Presentation on theme: "André Piérard, ERGEG Project Leader on Complaints Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Draft advice on Customer Complaint Handling, Reporting."— Presentation transcript:
André Piérard, ERGEG Project Leader on Complaints Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Draft advice on Customer Complaint Handling, Reporting and Classification
22 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Introduction In a year, across all economic sectors, 78 million European citizens 1 complain formally to a trader, which represents 15,7% of the EU 27 population (498 million) 700 third-party organisations 2 collect consumer complaints across the EU They received about 20 million complaints 1 in the year leading to February 2008. Complaints: a top-level indicator to monitor markets, along with Satisfaction / Prices / Switching / Safety Complaints can be a strong sign of market that is failing for customers (when a lot of similar cases occur in a market) (1) Eurobarometer 69.1 (2) Communication of the EC on a harmonised methodology for classifying and reporting consumer complaints and enquiries - ref. COM(2009) 346 final
32 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Background of this advice 3rd Energy Market Package includes provisions regarding complaints: Information on the bills about the means of dispute settlement Creation of independent mechanisms for the treatment of complaints and disputes Complaint monitoring Commission Recommendation 1998/257/EC set principles applicable to the bodies responsible for out-of-court settlement of consumer disputes (cross-sectoral) European Commission is working on a EU-wide complaints classifying system to speed up policy response to failing markets. Public consultation closing on 5 October 2009.
42 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 ERGEG’s Advice ERGEG Draft Advice on Complaint handling: the input of energy regulators on the issue of complaints. Based on national case studies, the advice addresses the operational modalities of complaint collecting, handling and classification.
52 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Methodology Scope: household customers 9 case studies: Austria, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden and the UK (Great Britain) 1 - Step by step analysis of the complaint handling process, from the point of view of a customer, to share good practices and identify those which could be recommended across the EU 2 - Comparison between these good practices already in place in some countries and country-specific aspects: legal or regulatory requirements customer behaviour and habits The aim of the report was not to compare the various regional systems & organisations
62 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Main advice regarding service providers Recommendations in the advice are based on 3 principles: Availability and transparency of information Simplicity of procedures Effectiveness 1. Information: how to complain? Service provider’s customer service: contact details on the bill Relevant third party body in case a customer wants to complain: contact details to be provided or on the bill, or through adequate channels 2. Choice of the complaint channel within service provider A wide range of channels, and more than one
72 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Main advice regarding service providers 3. Statutory complaint handling standards First acknowledgement including information: 1 day Lead time to resolve the complaint: 2 months 4. Redress schemes 5.Compliance with alternative dispute settlement body’s recommendations 6. Complaint data collection by NRA Service providers should provide data on complaints to NRAs who ask for it, preferably using a common complaints’ classification
82 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Main advice regarding 3 rd party bodies Introduction A customer needs: An independent and reliable source of information on its rights Available and effective out-of-court dispute resolution system Out-of-court dispute resolution boards’ recommendations: Solve individual cases Clarify rules and responsibilities of market actors
92 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Main advice regarding 3 rd party bodies 1. Single point of contact Set by government or NRA (in some cases in cooperation with others) Multi-channel 2.Prior contact with the service provider 3. Choice of the complaint channel Objective: avoid any discrimination 4.Access without charge or as inexpensively as possible and irrespective of the financial amount of the dispute 5.Statutory complaint handling standards within third parties Lead time to solve the dispute, determined on a national basis.
102 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Main advice regarding 3 rd party bodies 6.Financial compensation 7.Complaint data collection by NRAs Third parties, as well as service providers, should provide information on complaints to NRAs who deem it appropriate to collect data. This could help NRAs monitor the level and effectiveness of market opening and competition at retail level. 8. Complaint data publication Incitation for companies to act fairly and promptly 9.Complaint classification A proposal that can match the EC harmonised classification (in progress), including some energy specific sub-categories
112 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Next Steps Q4 2009: ERGEG is about to launch a public consultation on its draft advice Targeted audience: stakeholders involved in complaint handling – service providers, consumer affairs authorities and ministries, ombudsmen, consumer organisations… From 2009-10-01 to 2009-12-02
122 nd Citizens’ Energy Forum, London, 29-30 September 2009 Thank you for your attention! www.energy-regulators.eu Mark your diary for the World Forum on Energy Regulation IV October 18-21, 2009 Athens, Greece www.worldforumiv.info