Businesses have “no idea” what energy companies mean by customer service as they never hear from their actual power providers.
That’s according to Peter Pickthall, HR Director at R&R Ice Cream, which manufactures products for major retailers such as Tesco and Asda in the UK, including Thorntons and Fab (pictured). The company’s total gas and electricity spend is in excess of €8-10 million across the UK and Europe.
Mr Pickthall said: “Given that energy is one of those areas where to some extent you’re almost sort of stuck to the prices that you get faced with, it’s all surprising that the energy companies talk about service because we have no idea what they mean by service. We never see anyone from the energy companies; we will see our energy broker and they will talk to us and when it comes to tendering for energy then they will put forward people. But basically we buy then on price because we have no relationship with the actual energy supplier.”
When asked it if were a ‘Bix Six’ issue or if it applied to other smaller firms, he added: “I think, primarily, somebody who’s perhaps not too close to it all that it appears to be a ‘Big Six’ issue more than anything else. I get the impression that some of the smaller suppliers like to keep close to their customer base or are able to keep close to their customer base.”
Earlier this weeka new survey found energy companies’ customer service departments left consumers on hold for as long as 29 minutes.