Utilitywise CEO, Brendan Flattery, explains the changes in the English water market and why you should take advantage for your business
Having joined Utilitywise in October last year, I am still a newcomer to the utilities market, however I am reminded daily of the significant opportunities that exist for all businesses, to get more value from their utilities suppliers – but only if they know how.
On April 1, the business water market in England deregulated. Behind the scenes, there is a lot going on; new suppliers are getting ready to enter the market and joint ventures are being set up between existing suppliers, which will appear as new brands that you won’t previously have heard of.
Our job at Utilitywise is to signpost you through a maze of different and possibly confusing offerings and make sure you find the deal that is best for your business, so here’s a guide to help you make the most of the water market deregulation.
What does deregulation actually mean? The existing regional water suppliers each must split their businesses into two parts, creating a wholesale arm (that supplies the water) and a retail arm (that handles the billing and provides customer service).
Upwards of 1.2 million English businesses can now choose the retailer that they want to work with. In the North East, your water will still be supplied by Northumbrian water, however you can choose another more competitive retailer to handle your billing and customer service.
What’s in it for me?
First of all, by shopping around, you will be able to save money on the retail services – money that is better in your pocket.
Second, we expect significant improvements in customer service. Our independent survey revealed that only one in four businesses is satisfied with the service that they receive and 40% have experienced billing errors that create hassle and waste time.
Third, if you have multiple sites across different water regions, you’ll no longer need to receive bills from each of the different water suppliers – all bills can be consolidated into one single bill and there is only one number to call for service.
And fourth, there are some great multi-utility offerings available across gas, electricity and water which could provide overall savings of as much as 25% off existing bills with cashback up to £400.
How easy is it to switch supplier/ renegotiate my deal?
With the right support, it is extremely easy – Utilitywise has built a successful business by taking all of the switching/renegotiation away from our customers. We find the right deals for your needs and we’re used to driving a hard bargain, so you can get on with running your business.
Are there any risks involved?
The first thing to say is that you don’t need new pipes to be laid! You’ll still receive the same water through the same pipes and from the same reservoirs. The only change you will be making is to appoint a new retailer. However, you don’t necessarily need to switch supplier to save money – Utilitywise can renegotiate better deals with existing suppliers too, so there is no risk.
So, dive in and take advantage
Having run small, medium and large businesses myself, I know how important it is to run a tight ship. I also know how much our customers value the convenience factor. My challenge to you is: don’t let this opportunity pass you by – put my team of experts at Utilitywise to the test and see what we can do for your business, you’ll be amazed at the money and time savings we can deliver.