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3 customer service improvements you can expect from Malaysian telcos by the end of this year

Malaysian consumers can look forward to better customer service experience as the major telco players have signed a Consumer First pledge at MCMC. At today’s event, CEOs and representatives from Celcom, Maxis, TM, U Mobile, YTL Communications, Digi and Time have pledged their commitment to better serve consumers and it was witnessed by MCMC Chairman, Al-Ishsal Ishak.

According to Al-Ishsal, the Malaysian market has 41.5 million broadband subscribers and 42.9 million mobile cellular subscribers. MCMC wants to work with telecommunication service providers to ensure that the network quality remains top notch and responses or engagements with consumers are addressed in a quick fashion.

Faster resolution for customer complaints

At the moment, the General Consumer Code (GCC) requires telcos to resolve 90% of customer complaints within 15 working days and 95% of complaints must be resolved within 30 days. To raise the bar for customer service, the guidelines in the code will be enhanced with faster turnaround time.

Telcos will be required to resolve less complex complaints within 3 working days and this can include activation, plan change and line termination. Meanwhile, complex complaints such as fraud and purchases involving 3rd party platforms (Google Play or Apple AppStore) must be settled within 15 working days. These improvements are expected to take effect by the end of 2019.

MCMC also urge telcos to provide priority to the differently-abled, so that they can receive proper attention based on their circumstances.

In Q1 2019, MCMC had recorded 14,182 complaints, which is a 31% decrease compared to Q4 2018 where it had recorded 18,182 cases. 77% of complaints received are on telecommunication issues. The reduction of complaints showed high compliance from telecommunication service providers and the MCMC hopes that this positive trend continues in the subsequent quarters.

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Transparency in telco advertising

The General Consumer Code will tighten consumer protection in the area of advertising to avoid confusion among customers. The terms, conditions and contracts of telco services must be refined and communicated clearly to ensure consumer rights are protected. This is a good move and this will ensure that telcos will be more truthful about their plans and limitation.

Compensation for customers

The MCMC is also drafting the General Compensation Plan (GCP) which will serve as a guide to streamline the compensation plan and ensure consumers receive fast and fair resolution. If there’s unfair conduct by a telco, the guideline will expedite compensation to consumers. MCMC says that the guideline will be a mechanism to improve the cycle time in redressing complaints and to minimise the financial impact on consumers.

At the moment, most telcos do not give any form of compensation especially when it comes to network outages. However, there are some providers that have given free data to all customers as a gesture of goodwill for the inconvenience caused.

Alexander Wong