Customer service quality, one of the most common things wireless telephone users complain about, appears to be receiving the attention it deserves from the carriers. 81% of wireless customers who contacted their carrier with a problem reported that the problem was resolved in a 'timely manner,? according to survey results released this week by J.D. Power and Associates. This is a 6% improvement over 2004. J.D. Power credited the increase largely to efforts by carriers to increase the reliability of their networks. Issues related to call quality, such as dropped calls and coverage problems represented 28% of customer service calls, compared with 48% in 2004. Among the five biggest national wireless providers, T-Mobile continues to lead the pack in overall customer satisfaction, the sixth consecutive reporting period that the company has led the industry in this metric. Interestingly, AT&T edged out Verizon Wireless for second place on the survey. In the past, AT&T (then known as Cingular) lagged behind the industry average in this area. Alltel and perennial customer satisfaction doormat Sprint-Nextel both came in below average in the J.D. Power rankings. Overall, billing questions continue to be the most common reason for customer service calls, with 43% of calls pertaining to billing issues. By far the most common way for customers to contact their carriers was by telephone (73%) followed by retail stores (23%) and e-mail/Internet (4%). As carriers are increasingly offering similarly priced plans and handsets, it is important for consumers to consider a company's customer service reputation in choosing their carrier, since 40% of wireless customers will contact customer service at least once during the year. Consumers should not make the choice of wireless provider lightly. With most consumers opting for 1 or 2-year contracts, the relationship with a carrier is likely to be a long-term one. To read more about the J.D. Power survey, click here.
Source: Telecommunications Research and Action Center. http://www.trac.org