Acea Energia, the Group company responsible for managing the sale of electricity and gas, recruits Agencies for door to door sale and/or teleselling activities in the “household” and “micro business” free market. In 2014, the quality of the sales service delivered by the agents continued to be monitored, according to procedures that were introduced two years ago and reflected in the Agency Agreement governing the relationship between Acea Energia and the sales agent network, the purpose being to protect customers and prevent any unfair commercial practises.
The Agency Agreement requires mandatory training for staff members who operate on behalf and in the name of Acea to ensure that they provide accurate information to the customers, with fines also being applicable in the event that unfair commercial practices are identified.
In 2014, Acea Energia provided training to 1,205 salesmen, totalling 1,400 hours of tuition focused on the regulations issued by the industry Authority, Commercial Code of Conduct and Products being offered. At the end of the course, the participants are required to undergo and pass a written test (questionnaire) in order that they may be authorised to operate on behalf of Acea Energia, with an appropriate identity card being issued.
The company, to whom customers send reports and complaints, has also adopted strict internal audit procedures to monitor agent performance (see Customers and Community under Customer Care).
If unfair commercial practices are detected, then fines will be inflicted pursuant to the Agreement starting from 1,000 euros, plus the non-payment of any compensation accrued during the relevant month in connection with the commercial quality of acquisitions. In 2014, new (electricity and gas) supplies acquired totalled 261,982, in respect of which 1,793 customer complaints were reviewed and investigated, with 14 sanctions being inflicted for misconduct (totalling 14,000 euros), a trend in line with 2013.