Telecommunications Dispute Resolution service (TDR) is here to help Kiwis resolve issues with their broadband, mobile and home phone providers, and every six months we share a snapshot of what we are seeing.
Our report for the second half of 2022 is now available. In this report we provide insights from 1 July to 31 December 2022:
Overview of this period
In 2022, TDR launched its first major advertising campaign across radio, TV, and social media. This has had a big impact, with more Kiwis accessing our services as a result. Our average monthly website users were three times higher during the campaign. In the April – September period, the average amount of complaints per month increased to 302.5. This is up 53% from 2020 (197.8) and 88% from 2021 (160.8) for the same six months. We’re delighted with the results and pleased to see awareness of TDR growing. This has had a positive impact on the volume of complaints made to our service during this period.
In total, 1,921 Kiwis contacted TDR from 1 July through to 31 December 2022. This almost equalled levels seen across the full year of 2020/21 year (1,940 complaints), which was a quieter year in volume for TDR, due to the strong efforts made by telecommunications providers to support New Zealanders through the lockdown era. Since then, our volumes are returning to normal in part due to the resumption of billing collections by phone and internet providers, but also due to the increased awareness efforts noted above. In 2022 alone, we have seen an increase of 53% from the first half of the year (1,253) to the second half (1,921).
While the overall volumes of complaints are up, there hasn’t been huge changes in the individual complaint categories. The top themes follow the same order, with differing root causes. Notably billing complaints have risen by 5% and customer service complaints have declined by 3.6%. Across the board, TDR continues to resolve complaints as early as possible, with almost 97% of issues resolved during our first step. Of the 1,492 complaints that were resolved or closed during this period, 3 were settled by facilitation, 18 were resolved by mediated agreement and 29 required TDR’s adjudicators to make a decision.
While this report relates to late 2022, at the time of writing we are seeing the significant effects of Cyclone Gabrielle which brought with it widespread devastation to parts of the North Island. Our thoughts are with all those families who have lost their homes and livelihoods. Many more experienced extended power cuts, resulting in phone and internet services being down. We are aware of the great efforts made by our scheme members to restore services, such as deploying technicians, laying new cables, and arranging back-up generators and batteries, in order to stand up services as quickly as possible. For customers who are still affected, we encourage you to contact your provider so they can get your device and services back up and running. If the issues remain ongoing or if you need some extra help to resolve things with your provider, TDR is here.
One big initiative underway is around the framework and governance of TDR. The TCF will be undertaking a consultation soon on the new proposed Constitution, Terms of Reference and Customer Care Code for TDR. We encourage you to take part and share your feedback as part of this process. Following this, the updated TDR scheme will be looking for an independent chair. Watch this space!
We hope you find this report useful and learn more about how TDR can help untangle issues. We are free and independent, so please get in touch if you need some assistance resolving a complaint with your phone or internet provider. We also welcome your suggestions on how to improve our service and reports, so please feel free to contact us by email at email@example.com or by freephone on 0508 98 98 98.
For more information
To find out more about TDR, please visit www.tdr.org.nz.
For media enquiries, please contact Nora.McGlinchey@FairWayResolution.com.