Stark Case Study_Home Retail Group

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"Having previously worked with other energy data services providers, Stark stands head and shoulders above the rest for customer services, project management and precise energy reporting and managed services."

Richard Garner, Energy Manager, Home Retail Group

Background

Home Retail Group Plc has a combined property portfolio of over 1,100 sites with over 2,200 gas and electricity supplies. With an extensive portfolio, ensuring accurate supplier bills is critical for Home Retail Group. Stark’s Bureau Team specialises in validating utility bills, identifying errors and managing supplier disputes in recovering refunds due to our customers.


Challenge

Following dissatisfaction with the incumbent Bureau Services provider, Home Retail Group tendered for a new partner in 2013 and awarded the project to Stark after a strong proposal with recommendations and evidence where significant improvements could be made.

Stark was asked to adopt Home Retail Group’s metering portfolio in just three months. A cross-divisional team was mobilised that worked in partnership with WPD Smart Metering and Home Retail Group’s preferred gas AMR provider, Technolog, to ensure this deadline was met. Significant bespoke development was required to produce new software and translators to interpret the electronic billing formats sent by Home retail Group’s suppliers.


Solution

With Home Retail Group’s metering portfolio under Stark management and new software in place, Stark was able to upload Home Retail Group’s historic billing data into our in-houseBureau software for analysis. Furthermore, AMR data collected by Stark was actively integrated into this system to ensure Home Retail Group was billed using accurate data.

Stark’s Bureau Team now processes and validates over 2,000 electronic and 200 paper bills each month for Home Retail Group.


Results

In the first four months of providing this service Stark identified over £200,000 worth of historic billing errors. By the first anniversary, Stark had identified £400,000 of billing errors and recovered 80% of the funds due back to Home Retail Group. A further £260,000 in refunds is due to Home Retail Group, bringing the total value of billing errors to £660,000.

Stark continues to provide bureau and energy data services to Home Retail Group. SavenergyOnline has been instrumental in helping Home Retail Group achieve their CRC targets and Stark’s metering partners have repaired all meter faults quickly and efficiently, without negatively impacting data quality.