Thursday, December 5, 2013

Electricity Retailer's Customer Service QOS Powers Debate

Not Happy Jan!
There is so much discussion within Australian households, on the quality of Electricity Retailer's QOS [quality of service], when it comes to finding out what is on offer from their Customer Service centre.

Is it not that long ago where a smart business said such comments as, 'the customer is always right'. Of course everyone has heard this line, which relates to a business wanting to retain it's clients and thus treats then with respect to do so.

Well this clearly is not the case with Australian Electricity Retailers. It appears there is little respect shown for the client and no real effort made to retain the client before, during or after a dispute.

For sometime now at Aussie Home Energy, we have been amazed at what the Electricity Retailer's customer service operatives seem to offer. Where we continually hear that the customer is NOT CORRECT!

A lot of the time we would argue it is the Australian Electricity Retailer's whom are NOT CORRECT! Not at all correct on such issues as,

  • Knowing if off-peak electricity is available on-site
  • Knowing what hardware is actually installed on-site
  • Knowing the correct meter id numbers on-site
  • Billing errors with very simple maths
  • Billing errors with two electricity tariff types

Now whilst we could list many more issues, the point here is there seems to little progress being made, from what we see and hear, in sorting out these very basic issues.

The client's we visit, seem to have very basic errors with their metering and billing. Errors that should not be there in the first place and at least be very easy to fix over the phone!

The errors are almost 100% of the time, very difficult to fix over the phone! WHY? Because often the householder according to the Electricity Retailer is NOT CORRECT! And in some case photographic information is not enough! In such cases as this the Electricity Retailer is simply not interested, to fixing the issue FAST! 

Add from the Electricity Retailer's Customer Service department a little rudeness, a lack of respect, incorrect facts and more poor QOS and it is no wonder there are many Aussie householders, whom are in a state of disbelief with their electricity billing!

Could all of this poor QOS stem from the poor systems in place for tracking hardware, or the lack of hardware checking, or the sharing / access of information between electricity distributor's and retailer's computer systems. Add to this, possible poor system management and a lack of quality staff training and it is not to hard to understand why householders around Australia have just about had enough.

And when a householder has had enough BAD Customer Service from an Electricity Retailer they do one or both of the following,

They MOVE Electricity Retailers & Call The Ombudsman.

This surely is not the road to progress! Moving electricity retailers is a known area we would say, where errors can occur, so this can create more of the same issues.

Contacting the Ombudsman means creating a case and this takes valuable householder's time. And all of the Ombudsman around Australia, are reporting shocking rises in the number of electricity billing complaints.

  • So why is it, the Australian householder is having to suffer all of this heart ache?
  • Is it not to hard for the correct regulatory bodies to lay down the correct regulation to stop these very simple errors?
  • Why do the Electricity Retailer's themselves seem to be at a loss to driving their own business improvement? 
  • What about an Electricity Retailer Customer Survey? 
  • Would this not answer a lot of the questions on what needs to be improved?
  • Why not use the same team to carry out such a survey. That same team that annoyed all the householders with the constant door knocking to switch electricity retailer's.

Until major development and progress occurs, it would seem the Aussie householder is going to remain in a state of suffering. Suffering from these very, very basic Electricity Retailer errors.

This blog post and podcast brought to you by Aussie Home Energy, a major player in the HOME ELECTRICITY REDUCTION SERVICE industry in Australia.

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