(Meet the team, from left to right: Ollie, Rachael, Kirsty, Jess, Carolyn, Keith, Helen, Chris, Keely and Katie)

On Wednesday and Thursday of this week, Affinity for Business attended EMEX, The Energy Management Exhibition at Excel, London. It was a great two day event and we thought we would share some of our highlights with you.

On Wednesday, whilst the team manned our stand and started some great conversations, our Managing Director, Helen Gillett, participated in a live onsite panel, where the four panelists discussed the actions some retailers are taking to bring benefits to customers following the market opening. The other spokespeople of the panel were:

 

  • Bill Clarke, Sales Director at SES Business Water
  • Jacob Tompkins, Chief Technology Officer at The Water Retail Company
  • Siobhan Kennedy-Hall, Business Development Manager at water2business

One of the main challenges discussed amongst the panel regarded communicating accurate information about the deregulation of the market and the benefits it can bring customers. Helen made the point that there’s a lot of misinformation out there and strengthening the dialogue between retailer and customer is difficult considering there is a lack of consistent information being circulated across the board. Helen raised some great points when addressing this challenge, explaining that good customer service and clear visibility between retailer and customer is key. She also explained how Affinity for Business have been using digital channels and direct mailer to contact existing and potential customers.

It was a great turnout for the panel and as our stand was right next to it (see the pic below) we could silently cheer Helen on from the sidelines….

This was followed by a fantastic customer panel, discussing the different decisions and experiences businesses had encountered when deciding whether or not to switch retailers. The panel included:

  • Ian Gregory, Head of Utilities, University of Birmingham
  • James Tiernan, Group Energy & Environment Manager, Unite Students
  • Adam Yarnall, Network Utilities Manager, Camping and Caravanning Club

The panelists all agreed that the financial savings on water bills were marginal and therefore the deciding factor for them when choosing to change retailers lay in good customer service. Some called out the fact that they had been particularly dissatisfied with their current retailer and so had moved away from them.  The businesses that had changed retailers had no regrets and recommended all businesses weigh up their options, as the admin efforts of transitioning was worth the outcome. The customers also discussed their thoughts on bundling all of their utilities into one bill. Interestingly, all of the customers on the panel thought it was too soon to think about that and felt that separate utility bills for energy and electricity were easier to manage, especially on a large scale for multi-sites.

 

 

(Day 2 team, from left to right: Helen, Eamonn, Nabeel, Hannah, Adam, Keely)

Thank you to everyone who visited our stand at EMEX (appropriately named H20!). The team really enjoyed meeting everyone and will be following up with the great contacts we made. We also gave out some water related goodie bags, so we are hoping lots of people were shielding themselves from this morning’s downpour using our Affinity for Business branded brollies!

Remember, if you would like to speak to someone at Affinity for Business about our clean and waste water services and how we could help your business – please don’t hesitate to get in touch. One of our friendly team would love to talk you through your options.