Complaint handling tops the list

08 04 2009

The TIO’s  recently released December 2008 quarter complaints statistics identify complaint handling as a problem area for ISPs and Telcos.

The TIO statistics show that complaints around complaint handling are increasing across all service segments:

Mobile services:

  • Provisioning (an increase of 37.7 per cent, from 297 to 409)
  • Customer Transfer (up 40.5 per cent, from 412 to 579)
  • Complaint Handling (up 25 per cent, from 4,340 to 5,427)

Landline services:

  • Complaint Handling (increasing by 55.1 per cent, from 3,957 to 6,137)
  • Phonecard (up 70.1 per cent, from 281 to 478)
  • Disability (up 117.4 per cent, from 46 to 100)
  • Billing and Payments (up 40 per cent, from 6,999 to 9,796)

Internet services

  • Complaint Handling (rising 31.5 per cent, from 2,782 to 3,657)
  • Credit Management (up 30.7 per cent, from 1,177 to 1,538).

The statistics are a timely reminder of the Complaint Handling obligations contained in the Telecommunications Consumer Protections Code C628:2007.

Clause 9 of the TCP Code imposes a number of obligations, the core of which are:

  1. (clause 9.1.1) having a complaint handling process;
  2. (clause 9.1.2) having a documented complaint handling policy;

It is also a requirement under clause 9.1.4 of the TCP Code that:

Suppliers must give the TIO a copy of their internal Complaint handling policy and advise the TIO of any significant changes within 7 days of the change, or as soon as practicable after that time.

The success of compliance can in large part be impacted by staff training and awareness of the procedures and policies. This needs to be addressed to ensure effective TCP Code compliance.

Non-compliance may cause the ACMA to take action by issuing formal directions or taking other enforcement action.

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