The relationship of consumers with our electricity, gas or telecommunications services distribution companies It is not exactly the best possible, something that usually causes many complaints among customers and has led to regulations such as the prohibition of certain unwanted commercial calls.
However, the difficulties in making ourselves understood With our interlocutor, who is often also a machine, carrying out procedures such as changing electric or gas companies or simply changing our contracted rate can take forever and often lead us to desperation.
It is not a new problem, but it seems that things do not improve as they should over the years. Or at least that’s what The CNMC has confirmed after analyzing the customer service services of the energy marketers.
Lack of transparency in the management of simple procedures
In its latest report published this September, the CNMC has carried out an analysis of consumer service using the mystery shopper technique. That is, he has posed as a fictitious customer who makes purchases of energy and other services as well as queries or complaints through the companies’ telephone and Internet customer service services.
The Commission has made more than 850 transactions to evaluate these communication channels between companies and users, compliance with regulations and good practices of companies. The results? Well, many of us have already suffered.
To begin with, the public body points out that there continues to be considerable difficulty or impossibility of both contract the regulated market rates entirely online (gas and electricity), as well as finding the basic contract data in the private areas of the websites of most marketers have been common deficiencies during the analysis.
In telephone consultations it has been detected that pre-contractual information is insufficient in several marketers and, sometimes, there are direct contracts in the call itself that prevent the client from consulting the details of the offer.
Some companies have also provided confusing information about the electricity market adjustment mechanism of Royal Decree-Law 10/2022 by commercial agents, which many times They don’t know how to tell you if the prices of the electricity rates include taxes, compensation for the gas capetc.
In the case of one marketer (no names have been given) it has been detected that he did not have a telephone channel, and in the case of another, excessive telephone waiting times for withdrawal and claim requests.
The CNMC has finally indicated that it will inform companies of the deficiencies detected and check whether they have implemented the corresponding corrective measures, but it also proposes the following regulatory changes:
- Compel regulated marketers to have a channel over the Internet that allows you to contract completely (and not partially) the regulated gas and electricity rate.
- Force marketers to record the entire call commercial, regardless of who originates it, to include pre-contractual information with the basic characteristics of the offer.
Cover image | Johannes Plenio
More information | CNMC
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