In defence of service level

Wednesday 5th April 2017

Noted oil well firefighter Red Adair once said “if you think it’s expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur.” At E2 we’re 100% committed to reducing energy spend, but we have some sympathy with the late Mr. Adair.

Service level across the energy industry is nowhere near what it should be, and it’s energy customers who are paying the price. Unlike in the domestic market, which is hopelessly stagnant due to mistrust and perceived complexity, business customers are by now at least alive to the possibility of switching to the cheapest energy provider. But is the cheapest always the best?

In all our years of experience we rarely note a correlation. Effective service can occasionally be married to competitive pricing. Expensive prices can occasionally be put out there by suppliers with a history of indifferent delivery. Price will – and should – always be the key determinant of where to buy your gas & power, but if you’re going it alone, the customer service minefield also needs navigating. That healthy differential between the cheapest and best price can soon disappear if you have employees spending their working lives tied up listening to hold music, or repeating the same query to the tenth call centre operative in a row.

Of course, the alternative is to engage a third party with a proven record of excellent customer service, and delegate the headache to them. To that end, E2 Services’ Procurement & Bureau teams await your call.

Mike Stafford, Head of Energy Services