CNG has stepped up as the voice of independent energy suppliers to spearhead a campaign which aims to revolutionise customer communication and competition in the utility sector.
Led by impartial business savings service Make it Cheaper; the CEDs (Contract End Dates) on Bills Campaign has fast gathered momentum with more than 1000 businesses and charities claiming that current operating standards and communications are failing them and their right to seek out the best possible deal for energy costs.
High renewal rates for gas and electricity contracts have long been the cause of angst for businesses and charities, not least because the bill payers often find themselves unknowingly tied into new rates before the old ones expire, preventing them from switching.
Current research with wide-ranging businesses highlights that the bills of those missing their renewal deadlines are 30 per cent higher than those who successfully switch or re-negotiate rates; resulting in an annual overspend of £2 Billion in the UK each year.
While CNG represents the independent side of the sector it will be joined by EON, a member of the ‘Big Six’ in a bid to offer increased benefits to businesses and organisations of all sizes.
The overall aim of the proposition is to make reviewing energy rates easier by ensuring CEDs and renewal dates are printed on bills along with any notice period required to terminate. The changes proposed also include renewal letters being sent by Recorded Delivery so they are not easily missed and ensuring they show the difference between the current rates charged and the proposed renewal rates in pounds and percentages.
This, it is argued, will lead to greater awareness of important deadlines, making it easier to switch supplier – or negotiate with existing ones – and result in more businesses/charities doing so.
CNG MD Jacqui Hall said:
CNG is embracing the opportunity to represent independent energy suppliers in the pioneering bid to promote greater competition and better, more accurate communication between energy providers and customers.
Delivering clear, concise information at regular intervals to our customers on their notice period and contract end date will empower them to seek out the best deal for their needs at any one time and overall, this move will increase accountability and credibility in this industry.
As an energy supplier outside of the ‘Big Six’ this move is a vital step to developing the most competitive offering and providing customers with the most rounded view of services on offer; in effect, giving us a much louder voice.
Jonathan Elliott, managing director of Make It Cheaper, explains:
Poor customer engagement is by far the biggest issue with four out of five businesses simply overlooking their renewal offers and left in the dark over if/how/when they can switch. So it’s fantastic news that the suppliers have listened to concerns and are prepared to make the necessary changes.