Switching Programme

It is vital that energy consumers can easily, and with confidence, switch their energy supplier. Switching strengthens competition in the energy market, which in turn benefits consumers.

The current switching arrangements, developed in the late 1990s, are complex for suppliers and can lead to delays, errors and costs, which are often borne by consumers. 

Through the Switching Programme we are taking steps to radically transform current switching arrangements, and deliver faster, more reliable switching for consumers.

Our scope and approach

For full details of our scope and approach to the programme, see our:

You can access all consultations and decisions related to the programme, along with documents from ad hoc workshops, in the publications and updates section below.

Programme Products

The links below provide access to the approved E2E products that form Design Baseline 3 for the new switching arrangements. 

These products are informed by our Blueprint Phase policy papers. For a full list of the policy papers, please select 'show' on the drop down menu below.

Have a query?

Some responses to frequently asked questions can be found here.

If you have questions about the development of the new switching arrangements which are not covered above, please get in touch. 

If you would like to raise a change request, please see our change management page.

How we will engage

For regular updates and programme information of recent and upcoming activity, please subscribe to our monthly newsletter by emailing us at switching.programme@ofgem.gov.uk

We will publish regular updates and outputs from our each of our working groups.

If you want to attend or would like further information about the issues being discussed at any of these meetings, please get in touch.

Enactment Phase governance

The governance requirements for the programme are different for the different phases. During the Enactment phase, governance will undergo a staged transition towards the proposed DBT phase governance structure. The intention is that the higher-level decision making bodies, such as the SRO, advised by Programme Board and the SPDG will continue, with a membership and Terms of Reference refresh.

Our proposed governance structure is illustrated on page 85 of the Switching Programme Outline Business Case and Blueprint phase decision. Ofgem is currently in the process of finalising the Terms of Reference refresh, which we intend to publish shortly.

High Level Plan

For details of major programme deliverables and timeframes, see the High Level Plan.

Draft Design, Build and Test Plan

For details of the design, build and test phase, see the draft DBT Plan.  

Design principles

To guide our assessment of the options being developed for the new switching arrangements, we’ve developed design principles.

Archive: Blueprint and DLS Phase


The Blueprint and DLS Phases were used to establish the policy, and define the design and delivery requirements, that will underpin the new switching arrangements. We have provided the key document and programme information from these phases below: please note these link do not provide the latest Programme position or versions of Programme documents (these can be found above, under Programme Scope). 

Blueprint and DLS Phase Scope

Stakeholder Engagement - Archive

In May 2016 Ofgem modified the Data Communications Company (DCC) licence to set out new obligations for DCC’s role in the Switching Programme. This requires DCC to contribute to the design of the Central Switching Service providing a platform for fast and reliable switching and to procure the Relevant Service Capability that will underpin the new arrangements. We are proposing to further modify DCC’s licence to set out its role during DBT and early years of live operations.

The Switching Programme is now in the Enactment phase and DCC will be commencing the procurement of services. An initial pre-qualification stage will be used to shortlist applicants to receive an Invitation to Tender (ITT) for the services being procured. A selection (pre-qualification) questionnaire (PQQ) will be published late June.

Find out more about upcoming procurement opportunities.

Or email: contact.switching@smartdcc.co.uk

Publications and updates

  • Published: 6th Feb 2017
  • Guidance
  • 1 Associated documents
We've published a list of request for information (RFI) queries around the switching programme.

  • Published: 19th Jan 2017
  • Consultations and responses, Reports and plans
  • 7 Associated documents
Ofgem business case, including 'Design Baseline 1', to support development of new switching arrangements.

  • Published: 18th Jan 2017
  • Open letters and correspondence
  • 2 Associated documents
The Switching Programme Procurement Framework sets out the framework for DCC’s role in procuring the Centralised Registration Service (CRS). It comprises of two letters, exchanged between Ofgem and DCC.

  • Published: 24th Nov 2016
  • Closed: 23rd Dec 2016
  • Consultations and responses
  • 16 Associated documents
Consultation on the approach followed by DCC to develop their draft Business Case. The draft DCC Business Case sets out DCC’s plan of activity and justification for its forecast costs during the Transitional Phase.

  • Published: 24th Nov 2016
  • Closed: 12th Jan 2017
  • Consultations and responses
  • 3 Associated documents
This consultation sets out our proposed approach to determining DCC’s margin allowance and a framework to place margin at risk through a time-based incentive over the Transitional Phase of the Switching Programme.

  • Published: 23rd Nov 2016
  • Agendas, minutes and presentations
  • 1 Associated documents
The Switching Programme's Consumer Awareness Campaign Strategy paper.

  • Published: 9th Jun 2016
  • Agendas, minutes and presentations
  • 15 Associated documents
See the agenda for the sixth meeting of the External Design Advisory Group (EDAG) to the Switching Programme on 16 June 2016.

  • Published: 8th Jun 2016
  • Guidance
  • 1 Associated documents
To guide our assessment of the options being developed for the new switching arrangements, we've developed design principles.

  • Published: 8th Jun 2016
  • Decisions
  • 0 Associated documents
This paper outlines the forward plan and the decisions made by the Switching Programme Design Authority.

  • Published: 8th Jun 2016
  • Agendas, minutes and presentations
  • 1 Associated documents
This document presents the current schedule of working group topics and meeting dates.