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  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 10 SKILLS AND TRAINING NEEDS OF FRONTLINE MANAGERS AT INDIAN POWER DISTRIBUTION COMPANIES – A PERSPECTIVE OF ELECTRICITY CUSTOMERS SURESH VISHWAKARMA PhD Scholar, College of Management & Economics Studies, University of Petroleum & Energy Studies, India ALKA DWIVEDI Assistant Professor, College of Management & Economics Studies, University of Petroleum & Energy Studies, India ABSTRACT The present paper attempts to identify the perception of different categories of electricity customers on the job performance and training requirements of frontline managers in the lately formed power distribution companies. In order to study this phenomenon a questionnaire was prepared and checked for its reliability and validity. 500 completed responses were collected from DISCOMs’ customers at the response rate of 68%. Cronbach’s Alpha’ value of 0.965 in the pilot study confirmed internal consistency (reliability) of data. Data Analysis reflected the index of customers’ perception on 30 attributes associated with the performance and corresponding training requirement of frontline managers. The results of the study can contribute in understanding customers’ perception on various attributes associated with the performance and training needs of frontline managers at power distribution companies (DISCOMs). Replication of the study in different companies and regions can help in overcoming the culture specificity and customers’ bias which may have affected the results of the study. Key words: Electricity customers, frontline managers, power distribution companies, training, and performance. 1. INTRODUCTION Electricity supply has now become a basic necessity in everybody’s life. Its presence only makes our daily routine easy and also ensures many modern life support systems. Even the slum dwellers now expect to have electricity supply at least for some part of the day. Any unplanned, unexpected, or prolonged outage of electricity supply now-a-days can lead to social unrest (Foss, 2012). INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF MARKETING AND HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT (IJMHRM) ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print) ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online) Volume 5, Issue 2, March – April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME: www.iaeme.com/ijmhrm.asp Journal Impact Factor (2014): 4.7830 (Calculated by GISI) www.jifactor.com IJMHRM © I A E M E
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 11 Frontline managers play a very significant role in the power distribution companies (DISCOMs). They act as an inter-face between the customers / public and the company. Frontline Managers in power distribution companies are the mainly field officers – Assistant Engineers and Junior Engineers posted at Operation & Maintenance offices in the town, sub-urban, and rural area. They interact with the public, authorities, and different categories of customers on almost daily basis. Subsequent to the Northern and Eastern Grid failure in July 2012, Central Electricity Supply Utility of Orissa CESU sources estimated that the undeclared load has gone up by around 20 per cent in those past few days. "This is because hundreds of air-conditioners and air coolers were installed by people to get respite from the scorching heat. However, very few people had actually announced these additions," (Sahoo, 2012). The load demand of customers has increased considerably in the past years. A considerable part of that is undeclared especially during peak winter and summer seasons. The concern here is if all electricity customers are aware of declaring any additional load to their installation before the utility provider. Have SEBs / DISCOMs educated them enough on the duties and responsibilities of an electricity customer. In the ongoing scenario, customers’ satisfaction is the key to success of any business. Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, once said, “It is our job to know what our customers want.” Electricity customers cannot be left alone. They not only anticipate much better services but also expect DISCOMs to understand how their needs have changed with the passage of time and how best their reasonable expectations should be met. Power sector reforms in most of the developing countries including India are still breezing their implementation phase and the process are likely to continue till their aimed objectives is met. Frontline managers are now assigned with the responsibilities of playing changed role as per their redesigned jobs. 2. OBJECTIVES AND IMPORTANCE OF THE STUDY The main objective of the study was to understand customers’ perception on various attributes associated with the performance and training needs of frontline managers at DISCOMs. To achieve the main objective, the following sub-objectives were set: 1. To get customers’ overall view on the performance and training requirements of frontline managers. 2. To analyze customers’ perception on technical skills of frontline managers. 3. To analyze customers’ perception on commercial, managerial, public relations, and customer care skills of frontline managers. There are several areas related to work-performance of frontline managers demanding further study and research. From a practical perspective, researchers intend to use the results of this study to identify the various factors perceived by electricity customers that contribute to the performance of frontline managers at the newly formed power distribution companies subsequent to reforms in the Indian power sector. 3. LITERATURE REVIEW The review of related literature leads to the assumption that customers’ perception on the performance of DISCOMs’ frontline line managers differ on degree and scale along the different variables which contribute to effective customer services. Upon introducing reforms in the Indian power sector, the change management is successfully ongoing. A sense of belongingness is being developed among the human capital (IGNOU, 2007). Lately formed DISCOMs are trying to gain confidence of existing employees by assuring employees-friendly policies. Management is stressing on promoting in-house training programmes on quality, skills and technical management to focus on customer satisfaction. The management
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 12 however still faces the challenges of changing the mind-set of employees from the arrogance of monopoly status to politeness in competitive business environment continue to be a great challenge (IGNOU, 2007). More progressive personnel policies and employment conditions are being explored to attract and retain highly skilled staff and providing incentives for constantly upgrading their skills. Scott Anthony, author of The Little Black Book Of Innovation: How It Works, How to Do It, states in his article “3 Ways To Predict What Consumers Want Before They Know It”, that a careful study of current and potential customers can often highlight the workarounds that customers create to make up for the limits of existing solutions. Going deep into these compensating behaviours can help to uncover innovation opportunities. Spending time with the customers, watching for the workarounds, and exploring non-consumption helps in highlighting exciting innovation opportunities (Anthony, 2012) The key findings of the survey conducted among the electricity consumers of Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) / Mahavitaran by Marketing and Development Research Associates (MDRA) in 2012 to assess the level of awareness of consumer’s rights and consumer grievance redressal mechanism revealed that mere 1% of the electricity customers are aware of Electricity Act and Electricity Consumer’s Rights. Almost 75% of the electricity consumers had faced the problems related to their electricity connection. They also had a high proportion of complaints related to inflated / excess billing, voltage fluctuation and interruption/ failure/ disconnection of electric supply. Majority of the electricity consumers did not receive the complaint number after registration of their complaints. Less than 50% of the complainants were satisfied with the resolution of their complaints by MSEDCL staff. A postgraduate student of a Noida based management institution in India has stated in his summer training report on “Market Research on Consumers Expectations from Power Distribution Companies in Delhi” that the asset of any organization is its customer base so it is very important to realize the marketing effectiveness in satisfying consumers’ needs and wants as the profit of any company depending on a deeper understanding of consumers’ behaviour. The lately formed DISCOMs had never faced these issues in the past since erstwhile State Electricity Boards were operating in the monopolistic scenario. In the changing scenario, competitive markets have emerged and the consumers now have choice to change their service providers. Under such situation, only the more competitive player would remain in the race. (Bhatia, 2010) An article in McKinsey Quarterly journal points out insufficient training as the reason for low manager performance. Its authors believe that most companies don't offer adequate training to their frontline managers or structure their roles to create the most value. Aggravating the problem, senior leaders are often unaware of the issues that hinder frontline performance (McGurk, Smet and Vinson, 2010) The article underlines insufficient training as a contributing factor for impeded performance of managers and alarms organization’s senior leaders to be aware of frontline’s needs. The scenario at the power distribution companies is more or less similar. A paper titled “Introducing Electric Power into a Multidisciplinary Curriculum for Network Industries” (Ilic, Apt, Khosla, Lave, Morgan and Talukdar 2003) states that engineers of future will have to be able to do everything that engineers do today – and much more. They will have to design, build and operate generators, transmission & distribution lines, manage the networks for reliable operations, and do all this safely and with security against attack designed in from the outset. They will have to do this within an environment which is much less friendly and forgiving than the environment which their predecessors faced. In addition, each decision on new capacity and operations will have to be made with a view to its costs and expected revenues. A study on Satisfaction & Preferences of Electricity Consumers was conducted by pManifold (2011) in nine districts of central India. The major factors included were power quality & reliability, customer service, meter, billing & payment and communication etc. The findings revealed that until now very little effort has been made to objectively understand and consider the voice of the customer while making efforts to improve the utility's services and performance. Most respondents opined that
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 13 they are expecting a lot to be done before they are satisfied with the utility services. The study concluded that immediately attending to the customer's key areas of dissatisfaction would result in quick wins for the utility and allow for building up a positive perception within the minds of all stakeholders (including customer, opinion leaders, employees etc) and make them ready for bigger changes. The intense literature review was also supported with the inferences drawn from interactive conversations with DISCOMs’ frontline managers and their superiors. 4. METHODOLOGY OF RESEARCH The study started with intense literature review of work done on manpower training in power sector before and after the power sector reforms in India. Due to limited research done in training in general and performance management in particular, only few papers were available in public domain. Variables were extracted from the published literature on customers’ expectation from utility companies and their perception on DISCOMs’ frontline managers. Discussions were undertaken with the different categories of electricity customers. Based upon the review of literature and discussions with the customers, a list of 32 statements was screened out. Most of the statements were related on technical, commercial, managerial, customer care, and public relations skills of frontline managers. This study was based on primary data gathered with the help of a questionnaire comprising two sections. Section A collected demographic details of respondents. It also recorded the satisfaction level of respondents with the performance and training requirements of DISCOMs’ frontline managers on a scale of 1 – 10. Section B had 32 scale items on customers’ perception on the technical, commercial, managerial, customer care, and public relations skills of frontline managers. First 2 items questioned change in customer’s electricity consumption and expectation from DISCOM in the past years. The responses were collected on a five point Likert Scale where 1 represented ‘Strongly Disagree’, 2 represented ‘Disagree’, 3= ‘Undecided’, 4= ‘Agree’ and 5= ‘Strongly Agree’. The questionnaire designed for customers’ group was mailed / distributed to almost 800 customers of lately formed DISCOMs. Even though electricity customers’ population is infinite, the study was concentrated in two states in central India where DISCOMs are operational for more than 5 years. Since electricity customers have infinite population, a sample size of 500 customers was considered as a close replica of large customer base as per the published tables. Total 543 customers responded after continual follow up by emails and phone calls. The response rate was approx. 68%. Out of the 543 responses received, 43 were incomplete hence were rejected. Finally 500 complete responses were included in the study. The data gathered were analyzed with actual counts, percentages, correlations, standard deviations, factor analysis, variance, and mean scores. Actual counts and percentages were used to assess the frequency and percentage extent of certain variables related to general and background information. Correlations were used to assess the relationships of age of respondents and their satisfaction with frontline managers’ skills and training needs. Standard deviations were calculated to understand the variations in data collected through responses. Factor analysis was used to reduce the data collected on the four-point scale for further analysis. Means were helpful in explaining the extent of customers’ agreement or disagreement on the technical, commercial, managerial, customer care, and public relations skills of DISCOMs’ frontline managers. Reliability of the data collected was also calculated by applying the Cronbach Alpha. Alpha value of the scale of 30 variables was calculated that was as high as 0.965.
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 14 5. SAMPLE AND DATA COLLECTION Questionnaires were distributed and responses from invited from customers at different categories of customers. No preference whatsoever to any particular category of customers was given to ensure an overall and fair perception of customers’ population. Pilot study was carried out on 53 (around 10%) complete questionnaires to test the feasibility. Cronbach’s Alpha value for the 32 variables in Section B of 53 questionnaires was 0.965. Values of Cronbach’s alpha range from 0 to 1.00 with those close to 1.00 indicate high consistency. Acceptable Cronbach's alpha values range from 0.70 to 0.95 (Tavakol & Dennick, 2011). High-stakes standardized tests should have internal consistency coefficients of minimum 0.90 (Wells & Wollack, 2003). The Cronbach Alpha determined for the study was therefore acceptable confirming internal consistency (reliability) of data for this group. 6. DATA ANALYSIS Demographic information of 500 Customers who completely responded to the questionnaire is tabulated in Table 1 Table 1: Demographic Profile Sr. Variable N=500 Percentage I Category Domestic 332 66.4 Commercial 98 19.6 Industrial 25 5 Agriculture 28 5.6 Others 17 3.4 II Age of Respondent 20 – 30 106 21.2 31 – 40 149 29.8 41 – 50 130 26 Above 51 115 23 III Gender Male 459 91.8 Female 41 8.2 IV Education level Below Graduate 57 11.4 Graduate 272 54.4 Master and above 171 34.2 Testing of hypothesis on customers’ responses was carried out assuming values for null and alternate hypothesis. The responses were collected on a five point Likert Scale where 1 represented ‘Strongly Disagree’, 2 represented ‘Disagree’, 3= ‘Undecided’, 4= ‘Agree’ and 5= ‘Strongly Agree’. The mean response of 4 points and greater was an indicative of customers’ full agreement on the statement. However the mean response lesser than 4 indicates that a part of the customers’ population did not agree with the respective statement. An assumed mean value of ≥ 4 (Agree) was therefore considered for the responses to test the null hypothesis H0. Null hypothesis H0: µ ≥ 4 Alternative hypothesis H1: < 4
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 15 With the null hypothesis H0: µ ≥ 4, the critical region is in the left tail. With a left-tail area of 0.05 the critical value is z = – 1.645. The critical value is used to set up the critical region. As mentioned earlier, the first two statements in the questionnaire questioned change in customer’s electricity consumption and expectations from DISCOM in the last few years. Their responses were separately analyzed. The corresponding values of t for the remaining 30 variables calculated using SPSS is lower than – 1.645 (Table 2) which are in the left of the critical value. Hence, the test statistic is in the rejection region, which means that the null hypothesis is rejected. Since the null hypothesis is rejected, the alternate hypothesis is supported confirming that the mean response is less than 4 and a large number of customers do not agree with many statements. FLMs are the Frontline Managers including Junior Engineers, Assistant Engineers, and Assistant Executive Engineers at DISCOMs. Table 2: One-Sample Statistics Sr. Question(s) N Mean SD Std. Error Mean t 1 Frontline Managers (FLMs) at the DISCOM’s office in your area understand your needs and expectations. 500 2.97 1.189 .053 -19.408 2 FLMs adequately advise you on your electrical installation and any shortcomings in that. 500 2.65 1.234 .055 -24.464 3 FLMs adequately educate you on the safety issues related to your installation. 500 2.68 1.244 .056 -23.687 4 FLMs adequately advise you on energy efficiency measures in your installations. 500 2.72 1.260 .056 -22.678 5 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on the different categories and slabs of electricity tariffs in-force. 500 2.92 1.335 .060 -18.025 6 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on the responsibilities of electricity customers. 500 2.72 1.310 .059 -21.786 7 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on the penalties for indulging in theft of electricity. 500 2.89 1.402 .063 -17.770 8 FLMs adequately educate you on the disadvantages of having low power factor in your installation 500 2.69 1.333 .060 -22.000 9 FLMs adequately educate you on the disadvantages of having unbalanced load in your installation 500 2.73 1.439 .064 -19.795 10 FLMs adequately educate you on the benefits of using energy efficient appliances in your installation. 500 2.62 1.359 .061 -22.644 11 FLMs explain the role of Bureau of Energy Efficiency and other Government’s initiatives to help customers. 500 2.66 1.402 .063 -21.379 12 FLMs reflect creativity in their work in understanding and resolving customers’ problems. 500 2.99 1.215 .054 -18.510 13 FLMs are equally commercial in their approach as they are technical at work. 500 3.18 1.126 .050 -16.247 14 FLMs are capable of positively influencing you to be a loyal and responsible customer of DISCOM. 500 2.87 1.452 .065 -17.373 15 FLMs have unbiased approach towards customers and show genuine interest in them. 500 2.79 1.286 .058 -21.043 16 FLMs track your pending grievances / issues and follow up enough to address them. 500 2.73 1.360 .061 -20.885 17 FLMs put effort to improve the lethargic attitude of their staff to ensure quality services to you. 500 2.92 .963 .043 -25.076 18 FLMs are putting enough efforts to reduce supply outage in their area. 500 3.23 1.076 .048 -16.039 19 FLMs are putting enough efforts to increase DISCOM’s revenue. 500 3.37 .905 .040 -15.460 20 Good communication and public relations skills are mandatory to perform FLMs’ job at DISCOMs. 500 3.86 1.351 .060 -2.318 21 FLMs are cost conscious enough in their work and providing services to customers. 500 2.97 1.242 .056 -18.509 22 FLMs possess enough skills to promptly resolve your services and bills related grievances. 500 3.16 1.240 .055 -15.105 23 FLMs demonstrate trust and empathy in listening to your facts and understand feelings. 500 3.04 1.248 .056 -17.270 24 FLMs are adequately motivated and professional to make DISCOM progress and serve you better. 500 3.19 1.019 .046 -17.686
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 16 25 FLMs are capable enough to identify customers’ issues and conclude as much as possible from information available. 500 3.08 1.322 .059 -15.596 26 FLMs are capable to develop deep collaborative relations between DISCOM and customers to create win-win situation. 500 3.10 1.047 .047 -19.221 27 FLMs are thorough and precise in approaching DISCOM’s work and their personal activities? 500 3.14 .987 .044 -19.402 28 FLMs try to build DISCOM a customer friendly company with good image in general public. 500 3.09 1.193 .053 -17.024 29 FLMs are sensitive in dealing with you and refrain from any kind of unpleasing behaviour. 500 2.78 1.304 .058 -20.850 30 FLMs have team spirit and fellowship at their workplace to serve you better. 500 3.18 1.094 .049 -16.681 The highest mean value of 3.86 in Table 2 for mandatory good communication and public relations skills confirm that customers perceive this skill most important skill to perform frontline managers’ job. Their perception on this attribute further supports one of the objectives of Ministry of Power and USAID’s joint Distribution Reform, Upgrades and Management (DRUM) Project. The mean values around 3 for 11 attributes further confirms that many customers are still undecided on Frontline managers being equally commercial and technical in their approach, putting enough efforts to reduce supply outage, increasing DISCOMs’ revenue, resolving services and bills related grievances, having team spirit, developing collaborative relations between DISCOM and customers, and few more attributes. As discussed in the National Conference on Demand Side Management, 2012, DISCOMs’ frontline line managers should be able to educate customers on the benefits of using energy efficient appliances in their installation. The lowest mean (2.62) however shows that customers do not perceive this attribute as important. Also the lowest Standard Deviation 0.905 indicates that customers are not much concerned if DISCOMs’ Frontline Managers are putting enough efforts to increase company’s revenue”. A high standard deviation shows that the data is widely spread. As seen in the Table 2, the standard deviation of 1.4 and higher of the under-mentioned 4 attributes of frontline managers shows that customers are somewhat dubious on these attributes. i. FLMs adequately advise and educate on penalties for indulging in theft of electricity. ii. FLMs adequately educate on the disadvantages of having unbalanced load in installation. iii. FLMs educate on Bureau of Energy Efficiency and other Government’s initiatives to help customers. iv. FLMs are capable of positively influencing to be a loyal and responsible customer of DISCOM. Factor analysis was then applied to summarize the original variables into a smaller set of composite factors. This technique finds relationships or natural connections where variables are maximally correlated with one another and minimally correlated with other variables and then groups the variables accordingly. The analysis helped in data reduction by grouping scale items into a few manageable factors and further development of scales to measure job satisfaction. The first two statements in the Section B of questionnaire were not attributes but customers’ global perception on their changed electricity consumption and consequent expectations from DISCOMs’ Frontline Managers. Responses to the first 2 statements were used to establish a general observation about the customers’ population and its potential impact on DISCOMs operations and frontline management. The remaining 30 statements (from Sr. 3 onwards) were considered for factor analysis. The initial output from the analysis is a table of descriptive statistics for all the variables under investigation. Typically the mean, standard deviation and number of respondents (N) who had responded to the questionnaire are given. Before proceeding for further factor analysis, appropriateness of factor analysis was assessed by examining sampling adequacy through Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin (KMO) statistic. KMO and Bartlett’s Test measure strength of relationship among the variables. The KMO measures the sample adequacy
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 17 which should be greater than 0.6 for a satisfactory factor analysis to proceed (Kaiser and Rice 1974). If any pair has a value less than this, we consider dropping one of them from analysis. The off- diagonal elements should all be very small (close to zero) in a good model. Looking at the Table 3, the KMO measure is 0.874 which is very good. Table 3: KMO and Bartlett's Test Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin Measure of Sampling Adequacy. .874 Bartlett's Test of Sphericity Approx. Chi-Square 13822.425 df (Degrees of freedom) 435 Sig. (Significance) .000 Bartlett test results show that the values are significant and thus acceptable. It tests the null hypothesis that the correlation matrix is an identity matrix. An identity matrix is a matrix in which all of the diagonals are 1 and all off-diagonal elements are 0. We want to reject this null hypothesis. As per the process of a factor analysis prescribed by Hair, Black, Babin, Anderson, and Tatham in their book Multivariate Data Analysis (2006), a statistically significant Bartlett’s test of sphericity (significant level < .05) confirms sufficient correlations among the variables to proceed. The degrees of freedom (df) tells how many numbers in the grid are actually independent. The table also indicates that significance level is less than .001, which is small enough to reject null hypothesis. Bartlett’s test of sphericity in this study is therefore significant and thus acceptable. Table 4 shows the correlation between age of customers and their perception towards FLMs’ technical skills, commercial skills and training requirement. Table 4: Correlation between Customers’ age and their satisfaction with FLM’s skills Age Satisfaction with FLM’s technical skills Satisfaction with FLM’s commercial skills FLMs’ need further training Age 1 Satisfaction with FLM’s technical skills. -.032 1 Satisfaction with FLM’s commercial skills -.068 .745** 1 FLMs’ need further training -.085 -.116** -.038 1 **. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed). The negative correlation values confirm that senior group of customers and not much satisfied with frontline managers’ technical and commercial skills. Moreover they strongly believe that frontline managers need further training. The correlation of 0.745 between commercial and technical skills confirms that customers of all age groups expect frontline managers to possess both skills. The correlation values further indicate customers stressing training needs of frontline managers more on commercial skills in comparison to technical skills. The items were then subjected to Principal Component Analysis with Varimax rotation and Kaiser Normalization. Eigenvalues are most commonly reported in factor analyses. They are calculated and used in deciding how many factors to extract in the overall factor analysis. The factors having eigenvalues greater than one were retained in this study. In matrix algebra, under certain conditions, matrices can be diagonalized. Matrices are often diagonalized in multivariate analyses. In that process, eigenvalues are used to consolidate the variance (Brown, 2001). In factor analysis, eigenvalues are used to condense the variance in a correlation matrix. "The factor with the largest eigenvalue has the most variance and so on, down to factors with small or negative eigenvalues that are usually omitted from solutions" (Tabachnick and
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 18 Fidell, 1996). From the analyst's perspective, only variables with eigenvalues of 1.00 or higher are traditionally considered worth analyzing. However, examining a scree plot, analyzing non-trivial variance, and using a theory-based approach can provide overriding reasons for selecting other numbers of factors (Gorsuch, 1983). Table 5 shows all the factors extractable from the analysis along with their eigenvalues. The percentage of variance attributable to each factor and the cumulative variance of the factor and the previous factors are also included. It is noticed that the first factor accounts for 44.9% of the variance, the second 12.7%. All the remaining factors are not significant. All the items had factor loadings above 0.45 (Hair, Anderson, Tatham, & Black 1995) except the last variable – “FLMs have team spirit and fellowship at their workplace to serve customers better. Table 5: Total Variance Explained Component Initial Eigenvalues Extraction Sums of Squared Loadings Rotation Sums of Squared Loadings Total % of Variance Cum. % Total % of Variance Cum. % Total % of Variance Cum. % 1 13.481 44.936 44.936 13.481 44.936 44.936 8.349 27.831 27.831 2 3.832 12.775 57.710 3.832 12.775 57.710 5.081 16.936 44.767 3 1.770 5.901 63.611 1.770 5.901 63.611 5.047 16.822 61.589 4 1.428 4.760 68.371 1.428 4.760 68.371 2.035 6.782 68.371 5 .955 3.182 71.553 6 .900 2.999 74.552 7 .756 2.521 77.074 8 .732 2.440 79.514 9 .616 2.054 81.568 10 .560 1.865 83.434 11 .491 1.638 85.071 12 .445 1.482 86.554 13 .407 1.358 87.912 14 .384 1.279 89.191 15 .372 1.241 90.432 16 .342 1.140 91.572 17 .318 1.062 92.634 18 .305 1.018 93.652 19 .272 .907 94.560 20 .247 .824 95.384 21 .241 .803 96.187 22 .201 .670 96.857 23 .192 .639 97.496 24 .165 .549 98.045 25 .146 .485 98.530 26 .121 .404 98.934 27 .116 .386 99.320 28 .096 .319 99.639 29 .067 .223 99.862 30 .041 .138 100.000 Extraction Method: Principal Component Analysis. Table 6 of communalities shows how much of the variance in the variables has been accounted for by the extracted factors.
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 19 Table 6: Communalities Sr. Item Extraction 1 FLMs at the DISCOM’s office in your area understand your needs and expectations. .602 2 FLMs adequately advise you on your electrical installation and any shortcomings in that. .635 3 FLMs adequately educate you on the safety issues related to your installation. .686 4 FLMs adequately advise you on energy efficiency measures in your installations. .753 5 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on the different categories and slabs of electricity tariffs in- force. .624 6 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on the responsibilities of electricity customers. .831 7 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on the penalties for indulging in theft of electricity. .561 8 FLMs adequately educate you on the disadvantages of having low power factor in your installation .612 9 FLMs adequately educate you on the disadvantages of having unbalanced load in your installation .636 10 FLMs adequately educate you on the benefits of using energy efficient appliances in your installation. .727 11 FLMs educate you on the role of Bureau of Energy Efficiency and other Government’s initiatives to help customers. .663 12 FLMs reflect creativity in their work in understanding and resolving customers’ problems. .702 13 FLMs are equally commercial in their approach as they are technical at work. .641 14 FLMs are capable of positively influencing you to be a loyal and responsible customer of DISCOM. .734 15 FLMs have unbiased approach towards customers and show genuine interest in them. .684 16 FLMs track your pending grievances / issues and follow up enough to address them. .723 17 FLMs put effort to improve the lethargic attitude of their staff to ensure quality services to you. .698 18 FLMs are putting enough efforts to reduce supply outage in their area. .700 19 FLMs are putting enough efforts to increase DISCOM’s revenue. .387 20 Good communication and public relations skills are mandatory to perform FLMs’ job at DISCOMs. .677 21 FLMs are cost conscious enough in their work and providing services to customers. .643 22 FLMs possess enough skills to promptly resolve your services and bills related grievances. .790 23 FLMs demonstrate trust and empathy in listening to your facts and understand feelings. .742 24 FLMs are adequately motivated and professional to make DISCOM progress and serve you better. .757 25 FLMs are capable enough to identify customers’ issues and conclude as much as possible from information available. .743 26 FLMs are capable to develop deep collaborative relations between DISCOM and customers to create win-win situation. .532 27 FLMs are thorough and precise in approaching DISCOM’s work and their personal activities? .717 28 FLMs try to build DISCOM a customer friendly company with good image in general public. .729 29 FLMs are sensitive in dealing with you and refrain from any kind of unpleasing behaviour. .790 30 FLMs have team spirit and fellowship at their workplace to serve you better. .788 As seen in the Table 6, Most of them are greater than 5 confirming that variance in the variables have been largely accounted for by extracted factors. It further suggested that the data set is appropriate (Stewart 1981). For instance over 83% of the variance in customers’ perception on FLMs capabilities to adequately advise and educate them on the responsibilities of electricity customers is accounted for while 38% of the variance in FLMs enough efforts to increase DISCOM’s revenue is accounted for. The only variable with extraction value 0.387 (below 0.5) is inappropriate and therefore rejected. Rotated Component (Factor) Matrix was carried out. The idea of rotation is to reduce the number factors on which the variables under investigations have high loading. Rotation does not actually change anything but makes the interpretation of the analysis easier. The rotation of factors converged in 6 iterations. As apparent from Table 7, eight variables are loaded on Educating Customers, 11 variables are loaded on Customer Services, 8 variables are loaded on Management Skills and only two variables are loaded on Commercial approach. One variable – “frontline managers are putting enough effort to increase DISCOMs’ revenue” has been suppressed since its loading was less than 5. Except this particular variable, all 29 variables under the four components were further analyzed.
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 20 Table 7: Rotated Component Matrix Sr. Variable / Attribute Component 1 Customer Services 2 Mgmt. skills 3 Educating Customers 4 Comm. Approach 1 FLMs at the DISCOM’s office in your area understand your needs and expectations. .763 2 FLMs adequately advise you on your electrical installation and any shortcomings in that. .780 3 FLMs adequately educate you on the safety issues related to your installation. .800 4 FLMs adequately advise you on energy efficiency measures in your installations. .835 5 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on different categories and slabs of electricity tariffs in-force. .766 6 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on the responsibilities of electricity customers. .896 7 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on the penalties for indulging in theft of electricity. .536 8 FLMs adequately educate you on the disadvantages of having low power factor in your installation .651 9 FLMs adequately educate you on the disadvantages of having unbalanced load in your installation .671 10 FLMs adequately educate you on the benefits of using energy efficient appliances in your installation. .689 11 FLMs explain the role of Bureau of Energy Efficiency and other Government’s initiatives to help customers. .582 12 FLMs reflect creativity in their work in understanding and resolving customers’ problems. .618 13 FLMs are equally commercial in their approach as they are technical at work. .603 14 FLMs are capable of positively influencing you to be a loyal and responsible customer of DISCOM. .756 15 FLMs have unbiased approach towards customers and show genuine interest in them. .739 16 FLMs track your pending grievances / issues and follow up enough to address them. .784 17 FLMs put effort to improve the lethargic attitude of their staff to ensure quality services to you. .762 18 FLMs are putting enough efforts to reduce supply outage in their area. .614 .528 19 FLMs are putting enough efforts to increase DISCOM’s revenue. 20 Good communication and public relations skills are mandatory to perform FLMs’ job at DISCOMs. .816 21 FLMs are cost conscious enough in their work and providing services to customers. .688 22 FLMs possess enough skills to promptly resolve your services and bills related grievances. .880 23 FLMs demonstrate trust and empathy in listening to your facts and understand feelings. .636 24 FLMs are adequately motivated and professional to make DISCOM progress and serve you better. .799 25 FLMs are capable enough to identify customers’ issues and conclude as much as possible from info available. .809 26 FLMs are capable to develop deep collaborative relations between DISCOM and customers. .509 27 FLMs are thorough and precise in approaching DISCOM’s work and their personal activities .514 .534 28 FLMs try to build DISCOM a customer friendly company with good image in general public. .509 .532 29 FLMs are sensitive in dealing with you and refrain from any kind of unpleasing behaviour. .807 30 FLMs have team spirit and fellowship at their workplace to serve you better. .681 Extraction Method: Principal Component Analysis. Rotation Method: Varimax with Kaiser Normalization. a. Rotation converged in 6 iterations.
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 21 7. INTERPRETATION The results obtained clearly show that 4 major factors (Customer Services, Management Skills, Educating Customers, and Commercial Approach) have been extracted out of the total 30 factors as shown in Table 8. The factors having the Eigen value greater than 1 are considered together as 1 factor. After analyzing the various factors, from Table 8 it can be easily depicted that these 4 factors contribute 68.371% of the total variables as 68.371% of the total variance is related to these factors. Table 8: Major factors covering 30 attributes Sr. Factor Attribute(s) 1 Customer Services 1 FLMs adequately educate on disadvantages of unbalanced load. 2 FLMs adequately educate on benefits of using energy efficient appliances 3 FLMs reflect creativity in understanding & resolving customers’ problem 4 FLMs are equally commercial in their approach as they are technical. 5 FLMs are capable of positively influencing customers to be loyal and responsible. 6 FLMs have unbiased approach and show genuine interest in customers. 7 FLMs track pending grievances / issues and follow up enough to address. 8 FLMs are cost conscious enough in work and providing services. 9 FLMs possess enough skills to resolve services & bills related grievances 10 FLMs are capable to identify customers’ issues and conclude info. 11 FLMs are sensitive in dealing and refrain from unpleasing behaviour. 2 Management Skills 1 FLMs explain role of Bureau of Energy Efficiency and other Government’s initiatives to help customers. 2 FLMs improve staff’s lethargic attitude to ensure quality services. 3 FLMs are putting enough efforts to reduce supply outage in their area. 4 FLMs demonstrate trust & empathy in listening facts, understand feelings 5 FLMs are adequately motivated and professional to progress DISCOM. 6 FLMs are capable to develop collaborative relations between DISCOM. 7 FLMs try to build DISCOM customer friendly company with good image 8 FLMs have team spirit and fellowship at their workplace to serve better. 3 Educating Customers 1 FLMs at nearest DISCOM’s office understand your needs & expectation 2 FLMs adequately advise on electrical installation and any shortcomings. 3 FLMs adequately educate you on safety issues of your installation. 4 FLMs adequately advise on energy efficiency measures in installations. 5 FLMs adequately advise and educate on categories and slabs of tariffs. 6 FLMs adequately advise and educate on customers’ responsibilities. 7 FLMs adequately advise and educate you on penalties for theft. 8 FLMs adequately educate you on the disadvantages of low power factor. 4 Commercial Approach 1 Good communication and PR skills are mandatory to perform FLMs’ job. 2 FLMs are thorough and precise in approaching DISCOM’s work and personal work In order to determine the relative importance of the 4 extracted factors, they were subjected to regression analysis. For this Parsuraman, Zeithaml and Berry’s (1988) approach was followed in which the customers’ overall score on training requirements of DISCOMs’ frontline managers was considered as dependent variable and means of the 4 extracted factors were considered as independent variables (multiple regression). Table 9: Regression Analysis results for importance of extracted factors Model Unstandardized Coefficients Standardized Coefficients t Sig. Order of importance (As per Beta values) B Std. Error Beta 1 (Constant) 5.170 .192 26.899 .000 Customer Services -.130 .063 -.162 -2.086 .037 1 Management Skills -.060 .074 -.062 -.808 .420 3 Educating Customers -.131 .053 -.114 -2.480 .013 2 Commercial Approach -.001 .041 -.001 -.031 .976 4 a. Dependent Variable: Customers believe that FLM need further training
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 22 Thus the average score of the different factors was regressed on the overall customers’ perception score of FLM’s training needs (included in Section A). The beta coefficients provided the relative importance of factors. The factor with highest beta coefficient is considered to have the maximum influence on customers’ perception on FLM’s training needs while the one with the second highest beta coefficient stands second in terms of relative significance and so on. The results of multiple regression analysis are summarized in the Table 9. The results in the Table 9 can be expressed in the form of the regression equation: CP = 5.17 – 0.162(CS) – 0.062 (MS) – 0.114 (EC) +.001 (CA) The above equation shows that Customer Services outweigh other areas for training requirement of frontline managers’ training. Training on Commercial Approach is the last in order of importance at the same time is statistically insignificant. Strangely enough, the results of regression show all factors are slight negatively correlated with customers’ perception on training needs of frontline managers, which probably would be the consequence of a large number of variables. 8. DISCUSSION AND COMPARISON WITH RESULTS OF SIMILAR STUDIES Reform in power sector, just being a decade old have reflected an immense need of reorientation of work practices at the power companies. With the rapid changes in the power sector and increasing customers’ need, updating of skills and competencies of DISCOMs’ frontline managers becomes a key concern. Authors had anticipated from customers of all categories are likely to opine that their electricity consumption and expectations from power distribution companies has gone up in the recent years. The results of the study are quite up to their anticipation. The results of the study support one of the objectives of Ministry of Power and also match with the results of many similar studies. The results of this study are very much in line with those of pManifold’s study (2011) on Satisfaction & Preferences of Electricity Consumers carried out in the same regions. Most respondents (over 80%) from across different categories of customers including residential, commercial, agriculture and industrial expressed their dissatisfaction on power quality & reliability, customer service, meter, billing & payment and communication etc. Respondents gave most importance to Customer Service, Power, Quality & Reliability and Company Image. The results of this study are very much in line with those of pManifold’s study. A study on “Importance of mutual relations on customer satisfaction in industries with no / low direct contact with customers” (Ardabili, Daryani, Molaie, Rasooli and Kheiravar 2012) revealed that creation of mutual relations between customers and electricity distribution company could be of high prominence. Customers’ strong agreement on possessing good communication and public relations skills as the most required skill to perform frontline managers’ job at DISCOMs revealed in this study concurs with the findings of the above study. A survey conducted by Marketing and Development Research Associates (MDRA) in Maharashtra State included as many as 5 similar attributes its questionnaire. The views of customers in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh about DISCOMs’ frontline managers on educating them on different categories and slabs of electricity tariffs in-force, understanding and resolving their problems, tracking their pending grievances, reduce supply outage in their area, and promptly resolving their services and bills related grievances collected in this study are alike with the views of electricity customers in the above survey. Such studies can help DISCOMs’ management in setting benchmarks for innovation, passion towards learning, team player, and other soft skills while recruiting frontline managers. Frontline managers being the key position holders should be able to work in line with DISCOMs’ values. Apart from recruiting frontline manpower with the required technical base, the management need to ensure that they must also have desire to learn and fit with DISCOMs’ values. A good balance between technical skills and soft skills should be gauged at the recruiting stage itself. Management
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 23 can also explore possibilities of learning and developing skills in their frontline managers through external resources as well as neighbouring DISCOMs. 9. CONCLUSIONS This study gives an idea about how electricity customers perceives the performance level and training requirements of frontline managers (Assistant Engineers and Junior Engineers) at the lately formed power distribution companies. The study revealed that electricity customers expect DISCOMs’ frontline managers to possess high customer care skills in addition to expertise in technical and commercial areas. The customers believe that frontline managers need to be trained on customer care and educating users on energy conservation, safety, and efficient usage of energy. They should also keep customers’ informed of Government’s various initiatives for the benefit of customers. The performance of the frontline managers is subject to several variables both intrinsic and extrinsic. Ensuring a conducive, cordial, and harmonious work environment to the frontline managers contributes positively to their individual performance and virtually the overall organizational performance and business results. The study indicated that training requirement of DISCOMs’ frontline managers in Customer Services outweigh other areas followed by training them in educating customers on different issues related to their installation, consumption, safety, and billing. Training frontline managers in management skills and developing commercial approach are also important areas for training them. The results of the study are as good as the results of a simple gap analysis at frontline management level. It gives an idea of customers’ perception on the current skill level of DISCOMs’ frontline management, especially what functions do they need to perform that they are currently not able to do. The results of the study contribute to the DISCOMs’ policy makers in considering what key values their frontline managers should portray, who all are now customers, how should they act and respond to stake holders in-particular customers, what work ethics and habits are important, and what key competencies do they want to see in their frontline management. A sound mixture of theory and practical training will effectively develop their skill level. The results obtained also helps in studying the dimensions of the redesigned jobs and the anticipated competencies of frontline managers at the lately formed power distribution companies. The study gives valuable information to the policy makers, management, and human resources wing of the DISCOMs to review their policies in the light of the results obtained in this study. The results of the study further contributes to the academics by giving supporting information on customers’ perception in the ongoing scenario on as many as 30 different attributes to further the research on understanding what additional variables may also exist and how they can be remedied. The results of the study confirm that various skills and attributes of the frontline managers impact customer services at the power distribution companies. DISCOMs should therefore strive to nurture and develop a suitable scenario in order to foster the performance of their frontline mangers which will eventually become a source of companies’ improved customer services. Better performance of their frontline managers will eventually result in improved customer satisfaction. 10. LIMITATIONS OF STUDY AND SCOPE FOR FUTURE RESEARCH The major limitation of the study was the inability to cover customers from a bigger geographical area to ensure an equal representation of different categories. Secondly, non many published researches in the field were available. Reforms in power sector being a recent phenomenon, not much research is done on customers’ perception on frontline managers’ performance.
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 24 Another limitation was that the data were collected from only two states in central India, which could have been collected from more respondents in a wider area with cross cultural extensions. A more elaborate study in a larger geographical region cross culturally on the subject will definitely broaden the scope of improving the overall skill sets of frontline managers. The present study in this direction necessitates a further detailed research on the theme. These responses collected in this study itself can be of valuable importance for DISCOMs’ policy makers to train and upgrade different skills of their frontline managers. Similar studies on customers’ perception about DISCOMs may help in giving a more accurate picture. REFERENCES 1. Anthony, Scott. (2012). The Little Black Book Of Innovation: How It Works, How to Do It, Harvard Business Review Press 2012 Retrieved 23/01/2013, from http://www.fastcodesign.com/1669070/3-ways-to-predict-what-consumers-want-before-they- know-it 2. Ardabili F S., Daryani S M., Molaie M., Rasooli E., Kheiravar M H. (2012). Importance of mutual relations on customer satisfaction in industries with no / low direct customer contact. African Journal of Business Management Vol. 6 (29) pp 8637-8643. Retrieved 21.01.2013 from http://www.academia.edu/2239241/Importance_of_mutual_relations_on_customer_satisfaction _i_industries_with_low_no_direct_contact 3. Beattie, Rona S. (2006). Line Managers and Workplace Learning: Learning from the Voluntary Sector, Human Resource Development International, Vol.9, No. 1, p. 99-119, Mar 2006 4. Beder, S. (2006). Electricity-The Global Impact of Power Reform, University of Wollongong, p61 5. Center for Power Efficiency in Distribution (CENPEID), (2005) Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited, DRUM Training Programs, Management Themes, Performance Benchmarking in Quality of Supply & Service Retrieved 16/06/2012, from www.ndpl.com/Display- Content.aspx?RefTypes=2&RefIds=92&page=DRUM%20Training%20Programs 6. Foss, Nicole. (2012). India Power Outage: The Shape of Things to Come? The Automatic Earth Retrieved 23/01/2013, from http://theautomaticearth.com/Energy/india-power-outage-the- shape-of-things-to-come.html 7. Ilic, Maria., Apt, Jay., Khosla, Pradeep., Lave, Lerster., Morgan, Granger., Talukdar, Sarosh. (2003). Introducing Electric Power into a Multidisciplinary Curriculum for Network Industries, IEEE 2003 special issue on Education in Power Engineering. 8. IPD (2000) Success through Learning: The Argument for Strengthening Workplace Learning (London: IPD). 9. Marsick, V. J., Watkins, K. (1997). Lessons from informal and incidental learning, J. Burgoyne and M. Reynolds (Eds). Management Learning: Integrating Perspectives in Theory and Practice (London: Sage). 10. McGurk, Monica., Smet, Aaron., Vinson, Marc. (2010). How companies manage the front line today: McKinsey Survey results, McKinsey Quarterly, Feb 2010 Retrieved 28/05/2012, from www.mckinseyquarterly.com/How_companies_manage_the_frontline_today_McKinsey_Surve y_results_2537 11. Sahoo, Golak B. (2012). Spokesperson: Central Electricity Supply Utility of Orissa Retrieved 23/01/2013, from http://theautomaticearth.com/Energy/india-power-outage-the-shape-of- things-to-come.html 12. Scottish Executive (2003). Life through Learning, Learning through Life: The Lifelong Learning Strategy for Scotland. Edinburgh: The Scottish Executive.
  • International Journal of Marketing and Human Resource Management (IJMHRM), ISSN 0976 – 6421 (Print), ISSN 0976 – 643X (Online), Volume 5, Issue 2, March-April (2014), pp. 10-25 © IAEME 25 13. Singh, Jagdip. (2000) Performance Productivity and Quality of Frontline Employees in Service Organizations. Journal of Marketing, American Marketing Association, Vol. 64, No. 2 (Apr., 2000), p. 15-34. 14. Recommendations of National Conference on Demand Side Management (DSM) organized by Central Electricity Authority (CEA), Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) with Central Board of Irrigation & Power at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi on 24/01/2012. Retrieved 26/08/2013 from http://www.beeindia.in/schemes/documents/nmeee/DSM_photos/conference_recommendations .doc 15. Ministry of Power (2004) Objectives of Ministry of Power and USAID’s joint Distribution Reform, Upgrades and Management (DRUM) Project (Dec 2004). Retrieved 26/08/2013 from http://powermin.nic.in/whats_new/pdf/DRUM_training_programme1.pdf 16. IGNOU (2007). Study material for Advanced Certificate in Power Distribution Management. 17. pManifold (2011) Report of study on Satisfaction & Preferences of Electricity Consumers in nine districts of MP, India. Retrieved 09.06.2013 from http://www.indiaprwire.com/pressrelease/utilities/2011081694835.htm 18. Marketing and Development Research Associates (2013) Final Report – Consumers Awareness of Consumer Rights & Consumer grievance Redressal Mechanism. Retrieved 12.06.2013 from http://www.mercindia.org.in/pdf/Order%2058%2042/Sample_Survey_Report_4%20Jan%2020 13.pdf 19. Wells Craig S., Wollack James A. (2003) Testing & Evaluation Services, University of Wisconsin. An Instructor’s Guide to Understanding Test Reliability. Retrieved 07.07.2013, fromhttp://testing.wisc.edu/Reliability.pdf 20. Thanhlong Duong, Jiangang Yao and Vietanh Truong, “Optimal Placement of TCSC Based On Min-Cut Algorithm For Congestion Management In Deregulated Electricity Market” International Journal of Electrical Engineering & Technology (IJEET), Volume 3, Issue 1, 2012, pp. 210 - 225, ISSN Print : 0976-6545, ISSN Online: 0976-6553, Published by IAEME. 21 Archana Singh, Prof. D.S.Chauhan and Dr.K.G.Upadhyay, “Effect of Reactive Power Valuation of Generators In Deregulated Electricity Markets” International Journal of Electrical Engineering & Technology (IJEET), Volume 3, Issue 1, 2012, pp. 44 - 57, ISSN Print : 0976- 6545, ISSN Online: 0976-6553, Published by IAEME. 22 Ameesh Kumar Sharma, Ankush Gupta and Umesh Sharma, “Electricity Forecasting of Jammu & Kashmir:A Methodological Comparison” International Journal of Electrical Engineering & Technology (IJEET), Volume 4, Issue 2, 2013, pp. 416 - 426, ISSN Print : 0976-6545, ISSN Online: 0976-6553, Published by IAEME.