Attendees at this year’s Heat and Decentralised Energy Conference are to receive expert advise on how to optimise customer service when providing heat networks.
The presentation, at the Association for Decentralised Energy's event on Thursday 30th November, will be provided by Kirsty Lambert, community heating specialist and Director at Switch2 Energy.
Kirsty Lambert stated that by taking time to understand residents and business owners’ needs, network operators ‘can go above and beyond service levels in traditional centralised energy supply.’
Drawing on Switch2's 35-years’ of experience in delivering community heating schemes, Lambert will share best practice on how to get customer service right.
She will advise on engaging with residents at all stages of community heat network design, development and operation; how to set heat tariffs fairly and involve and communicate clearly with residents; how to offer consumer choice and protect vulnerable customers, and how to use digital innovation to improve metering and billing.
The presentation will also cover award-winning examples of customer service excellence in community and district heating, including Switch2's smart metering partnership with Sheffield City Council, which is enabling residents to reduce bills by an average of 38% by moving from flat rate billing to new generation pay-as-you-go technology.
She will also discuss the importance of customer engagement and education in a joint project with Newport City Homes' Duffryn district heating scheme, where residents have halved their energy consumption by using Switch2's smart meters.
“It is imperative that developers and heat suppliers adhere to best practice standards from organisations such as CIBSE and The Heat Trust,” Lambert said, “Including setting and delivering on guaranteed performance standards, and consulting with and involving customers at all stages of project delivery. We must give residents control by using smart metering and offer greater choice of billing and payment options, which is particularly important for vulnerable customers who may be in fuel poverty.”
The conference will celebrate ADE's 50th anniversary at the forefront of championing decentralised energy in the UK and will take place at the Crystal building in London.