Customers

Examining how utilities are tackling the key issues of vulnerability and affordability

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A charity has urged Ofgem to make vulnerable customers central to local electricity networks’ transformation into distribution system operators. National Energy Action said there was currently a “lack of detail” on how networks’ strategies for meeting the needs of these customers would be incorporated into their future role.
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Under a new tariff Yorkshire Water will match billpayers' contributions to clear their debts, which the company said would equate to an average of £195 per eligible customer annually.
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Challenges thrown up by the pandemic should “supercharge” the focus of the smart meter rollout towards prepayment meter (PPM) customers, the chief executive of National Energy Action has said. Adam Scorer told Utility Week smart meters are the precondition for addressing one of the most “egregious market failures in energy”.
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Just days after Ofgem revealed the supplier owed £8.7 million in renewables obligations (RO) and feed-in-tariff payments, Tonik Energy was no more - by far the largest supplier to exit the market in 2020. But, the tale of a business failure days after the RO bills are announced is becoming a familiar one. Utility Week examines how it all went wrong - and who will pick up the pieces.
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Engagement with stakeholders and customers has never been more important across utility companies. Business activities and strategies are shaped and impacted by the needs and views of these audiences. But how should water and energy companies be approaching engagement to help deliver their social responsibilities and business plans in a post-Covid environment?
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Energy switching rates reached an all-time high in 2019, with 25% of households making the switch. While this level of engagement is promising, concerns remain over the reliability and speed of switching. The energy companies are already paying out hundreds of thousands of pounds in compensation costs for erroneous transfers and non-compliance to the time frame, so how can they stop these from escalating in the wake of next-working-day switching in 2021?
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Latest in Customers

In a water white paper published last month, government pledged to shake up the water industry. It set out plans that would eventually allow all non-domestic customers to choose their supplier, exposing water companies to competition in many cases for the first time. The government wants companies to be more responsive to customers and the environment, but has it done enough to make sure water remains affordable, and will it give companies and customers the tools they need to manage demand? Have your say in our live webchat, starting at 3pm. The webchat will scroll in a "Cover It Live" panel immediately below this paragraph. To have your say, use the comment box in the panel - no login required.
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SSE is the next major energy supplier to announce a price cut. The firm will cut gas prices by 4.5 per cent as of 26 March and promised not to raise electricity prices until October at the earliest.
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Calor Gas, the UK's biggest provider of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) has announced plans to be the first rural energy supplier to become an energy services company (Esco).
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Consumer watchdogs have welcomed a five per cent price cut from independent energy firm Ovo. Consumer Focus said major suppliers will feel the heat from customers if they do not also pass on falls in wholesale prices.
The bitterly cold winter of 2010/11 resulted in widespread pipe bursts and call centre chaos - and the first snows of this winter have arrived. So how prepared is the water sector for a big freeze? Megan Darby investigates
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Businesses know energy is expensive, but are reluctant to invest in efficiency measures. As cold weather starts to kick in for the first time this year, Richard Postance tells the government to educate and reassure.
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