Britain’s ‘big six’ suppliers provide improved supplier complaints data


Philip Cullum,
Partner Consumer
Policy, Ofgem
London, England — (METERING.COM) — February 14, 2013 – Britain’s ‘big six’ energy suppliers, British Gas, EDF, E.ON, npower, Scottish Power and SSE, have started publishing on their websites improved and more accessible information on how many complaints they each get and how quickly these are handled.

To aid transparency and make it easier for customers to compare companies’ performance, the regulator Ofgem has introduced a common format that the suppliers are now using to present information. This includes information about total complaints opened and closed and how quickly these complaints are being dealt with. The information will be updated on a quarterly basis.

“Ofgem is now shining a spotlight on individual supplier performance, by getting suppliers to publish better data more often and more prominently,” commented Philip Cullum, Partner Consumer Policy at Ofgem. “This should mean that suppliers improve the way they handle complaints and that the things they learn from complainants lead to better services.”

From the latest data available, for Q4 2012, more than 1.4 million complaints were received in that period by the six suppliers. Scottish Power and SSE had the lowest proportion of complaints, of 1,359 and 1,435 per 100,000 accounts respectively, while EDF had the most, of 8,072 per 100,000 accounts. However Scottish Power and SSE resolved the lowest proportions within 24 hours, 68% and 75% respectively, while EDF, like E.ON resolved over 92% within 24 hours.

For most of the suppliers around half or more of the complaints pertained to billing and payment issues, although in E.ON’s case customer service accounted for almost one third.