Home Energy are committed to respecting your privacy and complying with applicable data protection and privacy laws. This notice outlines how “we” collect and use your information.
What personal information may we collect about you?
Most of the information we collect about you is obtained directly from you when you enter it via a website or write to us. However, we may also collect information we observe about you, for example via cookies when you visit our website. We may also collect information about you from public sources, for example from the Land Registry.
Below we list some of the most common categories of personal information we may collect about you.
- Your contact details (including, name, date of birth, title, postal addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses) to keep in touch with you and/or contract with you;
- Your age, gender, employment history, work experience, aspirations, leisure and interests that you provide us when applying for a job at Home Energy
- Financial information from an individual in order to fulfil any contractual obligations we have with you or with a view to enter into a contract with you. This can include your payment details including your bank details;
- Any personal information you choose to give us when contacting Home Energy or when you complete any registration processes and/or provide us with your views and opinions during a consultation;
- Other operational personal data created, obtained, or otherwise processed in the course of carrying out our business activities, recordings of telephone conversations, logs of visitors.
How do we use your personal information?
We collect and use information about you when you visit our website, utilise our services, make customer enquiries or send other communications, register for information or services or when you respond to communications by us (such as questionnaires or surveys).
Your relationship with us will determine why we collect particular information about you. We may be required by law to collect certain information; require it in order to perform a contract, or prior to entering into a contact with you; or use it for our legitimate business interests where these do not override your rights or interest.
We may collect and use your information to:
- Effectively respond to and deal with your query in the event that you contact us;
- Supply you with services that you have requested;
- Manage our assets which affect your property;
- Ensure you see relevant and interesting content on our website(s) using your electronic information (cookies) in line with our website terms and conditions;
- Report and manage information for budgeting and forecasting;
- Process information that is required or requested by regulatory bodies or law enforcement agencies;
- Investigate, respond to and/or process any complaints, claims for loss, or damage;
- Prevent and/or detect crime;
- Facilitate your access to our on-site facilities;
- Monitor and/or record conversations with customers for staff training and/or audit purposes;
- Any other processing for which you have given your consent, for example receiving marketing information or surveys.
Who has access to your personal information?
Your information will be processed by employees of Home Energy in order to fulfil our obligations to you as outlined in this notice.
How long will you keep my personal information?
Information is only kept as long as necessary for the period it is required. When deciding how long we keep your information we take into account any minimum retention requirements set out in law; for example, financial and statutory reporting requirements mean we must keep certain records for a period of 7 years. Depending on the purpose for which we hold your hold your personal data, retention periods may vary.
If you have any queries in relation to this notice, or need more information please do not hesitate to contact us at:
Effective date: July 2018
Equal Opportunities Policy
Equality and Diversity
The Company is committed to achieving a working environment which provides equality of opportunity and freedom from unlawful, subjective or unjustifiable discrimination. We will not tolerate direct or indirect discrimination, victimisation or harassment (see definitions below) and aim to encourage full participation and contribution to corporate life from our diverse employees.
- Direct discrimination occurs where someone is treated less favourably because of a Protected Characteristic (sex, age, race, religion or belief, disability, sexual orientation, marriage or civil partnership status, maternity or gender reassignment) in relation to his or her employment. Direct discrimination may be intentional or unintentional.
- Indirect discrimination occurs where a provision, criterion or practice applied to everyone puts individuals with a particular protected characteristic at a disadvantage and this cannot be justified – e.g. insisting that applicants for a position must be at least six feet tall (which would disadvantage females and some racial groups) unless the job really needed somebody to be that tall.
- Victimisation occurs were an individual is treated less favourably than colleagues because they have taken action to assert their statutory rights or assisted a colleague in that regard.
- Harassment occurs where an individual is subjected to unwanted conduct that has the purpose or effect of violating that person’s dignity, or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for the individual. The harassment can relate to the victim or to another person such as a colleague or a family member. This means that even comments or actions aimed at another person can constitute harassment of an employee, and therefore be unlawful.
We aim to ensure that all decisions relating to recruitment, promotion, development, assessment, benefits, pay, terms and conditions of employment, redundancy and dismissals, are based upon the capabilities, qualifications, experience, skills and productivity of our employees. We also aim to provide a fair and equal service to all our customers and to treat them all with equal respect and dignity.
We expect every employee within the business to treat their colleagues, customers, business contacts and members of the public with dignity and respect. Any employee who behaves in a discriminatory manner towards another person or group of people will be guilty of gross misconduct and will be subject to disciplinary action.
If you believe that you may have been unfairly discriminated against or harassed, we encourage you to pursue your complaint through our grievance procedure.
Bullying and Harassment
In order to create an equal and diverse working environment, every employee is expected to respect the feelings and sensibilities of others, and not to engage in any activities that may be interpreted as bullying, harassment or victimisation.
Bullying and harassment may be based on discriminatory grounds including sex, race, disability, age, sexual orientation etc., or may be for other reasons. They can cause the other person to feel distressed, offended, humiliated, or intimidated, and can result in serious emotional or physical harm. Such behaviours are unacceptable within the workplace.
You must remember that everybody’s interpretation of “bullying” or “harassment” will differ, and what may be acceptable to one person may not be acceptable to another. Bullying and harassment are defined by how the victim feels, and not by what the perpetrator intended.
Examples of behaviour which may constitute harassment or bullying include, but are not limited to:
- Offensive remarks, verbal abuse, insults and threats, or practical jokes (whether spoken or written, and whether face to face or by email, text, or using Social Media of any kind)
- Ridicule, name calling, mimicry (e.g. of a foreign accent) or belittling of an individual on any grounds
- Jibes or jokes referring to personal traits or appearance, racial origins, skin colour etc.
- Exclusion from normal workplace conversation or social events (“sending somebody to Coventry”) or refusal to work alongside another person on account of their personal characteristics
- Creation, circulation or display of lewd or offensive images or jokes
- Physical or psychological intimidation or attack
- Unwelcome discussion or insinuations about an individual’s personal life
- Unfair allocation of work and responsibilities (whether too much or too little)
- Uninvited, patronising or unnecessary assistance with work
- Prejudging an individual’s capabilities without reference to him/her
- Mischievous interference with personal equipment or possessions
- Suggestive comments, sexual innuendo, foul language or expletives of a sexual nature
- Unwelcome advances, attention, invitations or demands for sex
- Unnecessary and unwanted physical contact, indecent assault or rape
- Incitement of others to indulge in any of the above behaviours.
Suggested ways to deal with a perpetrator
If you are suffering from minor harassment and feel able to confront the perpetrator directly, you could start by making it clear to that person that you consider their behaviour unacceptable and ask them to desist immediately. This may be done verbally or in writing. If in writing, a copy should be sent to your manager, and the letter (or email) should state the name of the harasser, the nature of the harassment, dates and times when it occurred, the names of witnesses to any incidents of harassment, and any action already taken by you to try to stop the harassment.
Alternatively, you may approach your manager informally to discuss any form of harassment or bullying you are suffering or may have witnessed in the workplace, or you may make a formal complaint through the Grievance Procedure. If your manager is the alleged perpetrator, or if you feel awkward approaching your manager in regard to bullying or harassment, you may instead write to one of the non-executive Directors.
All complaints will be handled in a timely and confidential manner. There will be a full investigation, and if the complaint is considered to be justified appropriate action (including disciplinary action) will be taken against the perpetrator.
An allegation of harassment or bullying is a serious matter. You will be protected from intimidation, victimisation or discrimination for making a complaint or assisting in an investigation. Retaliating against an employee for complaining about harassment or assisting in an investigation is a disciplinary offence.
However, if your complaint is shown to be malicious or made in bad faith (e.g. to get somebody innocent into trouble or cause them stress), disciplinary action will be taken against you.
Modern Slavery Policy
This is Home Energy Trading Ltd’s (Home Energy) statement on slavery and human trafficking, made pursuant to section 54(1) of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (the Act).
Home Energy fully supports the aims of the Act and recognises that slavery and human trafficking is a global issue which needs to be addressed by all companies within all industries.
Our supply chains include the following which may be relevant to modern slavery:
- The procurement of electricity and gas for Home Energy’s retail business through our wholesale energy providers.
- The manufacture and supply of gas and electricity meters by third parties, including smart meters.
- Third party organisations that support Home Energy through the provision of systems and managed services including contact centre and billing operations.
Home Energy carefully selects its suppliers and partners based on various criteria, including their industry reputation for dealing ethically and with integrity. As such, we expect them to have appropriate measures and processes in place to avoid slavery and human trafficking in their operations.
Support for vulnerable customers
It is Home Energy’s aim to provide excellent service to all our customers but we are aware that some of our customers sometimes need additional help.
This might be where one or more people in a home are:
- Of pensionable age
- Chronically ill
- Under 5 years old
In addition, you may be eligible if you have certain mental health conditions which impact on your understanding of your bills or if you temporarily need extra support.
Priority Services Register
Home Energy keeps a confidential register of customers who may need extra help when there is a power cut or when your local electricity network operator or gas transporter need to give you some advance warning of an interruption to one of your energy supplies.
If you are of pensionable age, disabled or chronically ill you can ask to be added to our Priority Services Register at any time by calling our Customer Service team on 03300 246000
You don’t have to join the Priority Service Register, it is entirely optional.
Intermediary Nomination Scheme
If you are of pensionable age, disabled or chronically ill then, upon request, we can arrange to send your electricity and/or gas bill to any other person (for example a relative or friend) who has agreed to receive this.
Our Intermediary Nomination Scheme is free of charge and can be temporary or permanent as you choose. We can also still send you a copy of your bill in addition to the one that is sent to your nominated person.
To make use of this service, please contact our Customer Service team on 03300 246000
Gas Safety Checks
We will provide a free gas safety check if you ask for one and have not had a check carried out during the previous 12 months, if your household is in receipt of means-tested benefits and includes:
- A child under the age 5 or
- A person of pensionable age or
- A person who is disabled or
- A person who is chronically ill
If you are a tenant your landlord is responsible for organising your annual gas safety check.
The gas safety check will be carried out by a properly qualified person and will include checks on the safety of gas appliances and other gas fittings in your home.
If you are concerned about your gas installation or appliances (and are not entitled to a free gas safety check) you can employ a gas engineer to undertake a check. Your engineer should be a member of the Gas Safe Register. You can find a list of registered businesses by visiting www.gassaferegister.co.uk or by calling 0800 408 550.
Visiting your home
Should Home Energy need to visit your home for any reason, this will be arranged by appointment and will always take place within normal working hours (between 9am and 5pm) on a weekday. If you need to cancel or change an appointment, we would like at least 48 hours’ prior notice. Without enough notice we may charge for a reasonable proportion of our costs incurred in relation to the failed visit.
If we fail to keep the arranged appointment you are entitled to £30 compensation under our Guaranteed Standards of Service obligations.
All Home Energy representatives carry an identity card at all times. Please do not hesitate to ask for and carefully check this before allowing them into your property. If you are concerned as to whether or not someone is genuinely from Home Energy or one of their representatives, please contact us to check their credentials.
If you are of pensionable age, disabled or chronically ill, and require extra security you can request to be added to our password scheme. This is provided free of charge.
On joining this scheme you will be asked to choose a password or signal which we will record on our system and pass onto your local electricity network operator and/or gas distributor and to any of our or our agents’ representatives. When a representative visits your property you can then ask them for the password or signal before letting them in.
To join, please call our Customer Service team on 03300 246000
Reading your meter
In order to meet our obligations, we are required to conduct a safety inspection of your electricity and/or gas meter at least once every two years.
Where possible we will conduct a safety inspection as part of a normal meter reading visit.
We will always do our best to arrange an appointment with you. If this is not possible, as a last resort, we can obtain an entry warrant from a magistrate. We may charge you for our costs if we are forced to obtain entry to your home.
We can arrange for a representative to come and read your meter every three months if nobody in your household is able to do it and you do not have a smart meter for automatic readings. We will inform you of the meter reading and also ensure that you are left with a copy of this. If you are of pensionable age, disabled or chronically ill, this will be provided free of charge. Should you not be eligible to have this done free of charge we will agree the charge with you before the visit.
If you need us to come and take a meter reading, whenever possible we will book a visit at a time to suit you. This will always take place within normal working hours (9am to 5pm) on a weekday.
If we fail to keep the arranged appointment you are entitled to £30 compensation under our Guaranteed Standards of Service obligations.
Moving your meter
If you are of pensionable age, disabled or chronically ill and pay for your electricity and/or gas through a prepayment meter but find it difficult to get to your prepayment meter, you can ask us to move your meter. If it is appropriate, safe and practical for us to do so, this will be free of charge.
Paying your bill
If you are unable to pay your bill, or are worried that you may have difficulty paying, please contact us. We will talk through the available options with you so that we can agree between us what the best plan of action would be for your particular circumstances. This will then allow you to continue using electricity and/or gas.
Options we can offer you are:
- Short term deferment of payment.
- Agreeing a debt repayment plan as instalments.
- Agreeing a regular instalment plan for future bills.
- Where relevant, arranging for payment directly from benefits through the Fuel Direct Scheme.
We will take all reasonable steps to assess your ability to pay and will take this into account when calculating the amount of money you should pay, as well as the amount of electricity and/or gas you use. We will agree the amount with you and confirm that you are able to pay this amount. If you continue to have problems paying we can review the amount you need to pay.
If you are in receipt of Pension Credit, Income Support or Jobseeker’s Allowance, you may be able to take advantage of the Fuel Direct scheme. Under this scheme the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) will take money each week to the value of the current Fuel Direct rate directly from your benefit. If we agree to accept part payment of your bill or any arrears in this way, then DWP will pay us the money you owe for any electricity and/or gas debt you have with us as well as for your current usage. It normally takes 14 days for us to set up this arrangement for you with the DWP.
Disconnection is always a last resort. However, if you do not pay your bill we may take steps to disconnect your supply. We will always give consideration to all your circumstances known to us at the time prior to making any decisions.
If any member of your household is of pensionable age, chronically ill, disabled or under 5 years old, then we will not disconnect you between October 1 and March 31.
We will always try and find out if someone in your household is considered vulnerable before disconnecting the electricity and/or gas supply.
Please note that, if you are a dual fuel customer, disconnection of your electricity supply does not automatically mean disconnection of your gas supply and vice-versa.
If you are blind or partially sighted and ask us, or we are asked on your behalf, for information about any bill or statement of account, we will provide you with that information free of charge in a format you reasonably request.
Communicating with us
Telephone: 03300 246000
Home Energy Ltd
Riverbridge House Business Centre
Useful External Contacts
T: 0800 470 8090
Ty John Pathy
13/14 Neptune Court
Vanguard Way, Cardiff
T: 0800 022 3444
Ombudsman Services: Energy
PO Box 966
Telephone: 0330 440 1624
Energy Saving Trust
Second Floor, Ocean Point 1
94 Ocean Drive, Edinburgh
T: 0808 808 2282
1 Caspian Point, Caspian Way
Cardiff Bay, Cardiff
T: 0300 123 1234
Complaint Handling at Home Energy
Our goal is to always provide a first-class service to you. However, sometimes things can go wrong.
If you are not happy with us for any reason we want to hear from you. That way we have an opportunity to put things right and to improve.
Customer Service Team
If you are unhappy about something we’ve done, or something we haven’t done, in the first instance, please get in touch with our customer service team, so we can sort things out at the first opportunity. The quickest and best way to do this is by phone on 03300 246000
Our goal is to resolve issues there and then while you are on the phone.
Alternatively, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Although the vast majority of issues can be sorted out quickly, once we know about them, sometimes there isn’t a simple or quick fix.
Complaints Handling Team
When this is the case, we will automatically escalate the issue to our Complaints Handling Team. Your complaint will be handled by a team member who will personally own and manage the issue and its resolution.
The complaints advisor will work on the issue and keep you in touch with progress.
Sometimes complaint investigations can take time, but the Complaints team will aim to contact you within 5 working days to resolve the case.
Members of our management team regularly review all outstanding complaints and ensure that we resolve issues as quickly as possible.
Energy Supply regulations stipulate that Energy Suppliers are allowed no more than 8 weeks to resolve a complaint to your satisfaction.
If the Complaints team are unable to resolve your complaint within 8 weeks, you will receive a letter advising you on how to escalate it to the Energy Ombudsman.
The Energy Ombudsman is a free and independent service, offering advice and an impartial investigation of complaints. Please note that Ombudsman Services require a complaint to go through Home Energy’s internal complaints process before they will accept a case.
If you contact them before this stage and have not followed the steps laid out above, you will be referred back to us.
Sometimes we may offer you a “Deadlock Letter” before your complaint is 8 weeks old.
This will be issued if we believe there is nothing more that we can do to resolve the issue you are unhappy about. A deadlock letter will summarise your complaint and advise you on how to escalate it to the Energy Ombudsman.
You can write to the Energy Ombudsman at:
Ombudsman Services: Energy
PO Box 966
You are not bound by the Energy Ombudsman’s ruling and you may seek further advice if you wish to do this.
The Energy Ombudsman can direct us to provide an apology or explanation, a service or action that will benefit you, or provide a financial award. Home Energy will stand by any decision made by the Energy Ombudsman.
Citizens Advice Service
In addition, Citizens Advice consumer services can be consulted at any stage during the complaints process.
We will co-operate with Citizens Advice and the Energy Ombudsman if you wish to involve them in resolving your complaint.
Citizens Advice provides free, confidential and impartial advice on consumer issues. You can obtain more information by reading their consumer rights checklist, calling them on: 03454 040506 visiting their website at www.citizensadvice.org.uk/energy, or filling in their web form.