This quarter we opened 111 complaints from embedded network customers. These customers were complaining about a range of energy service providers:

  • Authorised energy retailers: 81
  • Exempt electricity sellers: 20
  • Authorised gas retailers: 6
  • Licenced water provider: 1
  • Licenced Electricity Network: 1
  • Gas (Not Allocated): 1
  • Electricity (Not Allocated): 1

EWON closed 108 complaints from customers whose electricity or gas is supplied through an embedded network in the quarter.

Top issues for embedded network complaints received Jul-Sep 2020 

Complaint issues Cases
Billing > High > Disputed 52
Customer service > poor service 12
Billing > Tariff > rate 10
Customer services > Failure to respond 10
Billing > Delay 9
Billing > Fee and charges > Service availability 9
Billing > Period 7
General > Energy/water 7
Credit > Payment difficulties > Current/arrears 6
Billing > Backbill 6
Billing > Opening/closing account 6

Difficulty with changing retailer 

Customers whose electricity and gas are provided through an embedded network have difficulty changing retailers. The case study and issues discussed below illustrate the complexity involved when customers seek to change retailers for embedded networks.

Case study

The customer’s electricity is provided through an embedded network. She told EWON that she contacted her retailer and advised she wanted to leave the embedded network. 

She felt that both the embedded network and her preferred retailer did not provide a clear explanation about how to change retailers and believed that both retailers were not adhering to their obligations to allow customers to choose their retailer. 

We referred the matter to the retailer for resolution at a higher level and advised the customer that she could return to EWON if an agreed outcome could not be reached.

Similar complaints received by EWON

EWON has received similar complaints from other customers whose electricity or gas is provided through an embedded network. Their main concern is two-fold - it is difficult to leave their current retailer and find another retailer that can provide services to a customer of an embedded network. Customers have raised concerns about the limited retailer options that exist in an embedded network. In addition, customers tell us that the main reason that they would like to change retailers is because of high bills.

Some customers contacted us to obtain general information about embedded networks. In addition, many told us that they only became aware of the embedded network after moving in. Some customers felt that the retailers responsible for embedded networks should provide more information about changing retailers. This highlights the importance of customers being properly informed about embedded networks and how to change retailers, such as information about installing a new meter and potential costs.