Self Service - Why phone or email, when you can do it yourself!


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We’re always working on ways to help customers take control of their energy usage and manage their account. We are all time poor so we don’t want you to waste time calling us or emailing and waiting for a reply, if you don’t need to. Instead we provide so many ways to quickly and easily manage your energy account yourself.

If you signed up to our Online Discount, you told us you love to self serve and don't want to call us, another reason we make all of these great self serve options available to all customers.

So how do I self serve?
Every customer has the option to self serve via our app (for Apple, for Android), or on My OVO.

On these platforms you can:
- View and submit meter readings
- Compare historic usage in kWh or £, and browse any statement we've sent you
- Check and change your Direct Debit amount, make a payment or initiate a refund
- View and edit your personal info and tariff
- Browse and add tariff upgrades, perks and offers

What if I need help....?
That’s pretty much everything needed to maintain your OVO account all year round. Of course sometimes things don’t go to plan. But before you reach for the phone, we’ve got your self service problem solving journey covered as well.

First and foremost, there’s this very forum! Search for your query and see if anyone’s had the same thing solved already. If not, post the question yourself and one of our lovely forum users will assist. Because the forum is available 24/7, you can post anytime, anywhere making it super convenient for you.

Lastly but by no means least, we have our fantastic OVO Help section, with loads of a support pages on everything energy related! Again, simple to read and find information on the go, saving you time and effort.

Your feedback is always welcome!
So whatever your preference, you're the one in control. How do you keep things on track? What's the easiest way to manage your account or get a query solved? Leave a comment below so we can keep our self service options as helpful as possible!

21 replies

Userlevel 7
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Speaking of self service: check out these new topics for the latest info on the Self Service Reward, and changes in our T&Cs this October 2018:

https://forum.ovoenergy.com/ovo-loyalty-rewards-and-t-c-s-52/new-self-service-reward-what-s-changing-4915

https://forum.ovoenergy.com/ovo-loyalty-rewards-and-t-c-s-52/how-to-contact-ovo-after-changes-to-terms-and-conditions-from-1st-october-4974
Great. Now we can't even email without being charged. The forum is no use if you have an account problem (caused by ovo) because of personal information.
I can't even complain about being charged because I'll be charged again for making the complaint.
What should I do if I have a technical problem which isn't my fault?
And how can I get the money back that ovo shouldn't have taken?
Userlevel 7
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Erm... @ECL I don't think you've grasped how the SSR is being applied. It's not the draconian imposition that you might suppose.

Firstly, You can't lose the SSR for any matter which forms a complaint. That would contravene OVO's published Complaints Procedure which gets audited by Ofgem.

Secondly, you can only lose the SSR for matters which you could resolve yourself - via the help-pages, the My OVO page or here on the Forum.

Quite a lot of account issues can be resolved here without any of us needing to know your personal information or details of your Statements. Last week I was able to tell someone where to find how much they had earned in Interest Reward on their account credit.

It is true that when you telephone Customer Services you will be warned at the outset that you can lose your SSR payment for that quarter. However, you can then outline why you have called and state that this cannot be resolved by yourself. It is usual for CS to end the call by confirming that your SSR is unaffected.

I had a half-hour lunch-time discussion with two of the Moderators about the SSR when I was in OVO Offices at the beginning of December. So I now have quite a good grasp of it.

You are welcome to post here and request clarification of any issue where you think the SSR might be applied in a manner detrimental to the customer. If you raise an issue which OVO haven't yet considered, then it's quite possible for the Moderators to flag this up internally and amend the guidelines used within CS.
Thank you for your detailed response. The information is useful, however, I don't think you've grasped what a lot of time and effort it now is to sort out a small problem. I spent around four hours trying to find out why I had been charged for sending an email and what I could do about it. It has not been sorted out yet.
If you are the type of person who loves social media (and has time for it), this system is probably okay. If you are not, then it is not.
Userlevel 7
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I agree with your observations, @ECL

The time & effort is the very point that OVO are wanting to establish as the basis of why many customers do not want to handle their own account online. That's why they are prepared to pay £30 per fuel in order for Customer Services to handle all their enquiries.

The problem which had emerged is that OVO's CS staff were spending a significant amount of time handling enquiries from customers (like myself) who had signed up on a Contract that had an Online Discount.

So the customers who couldn't cope with resolving issues themselves were not enjoying the very service that they were entitled to.

A high percentage of customers migrate to OVO because of the highly-rated customer support staff. This Department has won them National Awards over the years. It's not just a personal opinion!

I've visited OVO's HQ in Bristol (on a number of occasions) and had the opportunity to meet staff who are carefully recruited and trained to fulfil this role. It makes no sense to then have such a large proportion of their time taken up with queries which could be readily resolved online... especially when those queries are coming from customers who are not entitled to receive that level of support under the Contract they opted for.

I do not work for OVO. Nor do I work in the energy sector elsewhere.

However, I do have experience as a Company Director, and I understand why OVO's Board have needed to take steps to preserve their most precious asset... the skilled staff who manage the links to customers. That's why the Online Discount has been replaced with the Self-Service Reward system.

Even those of us who signed up for an Online Discount Tariff can now contact Customer Services to save us time and hassle. But if I decide to do that, then I forfeit £7.50 for the current quarter.
Userlevel 4
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Not wishing to sound too cynical but surely the self service system only works if someone at OVO can be bothered to reply. I'm still waiting for a response to my email from hello@ovoenergy.com as to why my December bill did not include any gas charges. I've even taken to these forums but as yet nobody has responded. As a last resort I even sent a private message to one of the moderators and again I've heard nothing.

Would it be fair to assume nobody at OVO has got my 'self service problem solving journey covered'?

It's one thing to say customers who couldn't cope with resolving issues themselves were not enjoying the very service that they were entitled to, but if no answers can be found what are we supposed to do? Surely 'self servicing' only works if all parties make the effort.
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It is true that when you telephone Customer Services you will be warned at the outset that you can lose your SSR payment for that quarter. However, you can then outline why you have called and state that this cannot be resolved by yourself. It is usual for CS to end the call by confirming that your SSR is unaffected.


Sorry to disagree but this is news to me, I've spent plenty of time on the phone to OVO in the last 12 months over billing & tariff rate issues which cannot be solved via other means and not once has anyone warned me from the outset that I could lose my SSR. Likewise none of the OVO staff have ever ended the call by saying my SSR is unaffected. I do however always ask if it will affect my SSR at the end of the call because I don't want to be penalised for things beyond my control.
Userlevel 7
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I'm not sure we're in that much disagreement @Slinky

Firstly, if the SSR hasn't been raised at the beginning of the call, and the subject matter is clearly something which wouldn't cause it to be forfeit, then it's not likely that a CS staff member will raise it out of the blue as the call ends.

Secondly, CS Staff can see on screen your previous contact record when you start the call. If it's already clear that there is a history of them needing to address an issue which you couldn't resolve yourself, they would also have no need to raise the matter of SSR. This would seem to apply in your case.

I'm actually quite heartened to see that they are aware enough of your plight to avoid mentioning the SSR. That's a sensible decision from a properly trained member of staff.
Userlevel 4
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@Transparent

Thanks for the feedback and for explaining things a little more clearly, hey what do I know? I'm only a customer and I don't suppose I'll ever fully understand the inner workings of OVO, much of the time I'm completely baffled how things can go so wrong.

Ironically I did receive a reply back from OVO today about my missing Gas bill which I mentioned above, same old excuses.., "there was an error with our systems". I'm mystified why I'm the only one effected by them, I didn't see anyone else complaining they hadn't been billed for their gas.

Talking of the SSR, I've noticed in the Gas bill that OVO sent me today I received £7.14 but there was nothing shown on my Electricity bill for the same period, does that sound right? Should I not have received it on both statements?
I read the history here with interest as I'm in a similar position where I think there is a problem with my account. I tried following the self service route and overall I do like that I can self-serve as it's often the easiest option, but the issue I have is not something I can fix or update via MyOVO, I can't find the answer in OVO Help or this forum.

I tried asking a couple of questions in the forum but I've had no reply so far. I suspect because the issue I have is not a common one. So, I'm in a position where I need to contact OVO for some help but I don't want to lose my SSR.


I've seen comments in the forum along the lines of:
"if you're not able to find the answer on the forum, OVO Help or you can't do the action yourself on MyOVO or the app, you can contact our Customer Care team without losing this reward."

However, when I checked the Self Service Reward Terms (clause 14) it seems to contradict the guidance above. Clause 14.5 states:

14.5 How will you apply the Self Service Reward Rules? We will apply the rules using our fair discretion at all times.
For example:
  • Self-serve’ means that you use all online tools available such as My OVO, the OVO Energy app and OVO Help to manage your account instead of contacting us (by any means, including phone, email or social media), unless you want to make a complaint or you have an emergency.
  • Pay on time’ means that you keep your direct debit active at all times during your contract.

Whilst it says the rules will be applied using fair discretion, it looks fairly black and white about not contacting OVO unless it's an emergency or a complaint or you will lose your SSR.

My account issue is not an emergency and I don't want to raise a complaint - I just need someone at OVO to help investigate / fix an issue.

Can someone from OVO please clarify that contacting OVO via email / phone for help with an issue that cannot be fixed via self-service and is not an emergency would be covered under the 'fair discretion' rule and mean that a customer will retain their SSR for the quarter?
Userlevel 4
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@TonyY

Actually your problems are very similar to my own, you cannot rectify those issues through these forums because other customers cannot access your account to give advice.

It is perfectly acceptable to contact OVO under the circumstances you describe without losing your Self Service Reward (SSR) especially as you have already tried to rectify the issue your self without success.

Under OFGEM rules you cannot be penalised for raising a complaint so to be sure you won't lose your SSR you should put 'Complaint' in the subject header.

As an update to my previous comments I did eventually receive my SSR for the previous bill, by all accounts it was due to an error which OVO admitted was their fault.
As a disabled customer it is unbelievable you have removed Saturday hours from your customer service.

Moving everything online is NOT useful for everyone, but clearly you don't care if someone is disabled. I will be moving away from you today!
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@PatrickVS

I was about to correct you and say Customer Service is open Mon - Sat but having checked I see that OVO have been rather sneaky in changing this without informing their customers. I'm shocked that they would do this on the sly 🤔

It does seem however that PAYG Boost customers do still benefit from Saturday opening hours, go figure...

Have you registered as a 'Priority' customer?
Yes I only noticed it today, they now are the only energy supplier unreachable on a Saturday
I am on the priority service register, but that does not make a difference on contacting them.
Userlevel 4
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Good job you mentioned it @PatrickVS I'm sure it will come as a surprise to most customers.

So you're on the priority service register and yet you're not given 'priority' that makes sense, NOT!!

I was on the register when I was with British Gas and had their home care agreement, they always came out quickly if I had a heating problem but I can't see how that would work as an OVO customer.

Of course if you do have an issue that cannot be solved through these forums you can still make a complaint. As others have mentioned under Ofgem rules you cannot be penalised for making complaints and therefore would not lose your self service reward. Just mark your email as 'Complaint' in the header.
Slinky,

If there is a power outage then you get some form of priority, but that is done by the distributor (Western Power in my case) but not in any communication with OVO.

It would have already helped if they had informed people the customer service desk is closed on a Saturday now, actually it still says it is open on the priority service register page, but as it is the general number you just get a recording they are closed.
Userlevel 4
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I guess your only option then is to email OVO and head all communications 'Complaint'. 😩

Meanwhile you only have 24 hours to go before you can speak to a real human being by which time of course there will probably be a long queue of people waiting to do the same thing. Oh what joy!
Cant. Get. Help. Desperate. Pensioner. On. Min. Payments. Need. To. Talk. Get. Help
Cant. Afford. Payments. Please. Phone. Me. Or. Get. In touch. Very. Very. Desperate
Userlevel 4
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@Llankid

You're wasting your time asking for OVO to phone you. You'll need to contact them yourself to ask for assistance.

You might find this link more helpful: OVO- Debt and energy assistance
Userlevel 7
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Hi @Llankid Can I also recommend that you apply to be on the Priority Services Register.

This gives a higher profile to customers who may be unable to handle all aspects of their energy account for themselves. Contact between those on the PSR and their Energy Suppliers is independently audited by Ofgem.
Userlevel 5
Sorry to hear about this, @Llankid.

@Transparent is spot on here - make sure you get on the Priority Services Register!

It may also be worth giving our Customer Support team a call, they'll be more than happy to help here and talk through your options. They're available on 0800 0699 831 option 3, Monday-Thursday 8am-8pm, Friday 8am-6pm and Saturday 9am-2pm.

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