Majority of customers want personalised energy experience

UK customers are demanding a more digital and personalised experience from their energy supplier, with 92 per cent saying they would be more satisfied if suppliers offered more personalised services.

Personalised services include things like a customisable digital bill or website that signs the customer up to the best available offer based on real-time usage.

The research from Accenture also revealed that consumers in the UK are interested in the next generation of value propositions including automated home energy management (76 per cent) and connected home products (69 per cent).

A majority of consumers would be discouraged, however, from signing up for additional products and services if their energy provider was not able to provide a seamless experience (77 per cent).

Accenture highlighted that these demands make it more difficult for suppliers to retain customers, with 38 per cent of consumers likely to switch to a different energy provider compared with 36 per cent in 2015. Among digital users this figure rises to 68 per cent who would consider switching if a seamless experience could not be provided.

Seventy per cent of consumers in the UK would also consider using alternative providers for their electricity including phone and cable retailers.  

Accenture Energy Consumer Services director Tony Masella said: “Incumbent utilities have considerable resources to fight off challengers, including invested capital, strong brands and customer trust, a broad range of established capabilities and decades of institutional knowhow and data, but they need to adopt new models now to meet consumer expectations.

“The ability to provide both a compelling customer experience and a high-performing organisation hinges on investing in people, selecting the right operating model and developing the right capabilities to efficiently and effectively execute against the right strategic customer plays.”

The seventh annual report, which surveyed energy consumers across 17 countries, recommends that energy providers adopt three new strategic consumer plays to successfully compete for market share and meet customer demands. The recommendations include becoming a commodity-centric provider offering digital interactions and effortless experiences, being a marketplace enabler and trusted advisors for solutions and information on smart and distributed energy resources and driving profitability in new markets like connected home products.