The MVP Group of Companies is accelerating paperless transactions and contactless journeys in its various businesses, in a bid to keep people safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.
These companies include the country’s largest and only fully integrated telco PLDT and its wireless subsidiary Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart), Manila Electric Co. (Meralco), and Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC).
“As we help build the New Normal, we also continue to look for ways to serve our customers better. Minimizing face-to-face interactions, particularly in payments, not only helps curb the virus, but also facilitates smooth, seamless and convenient customer experience,” businessman Manuel V. Pangilinan said.
Digital payments for PLDT, Smart
PLDT and Smart are encouraging subscribers to shift to paperless transactions and use expanded digital payment channels and online billing services, as well as enroll to receive electronic statements.
To date, customer payments via PLDT-Smart’s digital channels have jumped three-fold compared to last year, particularly after many parts of the country were placed under quarantine in mid-March of this year.
Smart Postpaid customers can pay their bills via the unique Smart Pay Express Link in their monthly billing SMS or log on to my.smart.com.ph using their My Smart account. Meanwhile, PLDT customers can go to https://pldthome.com/paymentcenters.
Customers can also enroll their postpaid account in their credit card’s auto-debit feature or use the bills payment services of their respective banks. They may also drop by the nearest accredited partner establishments, like 7-Eleven, The SM Store, Robinsons, Bayad Center, Cebuana Lhuillier, ECPay, and others, to pay their bills.
Subscribers can also download and use digital payments app PayMaya to pay their Smart Postpaid bill or buy load for their devices. PayMaya is currently offering a P50 rebate for PLDT, Smart and Sun postpaid accounts until Dec 31. Customers can also purchase call, text, and data credits online via the Smart Online Store, and official platforms such as Lazada, Shopee, Grab, and others.
Meralco paperless billing, Bayad Center
Customers of Meralco can likewise opt to receive their monthly electric bills electronically instead of paper bills for accessibility, convenience and ease of payment. With Paperless Billing, customers can access their monthly bills via email or through their Meralco Online account.
To pay their bills, Meralco customers can pay via Meralco Online, an online facility launched by Meralco to allow customers to conveniently and digitally transact with Meralco. Meralco Online is accessible through their website at https://www.meralco.com.ph/. Customers can also pay via the Meralco Mobile App, which is available for both Android and iOS phones.
Customers can use credit, debit and prepaid cards (PayMaya, Smart Money and GCash) powered by Mastercard, VISA, or JCB to pay their bills via Meralco Online.
In addition to payments/paperless billing, Meralco Online also handles Service Applications, Concerns/Inquiries, and Outage reporting . It also has an outage map where customers can see forced and pre-arranged outages as well as affected areas and estimated time of restoration. Meralco Online also provides Energy Efficiency Tips for consumers.
Meanwhile, Bayad Center’s digitalization is “on full throttle” with innovations and partnerships to support a seamless onsite and online payment experience. Bayad Center is expanding its API portfolio to bring in more billers into the network and empower fintech companies’ access to bills payment. Bayad Center is also making #TatakSigurado payments accessible to every Filipino home through its huge network of branches and authorized partners, as well as powering the bills payment feature of leading digital payment apps.
RFID for MPTC
MPTC, on the other hand, is transitioning to electronic toll collection system in compliance with the Department of Transportation’s directives, with its lanes on its expressways in North Luzon, Central Luzon, and South Luzon undergoing progressive conversion to make them RFID-enabled by November 2020.
Minimizing physical contact and going cashless in toll roads has become an urgent priority amid COVID-19, making the the use of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) as a payment option, which allows for contactless passage through the toll plazas, all the more relevant.
According to Roberto V. Bontia, President and General Manager of MPT South Corporation and MPTC’s RFID 100 Task Force Head, some segments of MPTC expressways have gradually implemented the progressive conversion drive, and that around 75% of these lanes are already RFID-enabled.
Recently, the Philippine Arena toll plaza, Lawang Bato Northbound Entry, and expansion lanes in Balintawak and Bocaue toll plazas in NLEX have been converted into exclusive RFID lanes. CALAX also opened 100% RFID interchanges in Laguna Boulevard and Laguna Technopark in Biñan City, Laguna.
Maynilad My Water Bill
Meanwhile, Maynilad customers who wish to view their e-SOA (electronic Statement of Account) can enroll in Maynilad’s “My Water Bill” Online Portal.
The company is also rolling out internal process enhancements to improve customer experience, including the automation of Zone Accounts Management System (ZAMS), which can analyze sudden increases in customers’ water consumption patterns, and prompt Maynilad to proactively investigate, and an Automated Customer Communication (ACC) Project, which entails the automatic dissemination of near real-time water service interruption advisories to affected customers.
Maynilad is also equipping their Zone Specialists with tablets that are integrated to the Workflow Management System (WMS) to allow them to process applications, create tickets for requests, and address complaints and inquiries onsite.