SSE launches customer service pledge

Energy supplier SSE is launching a nationwide advertising campaign to promote a new pledge to give customers £20 off their bill if it fails to meet new customer service commitments.


The press campaign aims to highlight the energy supplier’s revamped set of five customer service commitments (see box), which form part of a wider customer charter it says will help people save money, make life easier for them and help them “when they need it most.”

SSE says the pledge shows it wants “to be more than just the best of a bad bunch.” The launch of the marketing campaign is the start of a wider push from SSE to make the customer charter a more prominent part of its positioning.

Alistair Phillips-Davies, deputy chief executive of SSE, adds the initiative sends “a clear message to the whole of the industry” and called on rivals to be more customer focused.

Print ads feature straplines including: “We haven’t said a lot. It doesn’t mean we haven’t been busy.” and “The energy industry. Now for some positives.”

Phillips-Davies adds: “This is about more than just £20. It’s about setting ourselves ever higher standards and making ourselves fully accountable for meeting them, not just talking about them.

“We would be first to admit that we have not always lived up to customers’ expectations in the past, but we pride ourselves on being different to other energy suppliers. We have been at the forefront of progress that has already been made in the industry, moving first to simplify our tariffs, end doorstep sales and help improve competition from smaller suppliers – and where we have led, others have followed. No-one can control how much energy is going to cost in the future, but we can control how we conduct ourselves and deal with our customers.”

The announcement comes just days after rival npower vowed to become number one in the industry for customer experience by 2015. It has launched a customer feedback programme to support the shift as well as launching a company-wide restructure.

Paul Massara, chief executive of npower, says: “In the past we’ve been an engineering-led company and we were known as number one for investment and innovation in the UK’s infrastructure: from now on, we’re a new customer-led business and we want to be number one at this too. It’s time for a step change in our business culture – everything we do will have the customer at the heart of it.”

SSE customer commitments

  • Always calling customers back when we say we will.
  • Never transferring calls more than once unless the customer agrees.
  • Offering to find ways to save customers money on every call.
  • We will give you the opportunity to speak to a manager if you ask
  • When you call we will offer to find you ways to save money

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