SSH2: Heat Plans – Made to measure

Published: 8 August 2019

Introduction

Decarbonising heat is the biggest challenge the UK faces in terms of transforming the energy system to meet carbon reduction targets and achieve our clean growth ambitions.

Energy Systems Catapult is delivering the UK’s largest smart, consumer-focused project aimed at overcoming the barriers to the decarbonisation of residential heat – the Smart Systems and Heat (SSH) programme.

SSH Phase 2 (2017-2019) focused on running consumer trials of smart energy services, exploring new business models and market structures (including interoperability) and developing Local Area Energy Plans within three local authorities areas. SSH2 was funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

 

There has been a lot of talk about selling Heat as a Service lately, and for good reason. Advocates claim it could help everyone get more value from the energy system. This insight paper details some of key benefits of ‘Heat Plans’, where you sell Warm Hours of energy instead of kilowatt hours, and gives a four-step guide to designing a service customers will love.

Key points

  • Use data to learn what kind of experience people will want: To design a great heat service, you need to know what people really want. To find that out you will need data.
  • Create a service language people can understand: People need to understand your service before they will buy it. Mobile has texts and minutes, but heating is confusing. People don’t understand kilowatt hours, so you need a new language.
  • Find ways to add value to your core service: Usage data can show you new ways to enhance consumers’ experiences. Consumer behaviour patterns that break away from the norm can indicate an unmet need.
  • Give consumers control over which options they buy: When you know what your customers want and you can explain your service, you can make them an offer they will like.