Sarah Thacker, Vulnerable Customer

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Doing more for vulnerable customers

“Our team works on all sorts of initiatives that aim to protect our most vulnerable customers and find ways we can help and support them. For example, the warm home discount obligation on energy suppliers or working to tackling fuel poverty. I work on the warm home discount project and on redeveloping our personalised support service for customers with additional needs.”

Achieving our ambition

“I think the Personalised Support Service will help us to achieve our ambition of being the best and most trusted for customers. It’s still in its early stages, but we’re confident we can reach out to every customer that needs our support – and, wherever possible, cover all their requirements in one conversation. This could include things like a better tariff or payment method, advice on becoming more energy-efficient, a warm home discount rebate, and a benefit entitlement check to ensure they're getting all the government support they’re eligible for. It’s all about providing personal and sustainable help and advice, not just offering a quick fix.”

Making a real difference

“I’m really happy to be involved in this project. We can make a real difference to customers if we get it right, and I’m excited to help it develop.”

 - Sarah Thacker, Vulnerable Customer Innovation Executive

Nick Eves, Customer Insight Team

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Understanding our customers

“I work in the Customer Insight team, focused on understanding consumer behaviour and attitudes, so the business can put the customer at the heart of everything we do. There is always a need to understand what works for the customer, whether in communication, new product development, or contract renewals. We’re the ones that go out and talk to the customers directly about their needs, and present that back to the business.”

Top for trust and satisfaction

“A good example is the work we did in developing Blue + Price Promise. From the initial ideas generated, to the detailed messaging for product launch, through to the way we approach renewals – everything used our insight and research. To see whether this is a success, we look at how well this range of products has sold, why customers have signed up, and what they think of EDF Energy.”

See the results

“The low-carbon Blue products have been used in advertising, and working on the project was excellent; because I could see the customer insights being applied and the results produced. Even people outside the industry have seen the Blue products and comment on their success, and I can see directly how my contributions have helped us.”

- Nick Eves, Customer Insight Team

Marie Spiers, Vulnerable Customer

Helping our customers

“We are working on several projects to support customers who need our help the most, and are keen to see EDF Energy stand out for what we offer our vulnerable customers. In 2003, we were the first energy company to launch a Trust Fund for those struggling to pay their bills, and have since helped over 30,000 customers. In 2006, we were the first energy supplier to launch a social tariff to help people in fuel poverty with their energy costs.”

“A lot of our more vulnerable customers are on prepayment meters and we are now planning to launch a fixed rate tariff for our prepay customers in summer 2014. The tariff will provide prepay customers with a real choice for the first time and allow them to protect themselves against any potential price rises.”

Complete support package

“We were the first energy supplier to offer customers a Personalised Support Service, where we aim to address customers’ additional needs such as benefits, debt and budgeting advice, rather than focus only on energy. We also offer help to find the cheapest tariff and ways to pay, to reduce energy use and advise on additional services for those with specific needs. This joined-up package of support can have a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of our vulnerable customers.”

Making a positive difference

“We’ve set several objectives for 2014 so we can measure how many customers we help, and the impact on the business. I’m genuinely thrilled to be working on this, and proud of the progress my team has made. Our vulnerable customers deserve a simple, high-quality and informative service that can help make a positive difference to their lives.”

- Marie Spiers, Vulnerable Customer Innovation Manager

Elizabeth Garber, Customer Experience Manager

Elisabeth Garber, Customer Experience Manager

Always looking to improve

“We’re responsible for making sure customers have a good reason to stay with us and choose our products. Within Customer Experience, we look for opportunities to improve what we offer, and make it stand out from the competition. Better Bill is one of those. We wanted to create a bill customers could understand in a matter of seconds.”

Easy to understand

“We did three rounds of customer research, each with different designs. From that, we learned how to lay out a bill so customers understand everything easily and how to use colour to the best effect. Everything is written in customer-friendly language and shows clearly where they could save and where their money goes. We also send out annual statements separately to our bills and these contain personalised savings messages."

Rising customer perceptions

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'. Not only that, but customers perceptions of our bills rose, and complaints relating to understanding bills dropped by 65% in the months after the launch in March 2013. I’m now very proud of our bills and how far they’ve come as a result of Better Bill. But I’m sure we can do more to make the billing experience with EDF Energy the best it can be, and we are still working hard to do just that.”

- Elizabeth Garber, Customer Experience Manager

Emma Gardiner, ECO Quality & Compliance Executive

ECO

EDF Energy met its government-set ECO targets in December 2014, months ahead of the deadline in March 2015. The company supported the installation of 170,000 energy saving measures in 144,000 homes across England, Scotland and Wales.

“As an ECO Quality and Compliance Executive, I work with Technical Monitoring Agents and internal partner managers to ensure the energy efficiency measures funded by EDF Energy via ECO are completed to high standards of quality and safety. 

“I love working with the rest of the team and I enjoy the opportunity I have to go out on site and see first hand the difference EDF Energy is making to the everyday lives of the people who benefit from our ECO funding.”

 

- Emma Gardiner, ECO Quality & Compliance Executive

Mark Dallen, Business Development Account Manager

Energy Company Obligation

In May 2015, as part of our Energy Company Obligation (ECO) responsibilities, we approved £1 million of funding for biomass district heating systems for three redeveloped central Manchester tower blocks. The refurbished Tribe apartments have regenerated the area. The once-derelict towers now house 192 flats within reach of the city centre. Their ECO-funded biomass boilers could save tenants up to £880 a year on bills compared to electric heating, according to the Energy Savings Trust – as well as saving 27,000 tonnes of carbon a year.

 

“Our team looks to identify and develop ECO funding opportunities with local authorities, councils and housing associations.
“We then manage the commercial development of each project to ensure EDF Energy’s obligated funding is spent appropriately and cost-effectively, typically reducing energy costs for householders, creating warmer and more comfortable energy-efficient homes, plus reducing household carbon emissions.”

 

- Mark Dallen, Business Development Account Manager