MSE News: Ofgem orders Scottish Power to pay customers £15m for IT failures

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MSE_LukeMSE_Luke MSE Staff
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Scottish Power has been ordered to pay £15 million to customers for previous IT failings...
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'Ofgem orders Scottish Power to pay customers £15m for IT failures'
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  • ConsumeristConsumerist Forumite
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    Co-operative Energy :eek: kindly take note. Ofgem will confiscate your pocket money while you snigger all the way to the bank.
    >:)Warning: In the kingdom of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.
  • 50Twuncle50Twuncle Forumite
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    Who decided exactly who is out of pocket due to this SP blunder ?
    Scottish Power, themselves ...
  • davidgmmafandavidgmmafan Forumite
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    Another day another supplier going onto an expensive new billing system that causes chaos. Why don't any of them learn from the errors made by their competitors? It's almost like it's not a competitive market or something.

    Also what happens to the folk who flog such systems - do they just ride off into the sunset with a bag full of money?

    The only consolation is that there aren't many suppliers left who haven't made the move, but that's a prety a damning appraisal if that's the only positive I can find...
    Mixed Martial Arts is the greatest sport known to mankind and anyone who says it is 'a bar room brawl' has never trained in it and has no idea what they are talking about.
  • badmemorybadmemory Forumite
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    They will accept the lowest bid. Most probably offshore anyway so little real comeback. They have already ridden off into the sunset. We are the ones who will land up paying as usual. Buy cheap, buy it twice. Pity businesses STILL haven't learnt this. Makes you wonder how they can still be in business. But then if they are all doing it there is little point in us (the great stitched up consumer) changeing to any of the others.
  • Although I believe SP went with the same suppliers as npower, IBM GS & SAP, these are hardly fly-by-night organisations. It's more likely that the problems stem from catastrophic failures in project management on all sides (scoping, speccing, delivery, testing and control). After that, the cascade effect once the system is live is usually pretty unstoppable. Ultimately, as the client, senior heads should roll at SP, but we all know that's not going to happen.


    Looks as if it might be time to register for my (meagre) slice of the pot (fat chance)...


    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/bills-and-utilities/gas-electric/scottish-power-billing-fiasco-here-are-some-of-the-firms-unbelie/
  • I worked for Scottish Power in the call centre. The software they used had more bugs than a David Attenborough special on insects. They actually had two 'operating systems', one was not enough so they add on another system which none of the long standing workers liked.

    Whilst I was employed, we had a lot of people whose direct debits had just stopped, this went on for up to a year leading to accumulated debts in varying amounts. We got told to offer compensation IF customers complained. There was a sliding scale of compensation linked to how much customers complained.

    Worse still was the 'promise' system. This may happen when a call centre worker is unable to complete certain processes. As a new starter, I was horrified to see promises we made end up in the paper bin.

    The workers are employed by Capita, why this happens is well known, companies prefer agencies to do the hiring, firing and paperwork. Take Capita away and employ people direct, train them up properly (training was a joke) and pay them more. The start wage (before the national living wage) was £7.03p. I do not know what Capita got for each worker but Scottish Power are throwing good money away.

    Most of the call centre workers were decent people, like anyone just trying to earn a living.

    Sadly, the management and higher ups are only concerned with profits, and cutting corners goes hand in hand with such ambitions.

    In my humble opinion, Capita are not the best choice for managing workforces, employing people direct makes more sense but we live in a time were sense and common sense are lacking.
  • hyberniahybernia Forumite
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    I worked for Scottish Power in the call centre. The software they used had more bugs than a David Attenborough special on insects. They actually had two 'operating systems', one was not enough so they add on another system which none of the long standing workers liked. . .

    . . . Worse still was the 'promise' system. This may happen when a call centre worker is unable to complete certain processes. As a new starter, I was horrified to see promises we made end up in the paper bin. The workers are employed by Capita, why this happens is well known, companies prefer agencies to do the hiring, firing and paperwork. . . .

    . . . Most of the call centre workers were decent people, like anyone just trying to earn a living.Sadly, the management and higher ups are only concerned with profits, and cutting corners goes hand in hand with such ambitions.

    Thank you for the insights. Family members' experience bears out everything you have said, because the arrogant contempt of this Spanish-owned company is institutionalised from the top down. Not the bottom up. That any senior manager is still in a job after this latest so-called "fine" -- though it seems, they all are -- is evidence aplenty that the regulatory system isn't working and that the measures taken against rogue operators like ScottishPower are nowhere near punitive enough.

    Members of my family had cause to deal only once with a ScottishPower call centre. The representative who too that call was courteous, thorough, articulate and responsive. She sorted out a potentially serious issue within 10 minutes.

    Months after that, it seemed ScottishPower had no record of the telephone conversation. The issue was now very serious. Not 'potentially' so.

    Because it was apparent that a telephone conversation with a call centre employee counts for nothing at ScottishPower, family members realised the only option open to them was to have everything in writing.

    They entered into an exchange of emails with different individuals, not one of whom appeared to have English as their first language. With the exception of one individual, the customer service (email) representatives were the exact opposite of the call centre representative. They were discourteous, indifferent, inarticulate and unresponsive. One of them very blatantly. . . lied.

    Having read your explanation of how the call centre function operates, I wonder if you could shed light on how the customer services (email) function operates?

    Is it located in the UK or has it been offshored to India?
    Does it use British staff or staff local to the offshore location?
    Are staff directly employed by Scottish Power or are they agency employees, with the agency acting as a subcontractor to Scottish Power?
    Is the name of this agency / subcontractor known -- and are they employed by any other UK energy supplier?

    Info appreciated -- thanks.:)
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