Switchd is an automated energy switching service
Please introduce yourself and your start-up Switchd to our readers!
Switchd is an automated energy switching service. With smart algorithms and an incredibly simple to use platform, Switchd automatically keeps consumers on the best energy tariff.
Switchd looks at the whole market to find the best deal, not just suppliers who pay a commission. With a number of plans including a free option, Switchd is not only automatic, but can save customers an average of £106 more per year than price comparison sites.
How did you get the idea to Switchd?
I met Llewellyn Kinch at consultancy firm Newton Europe. At Newton Europe we were going around the country implementing big data solutions saving well-known brands millions of pounds.
In 2016 we read about the AgeUK scandal in which Britain’s biggest charity for the elderly promoted expensive “big six” tariffs in return for commissions. From that day, Llewellyn and I decided to do something about it, and Switchd was born.
We started building Switchd in 2017 and immediately helped friends and family save between £500-£600 a year on their energy bills.
We continued to iterate and develop the product before opening to the wider public in May 2017, quickly growing to over a thousand customers on the platform.
How difficult was the start and what challenges you had to overcome?
In my view, ensuring you build a product that customers want is the biggest challenge when you start out. When we started Switchd we set out to launch the product to the public as quickly as possible, so we released it within three weeks, so we could learn from our customers. Regularly speaking to customers about the product was time-consuming and required a lot of resource but ultimately led to us building a product that our customers love.
Who is your target audience?
With two-thirds of the UK population on the most expensive energy tariffs, we are helping all sorts of customers. Typically, our customers are slightly older home owners who are settled in a home and want to deal with their energy bills once and for all.
What is the USP of your start-up?
We offer a simple and impartial service to all customers, guaranteeing they have access to the best tariffs available on the market and are always automatically switched to the best tariff available.By researching over 21,000 tariffs daily, Switchd ensures customers are automatically transferred to the best energy tariff available.
We recently produced research which revealed price comparison sites don’t always offer customers the best deal, with as many as 70% of energy deals hidden to their users.
Can you describe a typical workday of you?
Most mornings I wake up at 6am to walk my dog Roo who then comes to the office for an 8.30am start. Morning metrics and a review of the customers who joined the previous evening is followed by coffee and getting started with my sprint. This could be coding, partner meetings, employee feedback or strategy sessions. At the end of each day we all stand up and review the progress of the day and plan actions for tomorrow.
Most evenings I then kick box or play squash before heading home and cooking dinner – I am a very keen cook!
Where do you see yourself and your start-up Switchd in five years?
In five years, we want to be helping 100,000s of households, saving £10s of millions every year on their household bills.
What 3 tips would you give other Start-up founders on the way?
My 3 tips would be:
Learn as much as you can from others who’ve come before you. I’d really recommend reading the Lean Startup by Eric Ries and Scrum by Jeff Sutherland, two books that really define our work practices here at Switchd
Define your values. We took 3 days when we started Switchd to define what type of company we want to be and then wrote it on a wall in the office. As a founder you become very busy, so having a reference point for the culture of your company is very important.
Celebrate success. As a founder you are always striving for more and it can be easy to forget how much you’ve achieved. Celebrating success fixes milestones in your head and is a great motivation when times aren’t so good.
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Thank you Tom Rogers for the Interview
Statements of the author and the interviewee do not necessarily represent the editors and the publisher opinion again.