Broadband News

Latest Ofcom complaint data shows who needs to do more

With our user forums and consumer ratings system it is always interesting to see how individual opinions vary so much from the average and another metric that can be tracked over time is the level of complaints that Ofcom registers and the industry regulator has just published its latest figures for the two years up to the end of December 2013.

Ofcom fixed broadband complaint data up to Dec 2013
Click image for larger version

The above chart is the same data format as we featured back in 2012, and shows how much things can vary over time. These latest figures which show BT having the highest proportion of complaints for Aug, Nov, Dec 2013 will are obviously bad news for BT, but in terms of their own individual performance December 2013 has been their best performing month for two years, unfortunately for BT, providers like EE and TalkTalk have improved how they handle complaints or are simple generating a smaller volume of things to upset customers. Once you aggregate the results into a single quarterly figure, this is the first quarter BT has been the worst of the five.

The data for Sky and Virgin Media suggests that they are doing things right in terms of customer service having consistently had the lowest proportion of complaints for a long time, and our own ratings put these two providers ahead of the other three for a long time in the Customer Service category.

There is no breakdown of what the complaints actually were, but we are seeing more people posting moans in our BT section about price changes, which may be down to changes in what is free or not free with the voice line rental plus people are seeing price rises on their service when new customers are being charged less. Another favourite is where a new feature is added to a package or upgrade made available and it is offered to existing customers who either don't hear the warning about this extending their contract, or it is quickly glossed over during the sales spiel. It is a good idea if buying over the telephone to keep notes of the call or when ordering online to take a screenshot of the offer page.


From personal experience both with BT (pre-Openreach era) and Sky, Sky were far worse in dealing with issues than BT. Sky constantly blamed 'BT' for issues that they should have dealt with (either chasing up or booking engineers etc.). It's of my opinion that it's far easier for an ISP to pass on blame to ‘BT’ with most customers not distinguishing between BT retail and Openreach.

  • YaZiN
  • over 6 years ago

ATTN Andrew - I'm guessing you were thinking "shows how much things" when you wrote "shows much much things" right after the image (?)

Incidentally, is it a quirk of my browser (Chrome, on an older iMac running OSX 10.6.8), or does the "larger image" from the 2012 article show up as the same size as the original in the article (whereas on the 2014 item is a significantly larger size) ?

  • NetGuy
  • over 6 years ago

At Yazin, while true about other CP's blaming their supplier I doubt that really weighs into the figures since its not a measurement of overall complaints against BTgroup but rather complaints from their own customers.

Interesting that BT has pretty much stayed static while other CP's have got their acts together, and even slightly better vs this time last year.

Still would like to see some improvement from BT and the constant price rises are disappointing.

  • Spectre_01
  • over 6 years ago

I know 3 BT BB customers and they would all be happy if BT had a technical call centre in UK.
They don't complain about 'having' a problem but do complain about the quality of the tech support.

  • zhango
  • over 6 years ago

@zhango, when I was with BT, I found the forum support very good, if needed you would get a a call from BT UK support from the people who are moderators on the forum, the advice from other forum members is useful too, just like here ;)

  • NilSatisOptimum
  • over 6 years ago

I have a grouse with the way Virgin Media have handled the 152Mb upgrade, making it available to new customers well before existing customers. However I have, over the last 5 years, found customer services to be generally well-informed, polite and decisive; on-shore and off-shore.

  • roughbeast
  • over 6 years ago

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