A study has revealed that some of the newer challenger energy providers are leading the way when it comes to customer experience.
The report, commissioned by uSwitch, surveyed around 17,000 consumers of the big six energy suppliers, and seven challenger companies, to find out which ones are providing the highest level of service. Octopus Energy and Bulb led the pack when it came to customer satisfaction and both outshined all the bigger and more established ‘big six’ energy companies with scores of 96% and 92% respectively. Both companies made their debut in this report and sent a real message of intent to the competition. In third place were Utility Warehouse with an overall score of 90%
Despite the good news for smaller suppliers, general customer satisfaction dropped by 2.5% after increasing steadily for several years. Amazingly, the best seven performers in this year’s survey all managed to achieve higher scores than have ever been attained by any of the ‘big six’ since the survey began 12 years ago. The figures show a shift in attitudes towards energy, with consumers beginning to shop around more with companies they haven’t heard of in search of cheaper deals and higher quality service. The fact that many of these company provide a high level of green energy is probably a contributing factor to their success as people become more and more conscious of the need for renewable energy.
Scores for the larger companies made for dismal reading with all the big six occupying one of the bottom six positions on the leader board. Scottish Power achieved the highest score of 71% which awarded it the large supplier of the year award. Npower was found to be the worst when it came to customer satisfaction with an overall score of 65% and ended up at the foot of the table for the tenth year running.
The poor levels of satisfaction for customers might be attributed to a series of price hikes for customers who are on Standard Variable Tariffs (SVTs). SVTs are already some of the most expensive tariffs on the market and are what a consumer is automatically put onto after rolling over their contract with their current supplier.
The report will no doubt make for uncomfortable reading for the main energy players, the six companies that have a strong hold on the industry have slowly been losing part of their market share to smaller and more agile competitors over the last few years. This may signal the need to change for many of the big six who, if they don’t adopt a more customer-centric model, might find themselves at the bottom of more than just customer satisfaction leader boards in the near future.
If you’re not happy the service that your receiving from your energy provider, then check out our handy comparison tool to see what options are available in your area.