Water Supplier Deregulation in England coming in April 2017 – and what it means for your business

UtilityWise have performed a survey in October of this year targeting decision makers for companies of various sizes in the UK. This was done in light of the upcoming changes in the water market for consumers and businesses, whereby the market is set to become deregulated. End users will have free choice of supplier in April 2017.
The survey was a 5-minute online survey taken by 605 business decision makers. Some of the key results are very interesting and paint a good picture of the level at which people are informed about the upcoming changes.
Summarized, the key findings are that awareness of deregulation is low, few people understand what deregulation means for their business; there is a need for more education on the impacts of deregulation; despite this, many businesses are considering a switch in provider in 2017; key drivers to switch are price, and bundled services.
Many of the businesses surveyed are dissatisfied with their current choice in water supplier when it comes to prices. Interestingly, the Scottish respondents had the less faith in their suppliers offering better prices than some English customers. The Scottish market has been deregulated since 2008 and England is now following this model.
Over 35% of businesses have had billing issues with their current providers, with medium and large businesses having reported the most issues in this respect. Being able to chose a provider based on the customer service they offer is a key component of deregulation. It is hoped that suppliers will up their game and offer more reliable services to the end users, preventing the headaches associated with the current model.
Under half, 41%, of the respondents who indicated they had had billing problems say that they were satisfied with the way their billing issues were resolved. This leads 59% of the businesses who weren’t satisfied.
Any business can, starting in April 2017, choose their water supplier. Find out more about the shift and the changes on http://UtilityWise.com/water