Recent figures from Citizen’s Advice show that Scottish Power is now not only the most complained about supplier in the UK energy market, but it has also tallied up the largest number of complaints - 1,163 per 100,000 customers - ever recorded by one supplier.
Over the course of 2014, the number of customer complaints that Scottish Power received increased by a staggering 588%. The firm managed to overtake Npower – who have notoriously held the unofficial ‘worst supplier’ title, as far as customer satisfaction is concerned, for the past few years – as the public’s least favourite energy company.
Citizen’s Advice also reported that complaints from SSE, British Gas, Npower and EDF had fallen, although all were still above average. A large proportion of complaints in the past year have been a direct result of suppliers putting new billing systems in place. The government’s smart meter rollout has required suppliers to install the new systems in thousands of UK households. As a result, many energy consumers have been receiving inaccurate bills – or have no received bills at all – leading to debt, confusion and general dissatisfaction amongst customers.
Scottish Power failed to deal with the high volume of complaints it received in an efficient and conclusive manner – with many having to result to taking matters to the Energy Ombudsman – which resulted in industry regulator, Ofgem, issuing the energy giant with a sales ban of 12 days. The ban means that during the allotted time period, Scottish Power were legally unable to recruit new customers, giving them time to handle the backlog of complaints from existing customers.
If you are experiencing difficulties with your energy supplier, you should always try to resolve issues directly with them first. You can also contact Citizen’s Advice for help, or consider switching to a new supplier, too.
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