Lockdown was tough for all of us! As a business, the safety of our staff and customers is our priority. So, we temporarily paused our smart meter installation program.
However, our smart meters installers still kept busy during this time. They delivered vital medicines and supplies through our partnership with Boots, Avicenna, and Lloyds Pharmacy. Our amazing team of installers made of 75,000 deliveries to vulnerable and self-isolating customers.
Now that restrictions are lifting we're getting ready to safely install smart meters again. We also want to help you take control your energy and the impact it has on your carbon footprint.
We caught up with one of our installers, Ameen Khalil, to find out how he got on when lockdown started. He also shares with us how he's getting ready to get back on the road to install smart meters.
When the UK went into lockdown how did things change for you?
Everything changed when we went into lockdown. I didn't know things would get so serious. I would always follow the news to get the latest updates. All smart meter installations stopped for me. I was worried but had to keep positive. All training and meetings had to be done online which was a new way of doing things.
What extra steps are you now taking to ensure you’re keeping yourself and customers safe?
Additional Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as visors and gloves are supplied to the installers to ensure we can enter the property safely. Before we visit the customer we ask them to keep the area well ventilated by leaving the windows or doors open for 30 minutes. We also ask the customers to stay in a separate room while we carry out the meter installation.
As you have been fulfilling a very different kind of role how have customers reacted to your deliveries?
I helped out as a volunteer for Boots Pharmacy at the Harrow branch. Customers were surprised to see me turn up in an EDF van. I was once caught by surprise when a couple walked past me while I was making a delivery; they started clapping and thanked me for working.
What preparations are happening before you go out on the road?
We will have to work in a slightly different way to keep customers and ourselves safe. Customers will have to be briefed in advance by our customer service advisers so they know what to expect once we turn up on site.
Can you give us your top tips on using your In-Home Display
It's a good idea to turn on appliances and check the IHD to see how much energy consumption each appliance uses. You can then make the best energy-saving decisions.
What would you say are the benefits of having a smart meter?
The biggest advantage is you can see your energy consumption. Secondly, you can monitor your spending on the IHD display. You can then use that information to reduce your energy use and become more energy efficient. There is no need to send your meter reading as this happens automatically.