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Industry leading trial of direct negotiation with a Customer Forum

As part of our customer engagement, we will be the first Australian utility business to trial a new process that places customers at the heart of developing our expenditure plans. This new process involves the establishment of a Customer Forum that is capable of representing the perspective of our customers.

Elements of AusNet Services’ Regulatory Proposal for the 2021-25 regulatory period are being negotiated with the Customer Forum. The outcomes of the negotiations to date are reflected in our recently published Draft Regulatory Proposal.


Customer Forum Interim Engagement Report

Customer Forum Interim Engagement Report - AusNet Services EDPRThe Customer Forum has prepared an interim engagement report that describes its:

-  activities to date;

-  initial views and findings; and

- negotiation of elements of our 2021-25 Draft Regulatory Proposal .

You can access the report by clicking on this Customer Forum Interim Engagement Report link or on the image.


The Customer Forum expects to publish its Final Engagement Report in July 2019 alongside AusNet Services’ Final 2021-25 Regulatory Proposal to the Australian Energy Regulator (AER). 


Establishment and role of the Customer Forum

Beyond enhancing the way we listen to our customers, the Customer Forum trial is an exciting and innovative approach that aims to ensure that AusNet Services’ plans for the 2021-25 period genuinely reflect the preferences and perspectives of our customers.

The Customer Forum was established in March 2018 with strong support from consumer advocates and the Australian Energy Regulator (AER).

The arrangements for the Customer Forum have been developed in consultation with the AER and Energy Consumers Australia. The arrangements are documented in an Early Engagement Plan (EEP). The EEP is intended to be a living document that will be updated to reflect progress and insights gained throughout the Customer Forum process.

The approach used to recruit and select the five Forum members can be found in this document.

As well as supporting the trial, the AER has an important role in guiding and providing input to this new process. Further information and AER documentation relating to the trial process can be found on the AER’s website.

If you would like more information or have any comments on the trial process, please contact:

Stakeholder engagement

In addition to its monthly meeting with AusNet Services (since its inception in March 2018), the Customer Forum has been engaging with a range of other stakeholders to the 2021-25 Electricity Distribution Price Review (EDPR). This is to ensure the Customer Forum’s negotiations with AusNet Services are informed by the concerns, preferences and priorities of the broad range of stakeholders to the process, including customers, consumer advocates and community groups. Details of the Customer Forum’s engagement with customers and stakeholders is provided here.

This stakeholder engagement is supplementary to the in-depth customer research program undertaken by AusNet Services. The Customer Forum has helped to shape the research program, which will be an important resource during the EDPR process. The research undertaken includes one-on-one interviews with residential and large customers, quantitative surveys and focus groups.

The Customer Forum will be involved in several 'deep-dive' workshops planned for early 2019, seeking customer views and opinions on key aspects of AusNet Services’ Draft Proposal.


Presentations and material

Click on each section heading below for presentations and materials presented during recent customer forums.