Proposals to deliver next-day energy supplier switching as a new industry standard have been launched.
Ofgem also aims to improve reliability of the switching process through better management and oversight of industry data.
It is consulting on plans to introduce a new flexible Centralised Switching Service (CSS) for gas and electricity switches, which can respond to the significant changes already underway in the energy market.
The CSS would be responsible for making sure meter points are accurately matched to addresses from a database.
Under the proposals, householders would be able to submit a request to a supplier to switch by 5pm and be with that supplier by midnight the following working day. For businesses, it would take an additional working day.
Ofgem proposes to introduce a regulatory requirement, as a backstop, on suppliers to switch customers within five working days of a contract being entered into and will consider if the maximum switch time should be tightened for all firms to offer next-day switching.
The reform package is expected to deliver net benefits worth between £169 million and £1 billion to consumers.
The regulator said in a statement: “We want to let consumers switch energy supplier reliably and quickly, including by the end of the next working day if they choose. We will do this by simplifying and harmonising the gas and electricity switching arrangements in a cost-effective way.
“This will build consumer confidence and facilitate competition, delivering better outcomes for consumers.”
It is inviting views until 3rd November 2017.