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Which? survey ranks energy and telecoms companies lowest for customer service

17th Sep 2015
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Energy and telecoms providers prop up the annual Which? customer service survey, covering the UK’s 100 biggest brands.

Asking 3,400 consumers their opinion of which companies ranked highest for customer service, the survey found ScottishPower had the lowest rating with a customer score of 59%, just ahead of Npower with 61%.

And whilst the UK energy sector’s ‘big six’ continue to rank poorly, the survey did see some improvement for certain providers compared with last year’s results, including British Gas, EDF Energy and E.ON.

On the other hand, telecoms providers BT (63%), TalkTalk (64%), Vodafone (66%) and EE (68%) languished towards the bottom of the rankings for the first time, setting a worrying precedent for the telecoms sector.

2015 has been a particularly tricky year for BT and its subsidiary, EE, who have come under fire for various customer service practices.

BT has spent most of the year fighting competitors who want its broadband division, Openreach to be spun off as an independent company, while EE was accused at the start of the year of trying to turn good customer service into a monetary exercise.

Both companies received another shared and unwanted accolade, having been rated as the two slowest organisations to respond to customer service queries on Twitter, by a study in February.

“Long suffering customers deserve better, as once again essential services that we all rely on have been caught falling down on how they treat people,” says Which? executive director, Richard Lloyd.

“Nearly nine in 10 told us poor service puts them off using a company again, so there is a clear incentive to offer service that makes customers smile. Companies at the bottom of our survey should take note: make your customers seethe and you will pay the price.”

In contrast, and in keeping with KPMG Nunwood’s 2015 UK Excellence Report, cosmetics brand, Lush came top of the table for service, with a score of 89%, followed by First Direct (86%), Lakeland (84%) and The Body Shop, John Lewis and Waitrose (all 83%).

The Which? survey also found that 78% of consumers feel customer service is important when deciding which companies to use, and 88% of people said poor service puts them off using a brand again.

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