The 5 Most Important Factors Large and Multi-Site Businesses Need to Consider When Choosing an Energy Supplier
Selecting a new energy supplier, particularly for large and multi-site businesses, is a key element in controlling a significant business spend category. Many factors including customer service, reputation, ease of switch, administration and additional added value services are all key considerations. In this blog we examine the five most important factors large and multi-site businesses should consider when choosing a new energy supplier.
In the years ahead, demonstrating your commitment to environmental sustainability across all areas of the business, from waste management to encouraging staff to cycle or walk to work, will be the one of the biggest areas of adjustment faced by UK organisations. Partnering with a 100% renewable energy supplier will form an essential part of demonstrating to your clients your green credentials. Alongside this the government’s future net zero targets will apply increasing pressure to organisations to take advantage of renewable energy suppliers, meaning they could be rewarded or penalised on their sustainable strategies.
Understanding the past to inform the present and future. Nearly every business across the country has been through extreme changes in consumption over the past 2 years. From the severe consumption reductions of the first national lock-down to rapid increases following the post-pandemic boom analysing your daily and annual consumption pattern over this period will give business leaders real-life analysis of how and where consumption can be reduced in the future. In turn this will assist in lowering unit rates and overall spend alongside assisting your overall sustainable strategy.
Annual consumption graph, showing customers overall usage increase post Summer 2020 lockdown.
Average daily consumption graphs. Displaying variances between Summer and Winter usage, along with differences between weekday/ weekends.
3) Price/ Contract Structure
Understanding your aims as a business, growth plans, potential expansion, and attitudes to risk (and potential rewards) are all key factors in determining your optimum contract structure. Selecting the correct structure will give you control over your energy spend and through using a supplier who gives you direct market access ensure that you are able to mitigate cost increases in a rising market and take full advantage of falling bearish market conditions.
One hidden element when taking an energy contract is the cost of management and administration. This element should form a key component of the decision-making process, no more so than for multi-site operations. Addressing this has 2 main advantages. Aligning end dates with 1 single supplier will:
a) Give significant cost advantages when tendering. Business who are tendering significant volumes will see cost reductions compared to tendering multiple times throughout the year for smaller groups.
b) Reduce the time admin and finance departments spend processes invoices, dealing with multiple suppliers over different issues.
For example, Independent Vet Care, a key client of United Gas & Power has over 1000 sites and prior to becoming a client of UGP had different contract end dates, different bill dates and invoices being submitted randomly across the year so had become an administration nightmare. UGP submitted a full proposal that contained these key components;
- One single, consolidated billing date and process
- A portal that IVC could access directly for site or consolidated information
- 100% renewable power
- Dedicated IVC resources for future account management, with direct line access
- Smart meter installation across all sites
- Full and visible management information
- Aligned contract end dates for all sites
You can read the full case study by clicking here. Therefore you should look for energy companies who are prepared to give you access to a portal that gives you all your information and dedicated account management.
5) Direct Supplier/ Live Market Access
This means that you have access to the organisations trading floor and expertise when it comes to energy trading. In this respect you’ll get advice and foresight on what the market is doing and can often lock in great energy deal for up to 5 years in advance.
United Gas & Power work with many large and multi-site businesses and we have the experience and knowledge to handle even the most complex of requirements. If you want to discuss further please click here to request a quote or click here for more information.