Our Customer Commitments – treating customers fairly

In March 2012, our Chief Executive, Vincent de Rivaz, made three promises to our customers: to deliver fair value, better service and simplicity.

These Customer Commitments represent our dedication to putting customers first. They are also a public acknowledgement of our responsibilities as an energy supplier and a producer of electricity.

We know that trust in our sector is still low. But we have an ambition to become the best and most trusted energy supplier. And by living up to our Customer Commitments in all of our activities, we believe we can become a true force for good. We have now appointed a Customer Compliance Officer to make sure that we and our representatives live up to our Customer Commitments in all of our activities.

We welcome that the industry regulator Ofgem has set out standards of conduct for all energy providers this year, because we believe it will make things better for all customers. You can see more about these standards on this page.

Our Trust Test

We have stuck closely to, and built on our Customer Commitments since 2012. We have developed a Trust Test to make sure we meet Ofgem’s standards of conduct. It means that when we create new processes, policies or communications, we ask ourselves ‘is this the right thing to do for our customers?’. Then we ask five more questions:

  • Is this a fair thing to do?
  • Are we being professional?
  • Are we offering products, services and advice that are appropriate for each customer’s needs?
  • Are we being transparent and communicating clearly?
  • Are we being honest? Including admitting mistakes and acting quickly to put them right

 

Expand the sections below for more detail on how we are treating customers fairly:

Our Customer Commitments

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Fair value

Having access to energy is one of the most fundamental needs of all households and businesses. We’re committed to providing fair value energy for all our customers - it’s the right thing to do.

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Better service

Our aim is to offer the best service in the industry, and that means we listen to you and act on your feedback where we can.

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Simplicity

Modern life is busy. So we try to make the best use of your time by offering clear and transparent choices. We've also made our communications easier to read and understand.

Fair value

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Tariffs built to suit you

When we create new tariffs, we want them to meet genuine customer needs. Which is why we involve customers when we design new ones, and we think we offer some fantastic options.

All our Blue tariffs come with low-carbon electricity at no extra charge. This means we make sure we buy enough electricity generated from a low-carbon nuclear source to match every unit of electricity we estimate our Blue customers will use.

Find out about what's currently available from EDF Energy.

In 2012 we made a commitment to publish a summary of the price alert notifications online. We send these to our Blue+Price Promise customers when we find new tariffs which could save them £52 or more a year at typical use.

Transparency on what makes up your bill

We publish a breakdown of the costs that contribute to your bill each year. The costs are updated annually following publication of our latest full year financial results, so you can see what customers' money has gone towards.

Sometimes we may need to raise our prices. Reasons for this could include the rising cost of wholesale energy or of transporting energy to your home. When we implement price changes, we clearly explain the reasons for the change.

Fair value - see our performance

You can find information on how competitive our main tariffs are here. We will update this information each month.

Helping customers who need support

Our Personalised Support Service is for customers who need additional help or special services. Call 0800 328 9010 to find out more about our five areas of help:

  1. Help finding the cheapest tariff and most appropriate way to pay

When you call, we can check to see if we have a cheaper tariff available than the one you’re already on. We’ll also look at ways to pay which can help you budget or save you money.

  1. Help reducing energy use

The Government has introduced schemes to make homes more energy efficient. The ECO scheme helps eligible households to make energy-saving home improvements, like fitting a new boiler or insulation. We can check to see if you qualify for the scheme and, if you do, we can arrange for these home improvements to be made via our installation partners.

Find out about ways to save energy

  1. Helping with debt

Plymouth Citizen’s Advice Bureau has a free debt advice line for EDF Energy customers, wherever you live.

The EDF Energy Trust may provide grants and practical help if you are struggling with debt. The Trust may agree to pay off some or all of your household debts.

  1. Help with specific needs

You may be able to join the Priority Services Register and receive additional help (e.g. if you’re visually impaired or hard of hearing we can provide some important communications in Braille, large print or audio).

We’re also glad to support the government’s Warm Home Discount Scheme. It offers rebates to eligible customers who are struggling to find the money to keep their homes warm

  1. Help beyond energy

All EDF Energy customers, wherever they live, can call a dedicated phone line at Plymouth Citizen’s Advice Bureau. Their specialist debt experts are familiar with EDF Energy and can provide customers with a benefit entitlement check to ensure the customer is receiving all the benefits they are entitled to.

 

Better service

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Many ways to contact us

Our aim is to be here for you when and where you need us. There are a number of ways for you to get in touch with us. You can contact us on our freephone number 0800 096 9000(1) (Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm and Saturday 8am to 2pm). Calls to 0800 numbers are free from BT landlines; other network operators’ charges may vary. Our call centres are based here in the UK.

If you’d rather do your admin out of hours, we offer 24/7 access to your account online. We also offer online support through live webchat.

You can set up MyAccount to update your details or pay bills online – and our EDF Energy smartphone app lets you send a photo of your meter reading, if that’s easier for you. And there are a number of alternative ways to pay for your energy.

Good conversations

We actively monitor the service you get when you call, randomly selecting calls to listen to. We check that our advisers listen to customers, explain the options clearly and help people get the tariff that’s right for them. If we think any adviser isn’t getting it right, we give them extra training.

In 2012 we made a commitment to measure all our advisers on customer recommendation ratings. We did this by asking some customers at the end of a call if they would be happy to take part in a survey. However, this added to the call time and we decided that reducing call waiting times would be more important to our customers. So while we still measured recommendation ratings, we did it with a smaller number of advisers.

We’re trying out a new approach in 2014, with the aim to measure every adviser on customer recommendation ratings.  We will publish customer satisfaction measures on our website in 2014.

Sometimes our team members may call at your home too - for example if we arrange to read your meter. Download our 'Site visit' booklet (PDF) to see what you can expect when this happens.

What if things go wrong?

We’re working hard to have one of the lowest levels of complaints of all major energy suppliers. But even in the best organisations, people make mistakes and IT systems go wrong. When mistakes happen, we'll act promptly and courteously to put things right.

If you do need to complain, it’s easy and we’ll listen. We aim to resolve your complaint by the end of the next working day. At peak times and for more complex complaints this may take longer. We publish our complaints data online - so it’s there for you to see. If you are dissatisfied with the action we take, you can follow our complaints procedure which ultimately leads to independent resolution by the Ombudsman.

View our complaints procedure.

In 2012 we set out to have one of the lowest complaints levels in the energy industry, however we didn’t achieve this.

We have seen complaint levels fall significantly, but we recognise we still have work to do. We are committed to our goal of achieving the lowest complaints levels of the major energy suppliers by 2015 as reported by Consumer Futures. Consumer Futures ranks suppliers on the number of complaints received by Citizens Advice consumer service, Consumer Futures and the Energy Ombudsman; adjusted to reflect market share.

We hope to achieve this by continuing to listen to our customers and offering great products and service.

Your feedback helps us to make EDF Energy a better company. If you show us that something about our processes or approach is wrong, we’ll do all we can to fix it. Email us at fair@edfenergy.com.

How are we doing?

We’ve made a commitment, and will continue to publish the speed of answering our calls and emails.

See how we're doing

 

Simplicity

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Easier to understand

We’ve made a conscious effort to make our tariffs easier to understand. We’ve reduced the number of tariffs we offer – and we’ve also introduced a new energy label system. This contains key pieces of information that make it easier for you to directly compare our tariffs and find the right one for you.

Call us on 0800 096 9000(1), or compare our tariffs.

Straightforward bills

Our customers told us they thought energy bills were complicated. So we involved our customers when we redesigned them. We’ve also improved your annual statement to make it easier to understand. In its Best Practice Review of energy suppliers in August 2013, the consumers' organisation Which?, said EDF Energy's bill was 'the best of all suppliers'.

Find out more about how we bill you.

Crystal clear

We’ve made a commitment to regularly review our letters to customers to make sure they’re clear and as easy as possible to understand. We value Plain English Society accreditation and have gained the Plain English Crystal Mark for the information on the back of our bills. We'll obtain this for our Terms and Conditions booklet in 2014.

When we create written customer communications, we design them to be simple and transparent and to use plain language. We use our Trust Test to make sure communications are fair, professional, appropriate, transparent and honest.

And of course, our information is available in Braille, large format and audio format – and in alternative languages. Call our main number 0800 096 9000 for information in different languages. You can also set up your account to automatically receive some of our key information in different formats. If you or someone you know would like to receive an alternative format, please let us know by calling 0800 269 450.

 

Standards of conduct

On 26 August 2013, Ofgem’s standards of conduct came into force to make sure energy suppliers like us treat customers fairly. It’s part of many positive changes that will make the market simpler, clearer and fairer for customers and help them to choose the best deal.

For residential customers, the standards cover all interactions with customers and for small businesses(2), the standards cover everything relating to bills, contracts and changing supplier.

The standards mean that whenever we deal with a customer, we make sure it’s in a fair, professional, appropriate, transparent and honest way. All our tariffs and services must be tailored around our customers’ needs just as information given to customers should be clear, easy to understand, and jargon-free. We need to make it easy for customers to get in touch, and leave no stone unturned in putting things right if we make a mistake.

We need to make sure everyone at EDF Energy understands the standards expected of them. As part of this, each year we’re going to publish a statement that sets out the actions we’re taking to treat customers fairly.

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View our customer commitments for: