Senator the Hon Stephen Conroy
Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy
Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Digital Productivity
TIO reports reduction in telecommunications consumer complaints
The Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, has today praised the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) for its role in a reduction in consumer complaints during the last financial year.
The TIO’s 2012 Annual Report shows:
- The TIO received 193,702 new complaints in 2011-12, a two per cent reduction compared with the previous year
- Complaints made against the three major telecommunications companies (Telstra, Optus, and Vodafone) declined in the last quarter of 2011-12
- Consumer satisfaction with the TIO in hearing and resolving complaints is over 90%
- The TIO is increasing its engagement with small businesses.
"The impressive decline in customer complaints reflects the importance of the TIO, as well as the industry’s commitment to improving its customer service and complaints handling processes," Senator Conroy said.
"As an independent referee of telco complaints, the TIO not only ensures that complaints are heard and resolved, they are a permanent reminder to service providers of their obligations to their customers.
"While the decrease in overall complaints is encouraging, complaints associated with smart phones and tablets, such as bill shock, roaming charges, and data usage, continue to be of concern to the TIO.
"The telecommunications industry should be mindful of this, and ensure they do what they can to resolve complaints as they arise.
The TIO was put in place by the Keating Government in 1993 and the Gillard Government has built on this initiative with the Telecommunications Consumer Protections (TCP) Code, which came into effect on 1 September 2012.
"The new TCP Code presents industry with an opportunity to address the handling of complaints more effectively, as well as vital issues like billing, customer service and contracts."
Date: 29 October 2012
Contact: Adam Sims 0408 258 457