Telco complaints fall, but still too high: ACMA

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Telco complaints fall, but still too high: ACMA

Telco complaints are steadily dropping, but are still too high according to the Australian Communications and Media Authority.

The communications watchdog published data from its report into telco complaints-handling for FY18-19, revealing that a total of 1.4 million complaints were made to telcos during the year.

During the year, complaints remained steady in the first three quarters, reaching a high of 124 complaints per 10,000 services in the second quarter, before dropping in the final three months from June to August 2019 to 97 per 10,000 services.

The median time taken to resolve complaints also fell from six days to five.

ACMA chair Nerida O’Loughlin said the figures demonstrated that initiatives from the government and telco sector are gaining traction, but acknowledged complaint levels are still too high.

Complaints about voice-only services on the NBN were the highest of any service, averaging 494 complaints per 10,000 services, followed by fixed broadband with 369 complaints.

ACMA said it has taken action to identify and amend the root cause of these complaints.

Meanwhile, complaints about NBN services dropped overall, averaging 193 per 10,000 services. Satellite services received the lowest rate of complaints with 54, compared to fibre-to-the-curb technology recorded 744 complaints in the first quarter, eventually dropping to 282 by the end of the year.

O’Loughlin said this demonstrated that the maturity of technology has an impact on the number of complaints.

“Some of the challenges with the HFC rollout appear to be represented in the complaints data, with complaints peaking in the third quarter at 387 complaints per 10,000 services and declining to 300 in the final quarter,” said O’Loughlin.

“Finally, it is good to see that referral rates to the TIO are down to 5.4 per cent from a peak of 10.9 per cent with the total number of TIO complaints remaining high and averaging 24,956 for the year.”

You can read ACMA’s full report here.

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