The ENGIE Group’s Mediation team has developed a specific dispute resolution practice that prioritises personalised handling of complainants.
The results of the year 2017 for ENGIE Group’s Mediation quality indicators have once again improved. It should be noted that, as an independent and accredited business mediation service within the meaning of the French Consumer Code (“business mediation” referring to a mediation system exclusively paid for by a professional), we are bound by exhaustive rules, compliance with which is ensured by the oversight of a Commission set up by the State in the framework of the transposition of the 2013 European Directive on consumer mediation. ENGIE Group’s Mediation therefore naturally complies with the rules of substance and form imposed by the regulations, such as:
- The independent status of the Mediator Jean-Pierre Hervé respected in all aspects, with a dedicated team for the handling of the thousands of referrals received and hundreds of mediations performed each year;
- The impartiality of the proposed handling,
- The neutrality of the mediation system,
- Informing complainants and customers of the ENGIE Group about the possibility of referring the matter to the Mediator (on energy bills; on contracts; on the websites; on the footer of suppliers’ answers to complaints from their customers; and, of course, in the Mediator’s annual report and on his independent website),
- The free nature of mediation for the complainant,
- The freedom of the parties at all stages of the process,
- A mediation process which restores a balanced relationship between the parties (asymmetry being characteristic of the relationship between a customer and a large company),
- Opinions given by the Mediator for each mediation, fairly under the law.
Beyond these criteria, the ENGIE Group’s Mediation team has set up and maintained a form of mediation which, in 2017, allowed 90% of the proposed mediation opinions to be accepted by the complainants.
Through the following characteristics, it is therefore possible to fully understand the DNA of the ENGIE Group’s Mediation team:
- Each mediation solution is validated by Jean-Pierre Hervé, the ENGIE Group’s Mediator;
- A multidisciplinary team assists the Mediator, composed of people from a variety of professional backgrounds (lawyers, client professions, engineers, etc.);
- They are all trained in energy education, as well as consumer and energy law and related regulations (e.g. the CRE or Energy Regulation Commission instructions);
- Rigorous follow-up of requests / referrals has been put in place so that a response is systematically provided concerning:
- Eligibility of the request for mediation and information on the process that will follow,
- And in the event of ineligibility, information for the complainant, and referral of their case to the appropriate contact person. the complainant is also advised that if they are not satisfied with the processing of their case, they can return to mediation if the eligibility criterion should be subsequently met.
Each complainant is actively listened to through systematic and regular telephone calls (unless, in a few rare cases, the complainant only wants to communicate by post or e-mail). This makes it easier to:
- Speak with the complainant in order to understand all the points which constitute their dispute,
- keep the complainant regularly informed of the progress of their case, beyond acknowledgments of receipt. As well as projected deadlines related to each stage of their personalised process,
- speak with the complainant on a more regular basis so that they are also a player in the resolution of their dispute with the ENGIE Group’s services concerned, and not merely a passive party as in a legal proceeding: this allows them to truly be a “proactive consumer”,
- explain the aspects of the dispute and the proposals to resolve it, and so enable the Mediator and his team to also express, in a direct way, by the evidence, their neutrality and impartiality in processing the file,
- make every effort at all times to establish and maintain a relationship of trust, confidentiality and goodwill.
A single contact person is dedicated to each case: they can be contacted at any time and follow the applicant throughout the mediation process.
Mediation systematically promotes discussion, in full transparency, because it facilitates obtaining the agreement of the two parties involved (complainant and supplier).
The work of the ENGIE Group’s Mediator is underpinned by 8 values.
To fulfil his mediation duties, the ENGIE Group’s Mediator is part of an ecosystem that includes numerous parties to legitimise, inform and organise his action.
Mediation only ends after the effective implementation of mediation solutions accepted by all parties. This ensures a definitive end to the dispute.
Mediation helps to improve the ENGIE Group’s offers and services through general recommendations and also ensures their effective implementation each year. This information is shown in the Mediator’s annual report and on his website.
The Mediation team has implemented, in addition to the proposed single point of contact, online monitoring, via an internet account, to inform the complainant of the progress of their case.
A systematic satisfaction survey aimed at the complainants, allows the Mediation team to call itself into question if necessary, and to improve its processes.
The Mediation team informs consumers, through its website, in a fully transparent manner, so that they can obtain answers to the most common questions asked of the Mediator, in particular via FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) set up for this purpose in 2017.