Thursday, 17 December 2015 11:30

TIO says telco complaints down 15% ‘in context’


In the July to September 2015 quarter, the TIO’s ‘Complaints in Context’ report shows complaints as a proportion of telco’s services in operation ‘dropped a further 15%’. 

The Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman’s (TIO) ‘Complaints in Context’ latest quarterly report has been released today, jointly published with the Communications Alliance

The TIO’s report can be seen here with all of the details, while the Comms Alliance’s thoughts are here - PDF Link (as well as being printed below). 

The TIO says that ‘the result for all participating providers, 5.5 complaints per 10,000 SIO, has decreased 15.4% when compared to April-June 2015 (6.5) and 20.3% when compared to July-September 2014 (6.9).’

The number of new complaints in July September 2015 was 14.8 per cent lower than in the same period last year and is at its lowest level since July-September 2006.

All industry participants’ complaints per 10,000 SIO decreased in the period, reflecting a continued reduction in the number of new complaints to the TIO.

Telstra recorded its lowest result to date at 5.5 per 10,000 SIO.

With 4.1 complaints per 10,000 SIO, Vodafone’s result was almost a third of that reported in the same period last year (12.2).

Optus complaints per 10,000 SIO reduced by 21.2 per cent from 8.5 in April-June 2015 to 6.7 in July-September 2015. amaysim and Pivotel both saw reduced complaints per 10,000 SIO during July-September 2015, with amaysim’s result of 0.9 reflecting an improvement of 50% from the previous quarter.

Between July and September 2015 there were 26,023 complaints, a 16.5% reduction, 2,358 Level 2 conciliations, a 1.4% increase, nine Level 3 investigations, a 25% reduction, zero Level 3 investigations and 11,395 enquiries, a 4.2% increase.

Billing and payments were the top complaint issue at 44.3%, with the percentage showing the proportion of each issue category in new complaints received.

  • Customer service was at 39.8%
  • Faults at 30.4%
  • Complaint handling at 26.9%
  • Contracts at 23.9%
  • Credit management at 17%
  • Connection issues at 12.1% and
  • Other, which includes ‘transfer, privacy, directories, land access, disability, phone cards and payphone’ at 5.9%.

New complaints by service type in the Jul to Sep period were:

  • Mobile: 10,340 - 40%
  • Internet: 8,454 - 32%
  • Landline: 7,229 - 28%

More below, please read on.

Communications Alliance comment:

Complaints in context to the TIO have fallen to record lows in the September 2015 quarter.

The latest results show an average of 5.5 complaints per 10,000 services across the five participating companies during the quarter — 33% better than when the data was first collected for the March quarter of 2014.

Encouragingly, every one of the participating companies recorded an improved performance in the most recent exercise, compared to the previous quarter — which itself had generated a then-record low average figure.

Vodafone’s figure of 4.1 complaints per 10,000 services represents a 78.9% improvement since the January-March 2014 quarter.

It is also encouraging to see that the remedial measures put in place by Optus after some recent operational issues have generated a strongly improved performance in the most recent quarter.


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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.



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