MCS responds to installer feedback with consultation on scheme simplification

A six-week consultation has been opened on proposals to reform the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) in response to feedback from contractors and customers.

Certification should not be a barrier to industry entry, or a purely administrative burden to contractors.

The proposed changes will deliver a simpler scheme which, MCS says, will deliver the promises of the organisations new leadership to improve accessibility for installers, ensuring that MCS technical requirements are easier to understand and comply with, and deliver a more responsive industry, focused on consistently high-quality outcomes for consumers.

Under its new leadership, MCS has set out to pursue a Mission to “give people confidence in low-carbon energy technology by defining, maintaining and improving quality.”

Crucial to consumer confidence

Acknowledging that the scheme plays a crucial role in consumer confidence in low carbon technologies, installers and installations, the proposed changes follow a rigorous 18-month review of the way the current scheme operates. With input from a wide range of stakeholders, including contractors, trade associations, certification bodies and government departments, the review found that current consumer protections fall short of what consumers expect to be in place resulting in the proposed redevelopment of the scheme which views are now invited on.

There is enormous growth potential in the UK’s small-scale renewables market, and MCS views the scheme, which creates and maintain standards relating to low-carbon products, installers and installations, as key to consumer confidence to invest in renewable technology for their homes and businesses.

A step change

Ian Rippin, CEO of MCS said: “This is the next chapter in the development of MCS and the crucial role that it plays in the adoption of small-scale renewable technology.

Certification should not be a barrier to industry entry, or a purely administrative burden to contractors.MCS

“We wish to deploy a new scheme, focused on establishing the evidence of quality as delivered to customers and less on back-office systems and paperwork. In addition, we plan for a step change in customer service, support and protections. This will be elevated and delivered through a new ‘Customer Duty’ with obligations to safeguard customers embedded directly into the scheme itself.”

Ian added: “The proposed changes make good on a promise that the new leadership of MCS has made to improve the effectiveness of the scheme and give consumers the confidence that they need to embrace home-grown energy.

Challenges and barriers

“We really have listened to the feedback and understand the challenges and barriers that contractors and consumers can face. We are determined that MCS is an enabler – responsible for driving quality up and ensuring consumers are satisfied, to assert ourselves as the recognisable quality mark for the sector.”

Please click here to read the proposals in full and respond.

The deadline for submitting comments on this consultation is 9.00am on Monday 17 July 2023.