my energy: 2022 was the year when the Bank of Norway’s main interest rate jumped from 0.5 percent to 2.75 percent. In contrast, the general level of prices also rose sharply, and Statistics Norway referred to the price increase in 2022 as “rare». Electricity prices in particular have risen to unknown heights. In the price area N01, Ostlandt where most people live, the average weekly price rose to NOK 6.27 per kWh in late summer 2022.
Against this background, it is reasonable to wonder how dissatisfied electricity customers will be, because electricity is a commodity that everyone must buy. The Norwegian Customer Meter Survey 2023 has recently been launched, and it is possible to find two answers there.
Tibber is wrong
The most surprising thing about this year’s investigation of the electric company is that Tibber fell like a stone on the list. The company was included in the survey for the first time in 2022, and then moved straight into third place among all companies surveyed, regardless of industry.
Before the energy crisis really started, Tipper flew high. In an article on the E24 website from the summer of 2021, we can read that the company has increased its turnover by about 600 percent compared to the previous year. Customers flocked, managing director Edger Vardal Aknes was able to refer to Tibber as “Norwegians’ “favorite energy supplier” in a press release later that year, and that each month the company gained 20,000 new customers. This was the right time.
In the collective list of all companies examined i 2023 edition of the Norwegian Customer Barometerwe find Tibber at 108. That’s a drop of 105 places on a list of 159 companies in total — in just one year.
This fall clearly has something to do with the company’s controversial move in the fall of 2022. Tibber then began billing half of the following month’s consumption in advance, to boost the company’s liquidity for direct trading. This was not received kindly by the company’s customers, and The noise level around this was high rest of the year. Towards the end of February 2023, the company’s retraction of the new scheme came through a piece of news on the company’s website:We’ve lost our way!».
It’s hard to disagree with that, now that we’ve got some sort of conclusion with our Norwegian Customer Meter.
Most of them are getting better
There are a total of eight electricity companies involved in the survey. In addition to Tibber’s free fall, Nord-Trøndelag Elektrisitetsverk (NTE) also fell compared to last year, from 85th place to 99th place. All other broadcasters have improved their position compared to the 2022 list. This indicates that electricity prices alone did not affect the standing of the electric company among its clients. This is also indicated by the Project Manager for the Norwegian Customer Scale, Pål Rasmus Silseth at BI Business School:
– The finding shows that customers seem to be directing their frustrations at the authorities rather than the electricity providers, he says in an article about this year’s survey on BI website.
It is not inconceivable that this is a valid analysis, when we consider the ruling party’s performance in opinion polls since the last parliamentary elections.
The article refers to most electric companies’ results as a “significant improvement” over last year’s survey. When we study the numbers, we see that most of them have moved from 10 to 20 places on the list. The exception among those who climb is not. They’ve gone up from 134th in 2022 to 70th in 2023. It’s really a solid improvement. It should also be noted that despite everything, Tibber didn’t quite fall to the bottom of the list of streaming companies, they have four out of eight companies in this category behind them, also in the 2023 survey.
The project manager also comments on Tibber’s brutal fall on this year’s hit list.
It is very rare to see such a significant impact on customer satisfaction. It shows, Silseth says, that a strong attitude can be quickly destroyed if actions perceived as negative for clients are taken.
– Sincere remorse
The company’s director of public relations and communications Gaute Haaversen-Westhassel also agrees that the restructuring of the billing system is the cause of Tibber’s downfall.
“We realize we did something our customers weren’t very excited about, and we took it very seriously,” he replies when asking Maine Energy how the company will react on a Norwegian customer scale in 2023. He’d prefer to focus on the company returning to the old invoice system from March 2023 which It was announced in the article “Vi tabba oss ut!” on Tibber’s own site.
Notice that this was lying well?
– It was sincere regret, because we saw that we saw our customers in a difficult situation. And that’s why it was so important to us to be able to back off in February, and we’ve worked on that consistently since we introduced the new billing system last fall. But then the outlook was less clear than it was, especially after Christmas, when electricity prices were more stable, Haversen-Westhasel responded.
– But overall, this reflection has been very important to our customers, and our ability to help our customers control their electricity consumption. He concludes that this is the core of our work.
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