How changing energy broker can massively help your business post lockdown.
Updated: Sep 16, 2020
One of the barriers we encounter when introducing our services to new businesses, is that they already have a broker in place. We are generally prompted with the question of why, then, should a business change it’s energy broker?
There is a lot of misinformation and mistrust in the energy procurement sector. Sadly, many businesses have fallen foul of unscrupulous so-called “energy consultants” or broker-based “experts” who lack true industry knowledge. Businesses are often poorly represented and end up overpaying for their energy, having been placed into bad utility contracts.
There are many examples of mis-selling in the energy industry, in particular around the change represented in P272 and new half hourly meters for businesses, you can read more of that in our P272 blog.
As the industry is mainly unregulated, it does leave the door open for abuses of trust, however there are things that you can do to avoid being ripped off or mis-sold.
Businesses should and can expect more of their energy broker.
Upon engagement, a good energy broker should seek to understand your utility and metering infrastructure. We often find that businesses don’t have the correct meter type, which prevents them from getting on the best tariff that suits their business. This is a great example.
Importantly – you should ask your broker to disclose their commission. Not only is it right that they should do so, it is also a legal requirement. Once you have done so, then you need to decide whether their % is reasonable for the advice they have given you?
You also need to find a broker who is willing to look after your business beyond the signing of the contract. A quality energy broker will provide an ongoing interface between you and your energy supplier. This means that they will be on hand to help resolve any issues you encounter during the course of the contract, using their expertise in dealing with these large, often difficult-to-deal-with, energy suppliers.
Energy bills are becoming ever more complicated. A good energy broker should be able to offer you a billing validation service. Bill Validation can help avoid inaccurate, incorrect utility bills. Estimated billing, meter faults, incorrect VAT charges and application of business utility prices are surprisingly common issues. Both can prove to be be extremely costly.
Businesses engaged with an energy broker should ask themselves the following questions:
Did your energy broker do an evaluation of your utility infrastructure (including: MTC Evaluation & KVA Analysis)?
Are you being offered options from multiple suppliers?
Does your broker disclose its commission?
Are you receiving good after-sales care and support during the term of your energy contract?
Does your energy consultant offer a bill validation service?
If you answer ‘no’ to any of these questions, then maybe your current supplier isn’t doing everything they should to help your business? There are 100’s of brokers in the UK, but only a few are true energy experts.