Now, from a story where an energy giant has done something to make a positive difference, to the opposite. It comes as little surprise that energy companies were ranked lowest for customer service in the latest Which? annual survey of the UK's 100 biggest brands.
Scottish Power was ranked the lowest in the consumer group's poll, with a customer score of just 59 per cent – just behind npower, which scored a not much better 61 per cent. I wrote about the report earlier this week, prompting a fresh wave of emails and letters from fed-up readers.
Lee Harris reported that she transferred to Scottish Power three years ago and "have regretted it ever since". Everything was fine for the first year and then her troubles began with an email telling her she "had been transferred to Sottish Power by error" – after which her account disappeared.
Then followed many months of communications and billing problems – which will probably be very familiar to many readers – until in June this year she decided to switch. "I was offered, through the Community Switch, a tariff with E.on that would save me £200 per year. So I took a deep breath and switched. E.on has been perfect; Scottish Power has been totally incompetent."
Lee claimed the company still owes her £174.09 and added, plaintively: "I just want my money back!"
Meanwhile Alison Richards said she has been trying to get a bill out of Scottish Power for the past six months. "We have had problems ever since I went to the ombudsman in 2014 as they seemed unable to update our gas meter details," she says.
"Can you get the chief executive to be honest about this and not fob us off with platitudes?" she asked. "What are they doing at a system level to resolve this and how long is it likely to take? The responses from the customer service assistants just tend to make people more angry."
I've passed on both stories – and others – to Scottish Power and will report back on its responses. Neil Clitheroe, the firm's retail and generation chief, told me earlier this year: "It's going to take a few more months to fix these problems but we're solving more every day and, over the next few months, we'll have them all fixed."
Sadly, many customers are still waiting.Reuse content