TPIs, brokers and consultants are companies that provide varying degrees of services and advice to energy customers. These companies now procure over 50% of the energy used by businesses in the UK and this space remains unregulated in the UK.
Ofgem formed a working group and prepared a Draft Code of Conduct to protect the interests of non-domestic energy customers and in particular their interests in having confidence that when using a TPI they will act in a fair, honest and appropriate manner to assist them with their energy needs. Frustratingly, three years later we still remain in an unregulated industry.
There are a number of great TPIs in the market place acting for the best interests of their clients, however, unfortunately there are many that are less credible. Often it's all too late when a company finds out that the TPI they have signed up with is a cowboy because they realise, for example, that camouflaged in the small print are terms that firmly tie them in to receive these dismal standards and services for years to come.
Energy is a complex sector and that complexity is growing by the day. Navigating this terrain requires specialist skills and the value of the TPI is growing - if you find the right one, or the right one finds you. Nick, our Managing Director, recognised this problem back in 2009 and amber energy™ was born. Seven years on and there are over 20 members of the team who all share the desire to bring a completely transparent approach to our customers.
For some it will come as a surprise that TPIs and the like, charge and get paid for their services, however the way that this is built into a contract is not clear and it's not a topic that's often spoken about. At amber energy™ transparency doesn't start and end with free, to us it's more than that.
We take our time to understand the needs of our clients and partners, putting together a clean plan and respond with a clear proposal to meet these needs. We clearly set out how much we charge for our services and provide options around how we receive these fees.
It's critical to us that our customers are clear on what value they are getting from us so we provide a SLA (service level agreement) that crystalises what we are going to provide and deadlines for this. Our transparent approach doesn't end here, we explain which suppliers we've tendered to and detail the costs provided by each, whilst remaining impartial.
Suppliers now offer a number of products to meet with the increased flexibility required by the end users, for example pretty much all non-commodity costs can be fixed or passed through, its your consultants job to compare these products in a way that helps you truly compare apples with apples, some TPIs don’t make this clear and it can look like your contract is much cheaper than it is, amber will build up these costs for you to present a more accurate picture of what your energy costs will be to help you budget.
At amber energy™ we can help you to manage your energy costs effectively and clearly, if you would like to have a friendly chat about how to get on track contact email@example.com