Cleveland, Key Accounts Manager, EnergyUnited, recently connected with HomeServe Cares for a member—an elderly couple in dire need of an electrical panel repair. Hear his story below.

HomeServe is also proud to participate in the recently launched Cooperative Family Fund as a founding donor. This fund supports children of electric cooperative employees when they experience the loss of a parent while actively employed at a cooperative.

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