Scottish Power has been served with a 12-day sales ban by Ofgem after failing to meet the regulator’s customer service targets. It’s good to see Ofgem hitting suppliers where it hurts.
Back in November Scottish Power was told by Ofgem to answer all customer queries promptly, reduce its backlog of overdue bills and resolve all outstanding ombudsman decisions on complaints.
Since then the energy supplier has improved call waiting times and reduced its bills backlog, but there are still too many outstanding ombudsman rulings. This has led to Ofgem telling Scottish Power to stop all outbound sales calls for 12 days, staring from today. On top of that, any customers with outstanding complaints will continue to receive free energy until issues are resolved.
Last year Scottish Power sat at the bottom of our energy company call-waiting survey, taking customers an average of 30 minutes to speak to a human being on its customer service line. Yet, someone calling its sales line could get through in less than a minute.
Scottish Power punished
It’s right that Scottish Power is being properly punished for failing to meet its customer service targets. And given poor customer service like this, it isn’t surprising that trust in the energy market is so low.
We want the Competition and Markets Authority to propose radical reforms to Fix the Big Six. In the meantime, suppliers like Scottish Power should urgently improve how they treat their customers and not wait for the outcome of the CMA’s competition inquiry.
Are you a Scottish Power customer? What’s been your experience of their customer service? Have you had poor customer service from one of the Big Six suppliers? Are you tempted to switch?