Solutions of a new energy era for customers
Offering the opportunities of the new energy era to our customers, taking care of the security of energy supply and customer orientation are the basis of our operations.
Our aim is to provide even more comprehensive energy-related services and to offer more extensive packages tailored to the needs of our customers. In 2020, the number of our customers continued to rise and the number of electricity customers is now more than 550,000. Helen energy services cover up to about one-third of Finnish residents.
During the year, we continued to develop both sales and customer services, and we invested especially in the development of worksites from the customers’ point of view. We also refined the processes related to the handling of feedback and complaints with an even closer customer focus.
Excellent security over supply
Maintaining a high security of supply is extremely important to us. We take account of the security of supply in the planning, operation and maintenance of energy production and distribution systems.
The security of energy supply remained at an excellent level. Helsinki residents enjoy the most reliable energy distribution in Europe. In 2020, the annual outage time for our electricity distribution customers was at a record low, an average of 1.2 minutes. This level means that a Helsinki resident has a power cut of half an hour once every 25 years. According to Finnish Energy’s statistics on power outages, electricity distribution in the whole country was interrupted for an average of 30 minutes per electricity user living in a densely populated area and 378 minutes for those living outside town plan areas in 2019. In 2020, the average outage time for Helen’s district heat customer was about 3.03 hours (2.7 in 2019), up by 12 per cent. The reason for this was the high number of operational outages. In the entire country, the average customer-specific district heat outage time was 1.93 hours in 2019 according to Finnish Energy’s statistics on district heating outages.
The outage time in district cooling became considerably longer, 4.48 hours (1.0 h in 2019). The time was increased by a few longer operational outages.
Changes in the urban infrastructure, as well as new and neighbourhood construction have increased significantly over the past few years. All this has had an impact on the amount of work carried out on district heating and cooling, which is directly related to the increase in numbers and durations of outages. Efficiency measures in relation to the number and duration of outages are always planned separately for each task. We aim to minimise any disadvantage to customers caused by new construction sites by carrying out the outages during the night.
Security of electricity supply
|Annual outage time for customers, minutes|
Security of heat and cooling supply in Helsinki
|Annual outage time for district heating customers, hours||Annual outage time for district cooling customers, hours|
Towards the most customer-centric energy company
In order to promote our vision, in 2020 we drew up a customer experience strategy, which determines the market position of our customer experience, a vision of the experience offered to our customers, and our key development areas in order to achieve these by 2025. We also identified the current state of our customer orientation and identified factors to develop it. In order to promote the implementation of the customer experience strategy and our customer orientation, we drew up a change programme to achieve our targets.
In November 2020, we launched for our customers the Oma Helen mobile app for monitoring and learning to know their own electricity consumption. In addition to the further enhanced customer experience that Oma Helen offers to Helen’s customers, the possibilities to make sustainable energy choices with the app are also significant. The Oma Helen app is an important step in the digitalisation of the energy company and the improvement of customer experience.
According to the annual international and impartial EPSI Rating survey, we succeeded well in our customer service in 2020. The survey indicated that in 2020 the consumer-customer satisfaction in the entire sector started to rise slightly, with a score of 70.8. Helen’s result for consumer customers is 71.5 index points, which means that the level of our customer satisfaction is high and it exceeds the industry average.
The EPSI Rating survey was carried out in Finland among business customers for the second time running. Helen’s result improved among business customers by 2.2 index points, and the total score was now 60.7 index points. With this result, Helen ranked as second best company in the industry, exceeding the sector average by 1.2 index points.
Customer satisfaction, EPSI Rating index
Source: EPSI Rating Finland 2020
|Helen ltd||Energy sector|
The development of carbon-neutral products and services is one of Helen’s key responsibility themes. Our aim is to develop solutions that meet the needs of our customers and especially their carbon-neutrality targets. We focus especially on solar energy, e-mobility solutions and the energy-efficiency services of properties.
The views of the customers are the basis for our service development, and therefore our customers are involved in product development and in improving the user experiences of the products.
In 2020, we developed our solutions that were already on the market and launched several new services for businesses, housing companies and households.
In terms of heat, renewable district heat and recycled heat were our product areas that were showing strong growth and that our customers use for making more carbon neutral choices. We saw growth especially in the extra product of recycled heat. The demand for renewable products was also seen in the sale of guarantees of origin for electricity.
We are improving our customers’ options for low-emission mobility by expanding the charging network of e-mobility for homes, businesses and in public places, and by developing new charging services. In 2020, we built charging points especially for housing companies and businesses. Our public charging network also grew and developed when we installed almost 80 new charging points at sports facilities in Helsinki and a high power charger representing latest technology in Suvilahti. We now have more than 200 public electric vehicle charging points throughout Helsinki. We are also expanding the service provision of e-mobility – in 2020 we launched the new Helen Lataus service. EV drivers registering with the service will get Helen’s RFID tags for activating charging to start at all Helen’s charging points and at the Europe-wide charging network of our partner.
In terms of solar energy, in 2020 we installed a record number of solar panels for our customers, especially for consumers. We also expanded our range of services related to solar energy and launched on the market a solar power plant aimed especially for consumers, a charging device for detached homes or as a combination of an air source heat pump, and the Virtuaaliakku service that facilitates utilisation of own solar energy production. We also launched a solar power plant for farms, and the monitoring and maintenance service for a solar power plant aimed at businesses.
During 2020, we developed a ground source heat solution aimed at housing companies, and we completed the Ground source heat pilot project. With the pilot project, we developed heating solutions based on ground source heat for customers who want the added benefit of their own renewable energy production in their housing company. At the same time, we gained more experience and expertise with regard to the delivery chain of ground source heat solutions. In addition, we launched on the market new services for the development of energy efficiency in properties: a basic adjustment service for the radiator network and a heating optimisation service based on automatic control.
Ethical use of data
We use the intellectual and information capital obtained from customers in a responsible manner and in accordance with our data strategy.
We handle the data gathered from our customers and processed by us in a transparent, fair and ethical way, and not only in compliance with legislation. In the handling of data, we take account of, for example, the fact that models and decisions made on the basis of data would include as few distortions as possible, e.g. due to inadequate history data or an underrepresented area. Moreover, we do not distort the interpretation of data, e.g. with misleading visualisations. We only gather necessary data.
We also expect our partners to act in a responsible manner in the use of data.
We ensure that the use of data within Helen and with the partners meets Helen’s data protection and information security principles and that it complies with external regulations, e.g. the GDPR.
We aim to offer open data, for example, for research and development use. We take close account of data protection and information security and we ensure that individual customers cannot be identified from open data.