I’m Bibi. I choose Essent! After studying Business administration in Rotterdam, Bibi started out as a Trainee at Essent in 2012. She hadn’t developed any affinity with the energy sector yet back then. ‘I was living in a rented flat in Amsterdam and had never even concluded an energy contract before. But Essent was renowned for having a good and extensive training programme on offer with a lot of focus on personal development, and that triggered something in me. It felt uniquely appropriate to find out which direction I wanted to go in. And that suited me well!’
The little thingsMarried with two children and moving from the Randstad to Brabant. A lot changed in a short period of time but one thing stayed the same, her enthusiasm for working at Essent. ‘I live 20 minutes away from the office, a godsend! The perfect amount of time to wake up properly. And when I arrive, I head straight to the bistro for a lovely espresso to start my day off nicely. Depending on what I have scheduled for that day, I go visit my team or look for a quieter spot. Our office offers lots of opportunities. In all honesty, it's really the little things that make working at Essent extra special to me.’
Customer-facingOf course, it's not only the little things that make Essent such a great employer. ‘I have always been given space and trust to try new things. Thanks to that, I’ve had some great positions, both here in Den Bosch and internationally. I’ve always been able to challenge myself and grow.’
Two years ago, Bibi took her most recent career step and became a Journey Manager. ‘In my previous roles - Strategic Marketer and Development Lead - I spent a lot of time on planning, pilots and experiments. This sees me in good stead in my new role, but now that I am in the middle of operations and customer-facing, I’m learning what I need to take into consideration, if I want to realise new plans successfully. This fits in well with my need to achieve results and make an impact.’
Knowledge of what a customer truly wants‘The adoption of new products, services and processes in particular has always interested me. I didn’t graduate from my studies in ‘innovation’ for nothing. Why does one thing become a success and the other a failure? It's all about finding out what the deeper needs of the customer are. Translating those customer needs into new and improved customer processes is what my team of Journey Consultants and I do at Essent, for both brands Essent and energiedirect.nl. Making sure that customers have insight into their energy consumption, know where they stand, are able to easily organise their own affairs, extend their contracts or get advice on their next step towards sustainability are matters that spring to mind. And doing that consistently across various channels, because it shouldn’t matter whether a customer contacts us using the chat, or by phone and email. We want happy customers!’
In 6th gearWhat are the challenges facing Bibi and her team at the moment? ‘Right at the top of that list is informing and advising customers on their energy consumption and costs properly. This has been a challenge for a little while now because of the energy transition. More and more people want to make their home sustainable. And now the war in Ukraine and the resulting explosion in energy prices has added an extra dimension to that. Customers with the financial capability want to accelerate that change to sustainability and at the same time, the higher prices are creating uncertainty among customers. ‘How high will my energy bill be and can I still afford it?’
The amount of customers taking a closer look at their consumption has tripled in recent months. ‘That's made offering insight into consumption and costs and giving advice even more important. We’ve set the goal of constantly improving in that respect. Whether or not it's related to sustainability, savings or both. We take our customer-facing role very seriously’, says Bibi.
Bibi Kool (38 years old) lives with her husband Stefan and their children Max and Flip in Vught. She likes spending her free time at enjoying good food and drinks with friends and family. ‘I love light, refreshing dishes. For instance, I often make dishes from the Ottolenghi books and the book I bought most recently was ‘Much More Veg’ , which I highly recommend! On my Wednesdays off and at weekends I like to spend time with my family, preferably outdoors so we take a lot of trips. My favourite way to unwind is yoga, which is the perfect counterbalance to running after my kids.