People behind the projects: meet Susan Tebbitt

A Shell Energy veteran, having worked in the business for over a decade, Susan Tebbitt is a Product Owner within our Operations team. Alongside the rest of her team, Susan’s role is pivotal in ensuring that our monthly billing cycle continues to be as accurate and timely as possible.

We sat down with Susan to discover more about the work that her team does in the lead up to the release of our monthly energy bills and why having an accurate and timely bill is so important for our customers’ continued success.

To start with, can you tell us a little about your role and your team?

I am part of the Operations team here at Shell Energy, specialising in but not limited to, billing, and I have been here for about 12 years and have performed many different roles. When I first started, there were two people in the billing team and now we are a team of 13.

Together, we ensure that the monthly energy billing cycle for our customers is as accurate and timely as possible and take care of the whole process. The Operations team is very dynamic in that we all share knowledge and switch responsibilities depending on what is needed to get the job done at the time, so my day-to-day could be anything from helping customers successfully roll-in new sites, to working to ensure billing data accuracy to providing background support for our account managers.

We are focused on knowledge sharing across the team and each team member can pivot to best support our customers and colleagues.

Why is having an accurate and timely bill so important?

Having an accurate and timely bill is important for our customers in managing their cash flow in and out. People do not like bill shock, businesses are making decisions based on the amount of cash going in and out and they need to see their energy invoice to know what their total outgoings will be. With our team’s dedication to ensuring billing accuracy and timeliness, our customers can set up their systems knowing that on a set day of the month they will receive their bills, they know where they stand and can manage their business’ expenses accordingly.

We see ourselves as an extension of our customers’ businesses, and it is obviously important to them that their business continues to flourish and grow, so it is important to us that we can support that.

How does the billing process typically work?

It is a little bit of a rollercoaster, in the best way. The billing process is a monthly cycle, so as soon as one month’s bills are out the door we are immediately back to the beginning of the process for the next month.

The generation of the bills themselves is automatic, but that process is based on a wealth of data that needs to be monitored and updated before the bills are generated. So that is what the Operations team is taking care of on a month-to-month basis, all the bits and bobs that go behind the process. What we are building throughout the month in the lead up to billing is: making sure customers are transferred in, new connections are set up and ensuring they are on the right network tariffs for their site, that they have got the right meter charges and demand history is loaded. We do all this to ensure that all the data feeding into the billing automation is accurate, so that a bill can be successfully generated and sent out to customers.

What are some of the things that your team do differently to ensure the best experience for customers?

One of the most consistent pieces of feedback we get from our customers is that we are easier to deal with than our competitors, and I think that comes down to the relationships our account managers have with their customers and with the Operations team. Our account managers know that they can come to us and ask for assistance on behalf of our customers and know that we will provide a fast resolution. Some of our competitors often have their operations offshore, which can lead to frustration when customers need a quick answer. We are local and we know our customers well and get an answer very quickly so they can keep focused on running their business.

A lot of the work we do is also dependent on external sources, like meter providers and networks. So, we work to maintain excellent relationships with those sources to ensure that we are able to quickly correct or resolve any issues that our customers experience.

If there was one thing you would like the world to know about billing, what would it be?

We really care about delivering timely and accurate bills. It matters to us that we get it right because we understand how important an accurate bill is to the health of our customers’ businesses and how something that is as simple as a timely and accurate bill can impact their operations.

If you’d like to learn more about the different components of your electricity and gas bill, visit our bill explainer.

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