One essential feature that defines us as an energy consultant rather than simply an energy broker is our detailed contract design process.
We work for and with you to design an effective and intelligent contract that is tailored to your business. This encompasses a meticulous 5-step process that helps your business reach its energy cost avoidance goals as well as saves you time, energy, and stress. Our process is simple, transparent, and thorough to ensure that you are gaining the utmost value for your contract when purchasing electricity and natural gas.
While each client may require a slightly different approach, our general contract design process is as follows:
As you may have read in another post, Purchasing Strategies Made for Your Business, a purchasing strategy tailored to your business is vital to helping your business reach its cost avoidance goals. In this first step, we work very closely with you to gain a complete understanding of your business and budget goals through intensive analysis and a thorough risk tolerance study. Once we know your business inside and out, we educate you on the basics of purchasing strategies and customize one specifically to your business that will save you the most in cost avoidance while protecting your budget from volatile price surges.
We perform a comprehensive review and scrubbing of all of your energy bills, load factors, rate structures, past usage, past contracts, and much more. This part of the process helps us determine your needs, pain points, and how to best resolve them as well as develops a picture of your usage to inform us on how we can best advocate for you in the market.
This would also be the point in the process in which we would figure out if your facility could reap the sustainability and economic benefits of an efficiency or renewable energy project such as connecting to solar energy, LED lighting enhancements, distributed generation, and much more.* After all of this has been completed, we present you with a fully-fledged report of our findings and our contract recommendations.
*If we are doing an efficiency or renewable energy project with your facility, this would change the contract design process timeline as the project would have to be completed before we move on to posturing your usage in the market to get pricing
Then, using all your usage history and report information as well as your tailored purchasing strategy, we create a Request for Proposal (RFP) that we posture in the market to a variety of trustworthy suppliers. This is a transparent process that requires suppliers to compete with each other for your contract, which pressures them to present us with the best possible price for your business and chosen strategy.
To ensure your contracts have every possible protection, we have a stringent vetting process for suppliers we choose to work with in which we look at their history, financial stability, hedging practices, risk management, customer service record, and a variety of other factors. You will only see prices from what we call Tier 1 & Tier 2 suppliers as they are the only ones that meet our strict guidelines and have a proven record of being reliable and trustworthy.
Unfortunately, a number of suppliers have proven themselves unacceptable by our strict benchmarks so we categorize them as Tier 3. When your RFP is posed in the market for pricing, you will only see proposals from Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers, even if a Tier 3 supplier’s price is less. This is because we value the protection of our clients first and foremost.
At this point in the process, we come to you with a full report of the strategy and prices from the suppliers and make a recommendation on which one we think you should work with, although the choice is ultimately yours. Once you’ve chosen the supplier and price, we then scrutinize each line of the contract they’ve presented and negotiate with them to bolster the contract language to make sure that you have strong Terms and Conditions and a fortified contract with legitimate price protection guarantees. We then meet with you to recap the strategy, compose the contract, and review everything to ensure that what we’ve put together meets all of your needs and expectations.
Once the contract has been reviewed and approved by you, we begin executing the contract and purchasing strategy. Although this may be the last step in the contract design process, it is certainly not the last of our work with you as, no matter your purchasing strategy, we continuously perform contract maintenance, watch the market for spikes and dips, consistently check pricing, and much more for the entire length of your contract to ensure you are protected from price volatility while taking advantage of market lows.
Our Energy Advisors also continuously check in with you to ensure you’re pleased with your contract execution and help you get ready to purchase pieces of your future contracts so you can capture more market lows well before your current contract is up!
The BPE White Glove Experience
Another part of our strict contract design process that sets us apart is our long-standing supplier relationships. We’ve spent years cultivating relationships with suppliers all over the country to provide our customers with a White Glove Experience. This provides you with multiple benefits including enrollment confirmation, simplistic transactions, prevents hidden ‘gotchas’ in contracts, offers fortified terms and conditions, gives you the option of longer and increased payment terms, and ensures that your company has the highest priority on any and all customer service issues. There’s a reason why our customer retention rate is well above 90%!
Having a strong contract that helps you avoid significant costs on your electricity and natural gas bills is the result of a stringent sculpting process.
The attention to detail that we put into our clients’ contracts is one of our biggest differentiators from other brokers as very few perform this type of comprehensive review and granular construction. We put all this work in to ensure your contract has your best interests in mind and is mitigated of all potential risk. To experience our contract design process firsthand, contact us today to embark on your own electricity or natural gas procurement journey!