Australian Energy Providers Call Centre Rankings August 2023

As well as the Call Centre Ranking results below, ACXPA Members also have access to a range of additional insights, including all the monthly reports, trend data, additional performance metrics, a downloadable spreadsheet and lots more!

Learn more about our Membership Options >

Energy Providers August 2023 Call Centre Rankings

With energy prices hitting record levels in Australia there are plenty of us who are shopping around for a better deal.

In the first of our Call Centre Rankings for Energy Providers report, in August 2023 we conducted a number of Mystery Shopping calls into Energy Providers using a scenario of a customer looking to make a switch from their existing provider – so a potential new customer opportunist and more revenue for them.

You can read more about the assessment criteria and methodology here, but the quick version is we make random calls to Energy Providers and assess both accessibility (how easy it was to connect) and the customer service/quality of the interaction when speaking to a live agent.

Despite the chance to win over a new customer, the results revealed some disappointing results for some providers:

  • Trying to get through to an Energy Provider was rated as ‘Below Standards’ however, once connected, the sector was rated as ‘Meeting Standard’.
  • The lead performer overall was Simply Energy with an overall rating of 69.7%, a stark contrast to the lowest-ranked score of 22.8% for AGL.
  • The Average Wait time across the Energy Sector was 02:15 minutes with Simple Energy’s average wait time leading the sector at 00:15 minutes through to the longest average wait time of 05:32 minutes for Energy Australia.
  • 22% of calls were not answered within the 10-minute threshold, resulting in missed opportunities for the Energy Providers and a frustrating experience for potentially new customers.  Not a great first impression!
  • The majority of Energy Providers had two layers of IVR menu options with Alinta Energy the highest with four layers.  There may be some opportunities for energy providers to reduce the number of layers for new customers to make the process easier for them.
  • The majority of all providers rated highly for the ‘Energy’ competency with an average of 87.5%, with the ‘Engage’ competency ranked the lowest at 41.1%.

Energy Providers August 2023 Key Results

The summary data for the August 2023 Australian Energy Providers call centre performance is below.

Overall Ranking

Average Score

Energy Providers

0
%

#1 Ranked Call Centre

Simply Energy

0
%

Lowest Ranked Call Centre

AGL

0
%

Quality Score

Average Score

Energy Providers

0
%

Highest Score

Red Energy

0
%

Lowest Score

Alinta Energy

0
%

Quality Summary August 2023

The quality of the customer interactions across the Energy sector was rated as ‘Meeting Standard’ with a score of 63.9%, the highest rated of all industry sectors.

    • The lead performer for quality was Red Energy (75.4%) followed closely by Energy Australia (70.6%) with Alinta Energy (56.3%) and AGL (57.1%) rated the lowest.
    • Key Results across each of the quality metrics:
      • Engage (41.1%) – The lead performer was Red Energy (75.0%), and the lowest rated was AGL (0%).
      • Discover (66.7%) – The lead performer was Energy Australia (100%), and the lowest rated was Origin Energy (44.4%)
      • Educate (69.0%) – The lead performer was Origin Energy (83.3%), and the lowest rated was Alinta Energy (58.3%)
      • Close (46.5%) – The lead performer was AGL (66.7%), and the lowest rated was Red Energy (33.3%)
      • Energy (87.5%) – The lead performer was Red Energy (100%), and the lowest rated was AGL and Energy Australia (75%)

Accessibility Score

Average Score

Energy Providers

0
%

Highest Score

Simply Energy

0
%

Lowest Score

AGL

0
%

Accessibility Summary August 2023

  • Accessibility across the sector was rated at 50.2% (Below Standard) with Simply Energy the leader (89.2%) and AGL the lowest (9.6%).
  • Average Wait times across the sector was 02:15 minutes, led by Simply Energy (0:15 minutes) with Energy Australia the longest wait times (05:32 minutes).
  • 22% of calls were not answered within the 10-minute threshold with AGL only answering 33% of our calls. Red Energy and Energy Australia answered 67% of our calls resulting in lost sales opportunities.
  • Talk time was the second highest across the industry with an average talk time of 07:10 minutes with Alinta the shortest calls (05:18 minutes) through to Energy Australia (10:23 minutes).
  • The average IVR Navigation time was 01:04 minutes with Origin the quickest (0:31 minutes) through to AGL (2:26 seconds).
  • The majority of Energy Providers had two layers of IVR menus for customers to navigate, Alinta had the most with four.

Average Wait Time

Average Wait Time

Energy Providers

0
Minutes

Shortest Wait Time

Alinta Energy

0
Minutes

Longest Wait Time*

Energy Australia

0
Minutes

*We disconnect calls that go beyond a 10-minute wait time, so the actual wait times may be longer. ACXPA Members can see the percentage of calls not answered/exceeding the threshold in the members-only exclusive data.

Please also note that contact centres often have different queues for different services or functions (i.e. Sales or Service/New or Existing customers) and the experience can be different for each queue.

Exclusive Members-only Insights

You need an ACXPA Membership to see this exclusive data!

ACXPA Members gain instant access to additional Energy sector data including the detailed data for four random Energy providers each month for you to benchmark against, previous monthly reports and a range of additional ACXPA Membership benefits to ensure you have the leading insights, best-practice tips and more to help you succeed.

Energy Providers Call Centre Rankings Redacted

Additional member-only insights you’ll instantly see include: 

  • Calls Answered Percentage
  • IVR Navigation Time & Layers
  • Average Talk Times
  • Quality scores by each of the five different competencies
  • The scores for the four behaviours of the ‘Engage’ Quality Competency
  • Accessibility scores by each of the five different competencies
  • Access to all previous month’s data
  • Monthly Trend Results

ACXPA Business Memberships start from just $497 per year and are packed with value!

You’ll gain access to leading industry insights every month, live symposiums and workshops with leading contact centre experts, a library of expert videos on contact centres and CX best practices you can watch on demand, a range of downloadable resources, discounts to expert training courses, networking events and lots more.

 , thanks for being an ACXPA Member – you can view and download the report below!  

Australian Energy Providers Call Centre Rankings August 2023 Results

What type of scenarios do we use to conduct the Mystery Shopping calls?

The scenarios we use are typically based on new sales opportunities.

How does the scoring work?

You can learn more about the framework we use here >

How many calls are assessed?

For the public monthly report, we include at least three calls per council – as more Energy Providers sign up for the service, more calls will be included.

When you sign up for the CX Contact Centre Benchmarking service, you will receive at least six calls for every Energy Provider included in the report.  If you’d rather have a larger sample size, please refer to our customised Benchmarking service >

Why aren’t all the Energy Providers included?

We’d love to have all the Energy Providers included; however, conducting independent Mystery Shopping is expensive! We randomly chose Energy Providers to commence our program with, and as (or if) other Energy Providers sign up to our CX Contact Centre Benchmarking program, we’ll be able to publish a larger sample size each month.

How can we improve our score?

Our Mystery Shopping program has been designed to provide Energy Providers with the insights they need to improve performance! You’ll receive detailed information on your performance against over 48 individual elements, so you know exactly where to focus, and we also include a quarterly report that provides you with personalised key recommendations on areas to focus on.

We also offer a range of training courses that can help teach your frontline employees the skills they need to deliver great customer service or improve sales:

How do I get my contact centre included?

We have a fixed-price service starting from $1,297 per month that will provide you with information on your contact centre, as well as a benchmark of your performance against a minimum of five other Energy Providers that you can nominate. Learn more >

How do I order the service?

We have an online ordering form that makes it easy to order the service, nominate the Australian Energy Providers you’d like to benchmark against, who you’d like the reports to be sent to etc. View the online order form >

How do I access the full data for the Australian Energy Providers?

ACXPA Business Members get full access to the summary monthly data for Energy Providers (and other sectors) along with a host of other benefits. An ACXPA Business Membership starts from just $497 per year and includes five individual memberships you can allocate to key employees who could benefit from gaining access to leading industry insights for contact centres, customer experience (CX), digital service, and in-person customer service.

Is there someone I can speak to to learn more? 

Absolutely! If you’d like to speak to someone further about the Benchmarking Service, please get in touch with our General Manager of Quality Insights, Simon Blair – 0407 002 113 or [email protected]

What type of scenarios do we use to conduct the Mystery Shopping calls?

Most of our mystery shopping scenarios involve new sales opportunities where we don’t need to disclose account numbers or personal information.

Why do you hang up at either 10 minutes?

All our Mystery Shopping calls are conducted live by our accredited Mystery Shoppers who are all based in Australia. We cut off the calls at 10 minutes for two key reasons:

  1. Research has shown that these are at the end of typical times customers will wait before they hang up, especially a sales queue when there are alternatives in the marketplace.
  2. It’s expensive! As we use real human beings to conduct the Mystery Shopping call, it’s simply not practical to pay them often for hours (hello Centrelink!) whilst waiting for the call to be answered. So unless we get a very generous sponsor that enables us to wait the full time, we thought this was a reasonable decision.

Do Australian Energy Providers really care about the service they provide?

As a competitive marketplace, it means there are a range of different approaches. As a commoditised product (it’s the same electricity when you switch on the lights no matter who you purchase it from!), price is, of course, an important consideration.

But smart Energy Retailers are also realising that providing a good customer experience can be a competitive advantage.  But sometimes, whether it’s through a lack of resources or skills, or a strategic choice, the Contact Centre experience that is delivered is well below industry standards.

If, for example, Australian Energy Providers choose to under-resource the contact centre, or use offshore call centres, and can pass those savings onto you in the form of cheaper electricity, that may be acceptable to some consumers who are happy to forgo some service to receive cheaper prices.

We don’t get involved in the strategy of each business, we simply report on the data against industry standards.

We do, however, believe that delivering a better customer experience is not only is it good for you as a consumer, but it’s also good for the business as all of the latest CX statistics will confirm.

Why does ACXPA publish results each month?

Our mission is to improve the level of customer experience in Australia so by publishing the results monthly, we’ll continue to ensure that Energy Providers are accountable for the level of customer service they are providing and to enable consumers to make an informed choice.

What type of services does ACXPA offer?

In addition to the Mystery Shopping CX Benchmarking, we offer a range of services and resources for people working in contact centres, customer experience (CX), digital service and in-person customer service/retail. You can learn more about us here >

How to gain exclusive insights for your Energy Business

If you’d like to gain insights specifically for your contact centre performance, and benchmark your results against other Energy Providers, we’ve got a new, cost-effective, fixed-price benchmarking service that makes it easy!

Starting from just $1,297 per month, by signing up for our Contact Centre CX Benchmarking Service, you’ll receive the following:

  • Six Mystery Shopping calls into your call centre each month at random times and days where you’ll receive the full assessment against 48 metrics, our quality assessor’s notes, the employee’s name (where provided) and the full call recordings.
  • Six Mystery Shopping calls each into five other Energy Providers (a total of 30 calls) that YOU nominate so you can benchmark your performance against other Energy Providers that matter the most to you.
  • Aggregate data from all the other Energy Providers we assess providing you with Energy sector-wide results to further compare your results to.
  • A monthly email with data to track your performance along with the call recordings.
  • A quarterly report containing insights and trends that are easy to understand, along with actionable recommendations to help improve your performance.
  • An optional Quarterly Insights workshop for your team (conducted live via Zoom) that can provide additional insights, coaching and guidance.
  • Access to training to help you improve results.

CX Roundtables - Upcoming Guest

Live and interactive sessions for customer experience professionals in Australia.

Upcoming CX Roundtable Steven Arnold bw

Contact Centre Manager Roundtables - Upcoming Guest

Live and interactive sessions for contact centre professionals in Australia.

Upcoming Contact Centre Roundtable - Scott Wooden

Next Members Symposium Livestream: Tuesday, 21st May, 2024, 13:30 AEST

The Members Symposium sessions are only available to ACXPA Members! 

ACXPA Members can watch the symposium live, and, can watch any of the sessions at any time in their Video Library. 

Discover which membership is right for you >

Preview of upcoming Symposium Sessions:

Nadine Power, ACXPA National Advisory Board Member

IVR Best Practice

Over 90% of contact centres are using an IVR (Press 1 for this, press 2 for that), and we've encountered many contact centres with over four layers of options for customers to select from. In this session, Nadine will be sharing some best practice tips on IVR design for 2024.

Presented by Nadine Power, Chief Product Officer, Datagamz (and ACXPA National Advisory Board Member)

ACXPA National Advisory Board Member Simon Blair

Tips to Boost Engagement on Calls

Of the five quality competencies we assess as part of the Australian Call Centre Rankings, the 'ENGAGE' competency from the Australian Contact Centre Quality Standards has consistently been at the bottom of the rankings throughout 2023 and into 2024.

In this session, Simon will provide some tips that can be shared with agents on how to increase engagement with customers at the start of calls.

Presented by Simon Blair, General Manager Quality Insights, ACXPA

More sessions announced soon! 

(If you're interested in speaking at one of our events, click here to learn more >)

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