There’s all sorts of smoke and mirrors out there when it comes to power companies and the information they pass on to their customers. When you don’t know the ins and outs of the industry (and sometimes, even when you do) it can be hard to trust that you’re getting all the info and a fair deal.
For our Chief Operating Officer, James, being Aotearoa’s only Consumer Trusted electricity retailer for 5 years running is a pretty big deal. Because it’s no easy feat becoming - and staying - a Consumer Trusted company. There’s a list of requirements that need to be met to comply with the Consumer NZ Code of Conduct, which ensures that these companies go above and beyond the norm, to deliver their customers the very best Customer Experience. That means:
- exceptional customer service
- fair returns and refund policies
- fair handling of customer complaints and a dispute resolution process
- fair contracts
- clear pricing
- integrity of privacy and data policy
- accurate advertising
- access to a consumer-friendly website
- going the extra mile for customers.
In our opinion, it’s not too much to ask of your power company (or any company, for that matter) to be genuine, fair and all-round decent. But this isn’t the norm when it comes to electricity retailers, who for the most part are known for murky pricing, misleading advertising, and so-so customer service. Not for us, thanks.
James has a hand in a number of the areas of criteria mentioned above, so we threw a couple of questions his way on what it requires from the team - and why it’s worth it.
What does it mean to the team to be Consumer Trusted for the last 5 years?
It’s huge! It’s really just a reflection of the attitude and effort the team brings to work every day. We’re a relatively small team which makes juggling resourcing and customer expectations a challenge in a fast paced industry, so to be recognised as Consumer Trusted is a great feather in the cap.
What are the standards you set for Customer Experience?
Our Customer Experience ethos is all about treating our customers as we would a friend. This means that we always seek to do right by them, we show genuine compassion when we need to have difficult conversations with them and when we get things wrong (we are only human, it happens!) we ensure that we do everything we can to put things right.
What do you personally value from a company?
I value simplicity and value in the product or service offering, and efficient customer service. My service pet peeve is when I send an enquiry through to a service provider and receive a long winded response saying how sorry they are and answering almost every question except the one I asked!
What would you say to other companies who don’t prioritise going that extra mile for customers?
“Trust takes years to build, seconds to break, and forever to repair.”
Why’s it so great being Consumer Trusted?
Delivering great customer service is the priority here at Flick. The best part of my job is hearing stories about how our service team has gone over and above to look after our customers, and the positive impact it has on them. I think people recognise the Consumer Trusted logo and know that it means we’re on their side, and it highlights some of the great work we’re doing to support Kiwis day in and day out.
And lastly, can you give us an example of when you’ve seen one of the team go above and beyond for our customers?
I often see our amazing agents on the phone to customers outside of hours, talking them through the reconnection process because another retailer has disconnected their property. This is a stressful experience for the customer, and watching our team stay late to get them reconnected ensuring that families don’t go without power is pretty special. In fact, some of our customers are so thankful that they go out of their way to email me and suggest that we give our various agents a bonus because of the outstanding service they have delivered.
We give a Flick about delivering an awesome customer experience, and it seems our customers do too!