Frequently asked questions
Why choose Direct Power?
Attention to each individual client and their unique needs is what distinguishes us from the competition. We do not operate a large scale call centre, our team members have between 10-20 years of experience in the industry. Given this experience we have serviced every kind of client, secured all types of contracts and resolved every kind of problem common to this industry. We retain our clients year on year because we want what is best for the end user. We do not churn and burn our clients, we prefer to partner with them for the long haul. Our goal is to deliver a great price with great service year on year.
What type of clients do you work with?
If you are a business, we can work for you. We service all types of business users, from the smallest corner shop, schools, healthcare facilities, up to large multinational industrial companies with multiple locations throughout the UK. Each client receives individual attention from one of our consultants, no matter your line of business, Direct Power will be able to assist you.
What is the turnaround time on pricing?
This can be same day for the single site small user, or up to a week for the more complex multisite, or a large business client. We will work with you to manage time expectations once we know more about your needs. We work within the various suppliers standard turnaround times, and aim to deliver you a bespoke quote as promptly as possible.
What is the UIA, and is Direct Power a UIA approved business?
The UIA, or Utilities Intermediaries Association, is a trade association for energy consultants. The UIA maintains a register of Consultants and Brokers who meet and continue to meet the Associations requirements and agree and operate to the “Code of Practice”. Direct Power has fulfilled all UIA criteria and has signed to the Code of Practice. Click here for more information on the UIA.
What is ESOS and do I qualify?
ESOS stands for “Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme”. ESOS was introduced in 2015, and businesses that qualify need to engage in an energy assessment every four years, as well as notify the Environment Agency that they are compliant. Your business qualifies for ESOS if it employs 250 or more people, or employs less than 250 people but turns over more than £40 million a year AND has more than £34 million on the balance sheet. We work with qualified lead assessors that can help facilitate your energy assessments. More detailed information on ESOS can be found in our blog article.
What is a MOP?
MOP is an abbreviation for Meter Operator. A MOP is responsible for the installation and maintenance of the meter. MOP contracts are required for all Half Hourly Meters, it is a separate contract to the supply contract which covers the monthly bills. A five year term is a typical duration for a MOP, so it is not uncommon to forget about the MOP during the interim years. At Direct Power we help our clients by securing competitive MOP Contracts and ensuring all relevant parties are informed of the change. More detailed information on MOP contracts can be found in our blog article.
What is a DC?
DC stands for Data Collector, and is responsible for meter readings and maintaining historical meter reading records.
What is a Feed In Tariff or FIT?
This charge is applied by all suppliers, some incorporate this charge as a component of the p/kWh rate, others add it as a separate line item on the bill. Some fix this charge at point of contract, others pass through the charge as it fluctuates during the contract term. FIT charges cover the cost of operating the environmental programme that promotes the uptake of small scale, low carbon generation technologies, i.e. solar panels, wind energy etc.
What is a P272?
A P272 is an Ofgem approved industry code change. All suppliers are mandated to change all Non Half Hourly Meters with an 05-08 Profile Class that has AMR technology available to a Half Hourly Supply. You will be effected by this change if your MPAN number starts with an 05, 06, 07 or 08. These MPANS will be changed to Half Hourly by April 2017. Once the change has happened future bills will be based upon actual Half Hourly readings. In practical terms, each supplier has their own approach to this requirement, please contact Direct Power if you have any questions or concerns about this mandatory change. More detailed information on P272 can be found in our blog article.
What is are Variable Rates, Deemed Rates, Out Of Contract Rates, Non Contract Rates?
Each supplier has their own label for the rates they charge when you are not under contract. If you are not under contract please contact Direct Power so we can assist you to take control of the rates you are charged, and work with you to find cheaper rates and a supply contract that matches your requirements.
What are Capacity & Connection Agreements?
Half Hourly supplies are charged a capacity charge, which covers the amount of capacity the supply requires. You set the Agreed Supply Capacity (ASC), with the Distribution Network Operator (DNO). One of the services offered by Direct Power is a Capacity Review. Since you pay for each kVa of ASC whether you use it or not, it is vital that you set the ASC at an appropriate level. We will work with you to review historical usage, to establish a sensible ASC for both current and future needs. Ensuring you pay only for what you need and not any more. Using this approach we have saved clients thousands of pounds over the years. More detailed information on capacity reduction can be found in our blog article.
What if I am a Microbusiness and I have a complaint?
Microbusiness Complaint Handling Procedure
As per Ofgem, a non-domestic consumer is defined as a microbusiness if they: employ fewer than 10 employees (or their full time equivalent) and has an annual turnover or balance sheet no greater than €2 million; or uses no more than 100,000 kWh of electricity per year; or uses no more than 293,000 kWh of gas per year.
If you are a microbusiness and you have a complaint, it can fall into two categories: complaints in regard to suppliers and complaints in regards to TPIs.
Complaint about Supplier and/or other TPI
If your complaint is in regard to a supplier, you can file your complaint directly with the supplier, as well as reach out to assistance from the Ombudsman. Find out more about who they are and how they can assist directly at the Ombudson website. You can also see our post detailing more information HERE.
If you are in need of energy complaint assistance with a supplier or other TPI please get in touch. We will work with you to understand the nature of your complaint, and provide advice on how to progress towards a resolution. We have additional information on what we can do to help HERE.
Complaint about Direct Power’s Service
Direct Power is proud to report that we have a very happy and content customer base! Hopefully we are able to find a solution for all of our customers problems, but if not, we are more than happy to do what it takes to find a proper resolution. Should anything escalate into a formal complaint, rest assured that we are a member of the Utilities Intermediary Association and must adhere to their code on complaint resolution, and complaints are handled promptly and professionally. You can find out more about the UIA Code of Practice HERE.
Should a complaint arise in regard to the service you received from Direct Power, you are welcome to contact us by phone, or in writing (including email) in order for us to identify the underlying cause for concern. Once we receive a complaint we aim to acknowledge receipt and aim to resolve as quickly as possible. Sometimes complaints will take longer to address, in this situation we will keep you informed of the steps being taken to resolve the situation and advise a of realistic resolution time frames. Some concerns will require investigation and interaction with other parties such as the supplier. We always do our best to give a realistic turn-around with the given scenario and check in on a regular basis while the investigation is being conducted.
Should Direct Power not be able to resolve your complaint directly, or if all attempts at resolution are unsuccessful for more than eight weeks, you will be referred to the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman service is impartial and free for microbusinesses to use and more information can be found on their website HERE. Possible resolutions from the Ombudsman range from a simple apology, to compensation if justified. Direct Power adheres to the Ombudsman’s ADR scheme, and we would be happy to provide our official microbusiness complaint handling procedure upon request.
In addition, independent advice can be found at Citizens Advice HERE.
At Direct Power the aim to resolve all concerns before they escalate and are committed to continuous improvement!