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By: MarkJ - 25 November, 2011 (10:49 AM)
ofcom uk statisticsofcomOfcom has today released its latest customer satisfaction survey, which covers the UK's biggest fixed line broadband ISPs, Mobile Broadband operators and telephone providers (those with a market share of 4%+). The results, which come from a September 2011 study, reveal that Sky Broadband (BSkyB) and Virgin Media both have the highest overall level of satisfaction for fixed internet providers at 71%.

Sadly Virgin Media has also seen its overall level of dissatisfaction increase from 5% to 10% since February 2011. By comparison Orange has seen its level of satisfaction jump from 40% in 2009 to 70% now, which places it just behind the front two. TalkTalk continued to have the lowest level of satisfaction (62%), although it also had the largest proportion of neutral satisfaction customers (27%).

ofcom broadband isp uk satisfaction q4 2011

An Orange Spokesperson said:

"We're really pleased with our ranking in this latest report, as we've been working hard to substantially improve the level of service we provide our customers over the past 18 months, which has included the transition to a new network with minimal customer disruption.

The broadband sector has traditionally been renowned for underperforming on consumer satisfaction against that of other telecoms services, so we're making it our mission to change this. Moving forward, we're continuing to make a number of significant service improvements to our own offering, the result of which we believe will help us to really deliver on providing a best in class service experience."

Meanwhile satisfaction with customer service continued to remain lower in the fixed broadband (58% - up from 57% in Feb 2011) and landline (61% - up from 58% in Feb 2011) markets compared to pay TV (68% - up from 66% in Feb 2011) and mobile (69% - unchanged from Feb 2011).

Ofcom’s Consumer Group Director, Claudio Pollack, said:

"Ofcom hopes that this research will both incentivise providers to improve all aspects of their customer service, as well as giving consumers valuable information about the standards of customer service when choosing a provider."

As for land line providers (telephone), Ofcom found that there had been "no change in [overall] satisfaction" since the previous February 2011 study was conducted. However, since 2009 the satisfaction with BT and TalkTalk has increased (up from 56% to 72% and 53% to 66% respectively). Sky ( Sky Broadband ) had the highest level of overall satisfaction (75%), just above BT (72%). Virgin Media and TalkTalk were rated the lowest (63% and 66% respectively)

Ofcom similarly claimed that there "has been no notable change" in satisfaction levels for mobile ( Mobile Broadband ) operators since February 2011. O2 continued to retain the top spot with the strongest overall mobile satisfaction (82%), while Three (3) held the lowest level of mobile satisfaction (67%).

Back in January 2011 Ofcom introduced a new single Mandatory Code of Practice, which governs how ISPs and phone providers must handle complaints from consumers (here). In addition all UK ISPs are required to join an Ofcom-approved Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) scheme, such as CISAS or Ombudsman Services (OTELO).

Ofcom now intends to open a monitoring and enforcement programme to check compliance with the above code, which will take place early next year (2012). Companies found to be breaching the rules could face a fine of up to 10% of relevant turnover.
Ofcom UK's Customer Satisfaction Study - September 2011 (PDF)
http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/binaries/research/telecoms-research/customer-service.pdf

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