In 2008, Ofgem introduced new regulations to ensure that all electricity companies had proper processes in place to record and report complaints, and to do so in a manner that’s consistent across the industry*.
This is our eighth annual report since these new regulations took effect – and we’ve had the lowest number of complaints per 1000 customers for six out of those eight years.
We have a slightly higher number of complaints this year. The increase is largely down to a billing issue at the start of the year, which we’ve now resolved – so we don’t expect that trend to continue.
To further improve our service, we introduced our app and online account last year – and we’ll be doing more on that front in the next twelve months. You can currently submit meter readings on the app and online – very soon, you’ll soon be able to view and pay your bills, and access your account anytime, from anywhere.
On top of that, we’ve also begun our Smart meter rollout, which will eliminate the biggest bugbear for all energy customers – billing and meter reading. On average, around 90 per cent of all energy supply problems in the UK relate to billing and meter readings. Smart meters will ensure bills are always accurate and never estimated, and customers will no longer have to submit meter readings, or wait for someone to come and read their meter either.
These two things are a key part of our evolution into a 21st century energy company.
Overall, with 853 complaints in total between October 2015 and September 2016, our key complaint measurement stands at 4.99 complaints per 1000 customers.
Our aim at Ecotricity is to deliver the very best possible customer service that we can. The principles that guide this are simple: we’re honest and open in all of our communications; where we make a mistake, we say so and learn from it; where a customer makes a mistake, we also say so; and above all, we treat people the way we like to be treated.
We know that it's not possible to get everything right all the time, however hard we try. What’s really important to us, however, and what we think sets us apart from other energy companies, is that when things do go wrong we put them right as quickly as we can. For that, we have our Complaints Team, a team of people that access all areas of the business and whose job is to swiftly get to the bottom of all problems, resolve them – and report back to our staff and customers on an equal footing.
You can find out more about our complaints procedure or read our complaints code of practice here. If you require a hard copy of our code of practice, please call us on 0345 555 7 100.
The Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Act 2007 required the Office of Gas & Electricity Markets (Ofgem) to set new complaints handling regulations that are binding upon regulated energy providers. These Regulations came into legal force on 1 October 2008 and all regulated providers were required to make any necessary changes to their complaints handling arrangements by that time. A full copy of these regulations can be obtained via www.legislation.gov.uk or from The Stationery Office Limited, PO Box 29, Norwich NR3 1GN.
* OFGEM defined a complaint for this purpose (a reportable complaint) as being an expression of dissatisfaction that has not been resolved by the end of the working day following the day of receipt.