Management Approach

Managing Social and Relationship Capital

We build trust by engaging and creating mutual benefits with our stakeholders for a more sustainable community and hence business.

Stakeholder engagement

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In our Value Framework, we have published our Commitment to communicate regularly with our stakeholders, providing open and transparent channels for their input, reviewing and considering that input and responding in a timely manner to their concerns about our business. All CLP employees are expected to conduct their engagements with stakeholders in accordance with the Code of Conduct and the Value Framework at all times.

See “Commitments On Communications and Reporting”

 

We have a Stakeholder Engagement Framework that guides us through the steps of:

  • aligning the engagement objectives with our business objectives; 
  • mapping issues and concerns;
  • identifying relevant stakeholders; 
  • developing a communications and engagement plan; 
  • conducting the engagement activities; and
  • capturing feedback and reporting on the outcomes. 

The effectiveness of our approach to stakeholder engagement is reflected by a wide range of measures, including: stakeholder feedback comments; inputs and outcomes of engagements; positive and/or negative news about the company; brand perception ratings; recognition and awards; and many others.

Strategies and procedures

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Our business activities involve a diverse range of stakeholders, but we have identified the key stakeholder groups who are instrumental to the success of our business and who are also included in our Value Framework. Here we present who our key stakeholders are, why they are important and how we communicate with them.

We are committed to responding in a timely manner to our stakeholders’ concerns about our business, which vary depending on the location and context and therefore require different actions or responses. The main topics arose during the year, as well as the actions undertaken by CLP to address them are reported in the results section in Materiality Assessment.


Key Stakeholders Engagement Channels
Provide Capital
  • Lenders*
  • Investors / Shareholders
  • Annual General Meetings
  • Annual and Interim Reports
  • Announcements and Circulars
  • Shareholders' visit programme
  • Meetings and roadshows
  • ESG meetings
Grant License to Operate
  • Governments &
  • Regulators
  • Regular working meetings
  • Regular performance reporting
  • Written responses to public consultations
Purchase Fuel, Materials, Equipment & Services
  • Suppliers & Contractors
  • Regular supplier management meetings and engagements (from operational to senior management)
  • Periodical supplier performance evaluations (Supplier Assessment System)
Operate Our Business
  • Employees
  • Employee Engagement Surveys
  • Employee feedback channels (forms, suggestion box, Townhall meetings, etc.)
  • Regular management communications and roadshows
  • Two-way consultations (e.g. joint consultative committees in Hong Kong)
  • Employee Newsletters and Broadcasts
  • CLP Intranet Portal
  • Daily contact on employee related issues through human resources account management role
  • Discussion with trade union representatives in locations where collective bargaining power is recognised
Purchase Our Products / Services
  • Residential Customers
  • Commercial and Industrial Customers
  • Electricity Boards and Grid Companies
  • Customer Consultative Group, Local Customer Advisory Committees
  • SME Consultative Group
  • Customer satisfaction surveys and feedback forms
  • Customer Service Centres and Customer Interaction Centre
  • Online service portals
  • Account managers
Share Knowledge & Build Trust
  • Academia and Schools
  • Communities, NGOs and Media
  • Industry and Professional Organisations
  • Working Committees, Advisory Committees, panels and meetings
  • Seminars, lectures and workshops
  • Public / community events and partnerships on various initiatives
  • Community investment programmes

*Lenders include perpetual capital securities holders

Most Material Topic : Local Communities

Community investment

Maintaining strong relationships both internally and externally is critical for the sustainability of our business. To ensure we continue to have a social licence to operate, it is critical that the communities in which we operate not only trust us, but also view our company as one that contributes to the sustainable development of their future.

We strive to build and maintain the trust of the communities that we provide power to and operate in, so that we can continue to contribute to their development into healthy, resilient and sustainable communities.

As enshrined in CLP’s Value Framework, CLP Cares for the Community and commits to making significant contributions to programmes that have a positive impact on community development for the short and long term. In line with the recently updated CLP Group Community Initiatives, Sponsorship and Donation Policy on community engagement, we aim to:

  • Support projects or programmes that reflect the needs and expectations of local communities and are sensitive to prevailing cultures, traditions and values; 
  • Provide support to projects or programmes that are systematically managed with clearly-identified objectives and expected outcomes; 
  • Engage in long-term partnerships with credible international, national, regional and local community organisations, non-governmental organisations and charities; 
  • Focus our support on projects or programmes that offer the opportunity for our employees to be involved in the activities; and
  • Evaluate regularly, our contributions as well as the outcomes and impacts that have been achieved
Strategies and procedures

Our community initiatives focus on four pillars: Environment, Education and Development, Community Wellbeing and Arts and Culture. These are aligned with some of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially SDG4 Quality Education which aims to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

Monitoring and follow-up

To better evaluate the social impact of our community initiatives, we have commissioned a benchmarking study of different socio-economic impact measurement tools so that we can identify the most suitable means to evaluate the effectiveness of our contribution in the community and make recommendations for the next step.

A standardised online reporting system was launched in 2016 to improve the integrity of our community-related data across the Group. Information on community initiatives programmes collected includes the theme, partner, spending, beneficiary, volunteer hours and impact. The establishment of the system has enhanced the overall effectiveness and efficiency in reviewing and reporting our community initiatives.

We also conduct surveys to help us understand how well our engagement and social investment activities align with our communities’ expectations. In Hong Kong, we conduct a public perception survey every year to understand the public’s view on various aspects of the electricity industry as well as the performance of CLP Power Hong Kong. Similarly, since 2014, EnergyAustralia has undertaken community perception surveys to better understand the needs and interests of local stakeholders and communities in which we operate.


Community relations

Managing our effects on community – All our power plants have a potential to impact local communities, in both positive and negative ways. We try to mitigate any concerns through the following measures:

  • Communicating with local governments to explain the nature of the project before construction starts and obtain their help in liaising with local people;
  • Following all applicable laws and regulations regarding land acquisition and environmental impact; 
  • Providing employment opportunities where possible;
  • Contributing to local services such as schools or hospitals; and
  • Offering to receive local people and school children at the plant and explain what we do.

CLP abides by established government regulations on provisions for people who are resettled by government for the purpose of building power stations. While resettlement and compensation are often undertaken by government entities, CLP assumes an active role in the stakeholder consultation process. On the rare occasion, where displacing or negatively impacting existing local communities or indigenous people is inevitable, we would take care to respect them and make every effort not to violate their rights.

Monitoring and follow-up

Grievance channels – Most markets have regulatory bodies which have formal grievance channels for specific issues, such as the local environmental protection department or agency for environmental-related issues or consumer or energy regulator for customer-related issues. We have a wide range of open/public engagement channels through which we can receive any, concerns, interests or feedback at any time during the year. General complaints against the company are handled by relevant departments in consultation with our Public Affairs team who work with the relevant colleagues to resolve the issue at hand. Such feedback is then taken as a consideration and incorporation in operation improvement.

Most Material Topic : Public Policy

Public policy positions

Our industry is heavily regulated so policies and laws are naturally a major influence on our business. Participation in public policy discussions enables us to stay ahead of such developments and can inform our strategic decision-making, as well as support policymakers shape sound policies that balance the often conflicting stakeholder expectations on the economic, social and environmental dimensions of energy.

In our Value Framework, we are committed to contributing to the development of sound government policies and laws that balance the social, economic and environmental needs and support the long-term development of the communities we serve.

Strategies and procedures

It is our policy to remain politically neutral and to avoid making political contributions. For public policy developments which apply to the electricity industry, we take public policy positions and participate in the discussions. We feel that in bringing our industry expertise to the table, we can add value to the discussion on how best to structure rules for our industry going forward, as both technology and public demand for our product evolves.

Our responses to public policy consultations as well as our key company positions, such as on climate change, are all published and accessible on our company websites.


Customer engagement channels

In order to gauge the performance of our retail businesses, we ask our customers how we are doing via customer satisfaction surveys that we conduct on a regular basis. In addition to gauging the performance of our retail business based on satisfaction, we also assess our performance based on the number of customer enquiries and complaints.

Hong Kong

Our skilled and well-trained staff in these centres is at the frontline of handling these enquiries and complaints. The Customer Interaction Centre (CIC) provides one-stop shop customer services in order to maintain good customer relationships to help word-of-mouth promotion of CLP services. All enquiries will be resolved by the frontlines where possible. For unresolved issues, cases will be passed to the Customer Care team which is the centre of excellence for handling general customer complaints and specific enquiries regarding high consumption patterns.

CIC has an internal service pledge to follow up verbal complaints within 24 hours and to acknowledge written complaints within two working days. All escalated cases will be studied thoroughly and resolutions developed for the customers.

In 1992, CLP Power Hong Kong pioneered the formation of a customer advisory body, CLP Customer Consultative Group (CCG), which was the first amongst public utilities in Hong Kong in. CCG aims to enhance our relationship with customers, improve customer services, and ensure that the ever increasing demands of customers are addressed. CCG Members regularly review customer written complaints and determine if they are justified and have been adequately dealt with. Over the last 25 years, CCG membership has expanded to represent a wide spectrum of customers, growing from 5 to 14 members.

Subsequent to success of CCG, we set up CLP Local Customer Advisory Committees (LCACs) in 1994 to strengthen customer communication. Currently, there are 14 LCACs across all CLP supply areas, and they comprise of representatives from different sectors. We meet with LCAC members quarterly to take their advice on quality and efficient customer service, and seek collaboration opportunities in the respective district.

Find out more about the CCG and LCACs

Australia

As part of our corporate strategy, EnergyAustralia is committed to making our customers’ lives simpler and better by delivering the services they need and value and delivering on what we promise. To measure our effectiveness in delivering on these values, EnergyAustralia has been measuring our Strategic Net Promoter Score (NPS) to assess customer satisfaction across all our customers since 2012.  This is measured monthly using an online survey amongst a representative group of customers.

In addition to Strategic NPS, we have also been measuring a Transactional Net Promoter Score, which tracks customer satisfaction in relation to specific customer interactions (for example, following a phone call with the contact centre or web chat with the digital team), which provides more direct feedback for our frontline staff.

Read more about how we meet customers’ needs
Material Topic : Access
Material Topic : Provision of Information

Access to electricity

Electricity is an essential service and we work hard to ensure all members of our community can access our products and services. We have services in place that ensure most challenges including language, culture, literacy or disability do not prevent people from accessing and using our products. In both our Hong Kong and Australian retail businesses, we avoid disconnection of our accounts and try to work out special arrangements for non-payments.


Hong Kong

In our Hong Kong retail business, we have special arrangements for non-payment customers including programmes to help customers who might be at risk of supply disconnection. Payment deferral or interest free payment by instalment is offered for demonstrated cases of hardship.

  • Braille bill and Accessible Green Bill (voice-over) – to enable visually impaired customers to understand their electricity bill statement in a more convenient manner.
  • Concessionary Tariff for the Elderly for customers aged 60 or above who live either alone or with other similarly qualified elderly, and who are relying on or entitled to Comprehensive Social Security Assistance.
  • Just in Time Service at Customer Service Centres, Eco Home and Smart Energy Experience Centre where customers can borrow an umbrella and/or power bank free of charge.

Australia

EnergyAustralia’s ‘EnergyAssist’ vulnerability programme assists our customers experiencing financial difficulty in many ways, including tailored payment solutions, payment matching, debt waivers, appliance replacements and energy efficiency advice (over the phone and in- home visits).

EnergyAustralia’s foundation Financial Inclusion Action Plan (FIAP), which is currently underway with 5 actions completed and another 11 in progress, is working to:

  • Improve our understanding of why and how our customers can face financial exclusion, particularly those who are over-represented.
  • Understand how we can improve our products, services, policies and practices to better support vulnerable customers.
  • Help our employees better understand financial inclusion, the issues that affect it and how they can best support our customers.
Find out more about EnergyAustralia’s FIAP

On 8th June 2017 EnergyAustralia publicly announced it would commit an additional A$10 million to financial and other support for some of its most vulnerable customers, at a time of rising electricity and gas prices. In the announcement, EnergyAustralia committed to consulting on how best to apply the additional funds, with an emphasis on energy efficiency and measures that provide lasting, long-term relief and stated that some of the funding will also support initiatives arising from its Financial Inclusion Action Plan (FIAP).

We provide the following services for customers with special needs in Australia:

  • Interpreter services for those who have a first language other than English;
  • Webchat and Telephone Typing Services (TTS) machine for the hearing impaired; and
  • For the vision impaired, we have a number of services, such as Braille billing and large format bill print.

Information on these services is easily accessible on the EnergyAustralia website and on customers’ bills.