Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) today announced a new twist to the Customer norms. It has mandated setting up a Toll-Free Number to address queries of mobile users irrespective of their service provider. In a move that will have a huge impact on how customers are dealt with by the service providers TRAI has also issued directives to setup a unified Customer complaint Center.
Since tracking has never been a reality in mobile related complaints, TRAI has also asked Telcos to set up a web-based complaint monitoring system. Further, the service providers will also have to publish bulletins that will contain time frames specified by the authority for various complaints and various procedures related to services like Mobile Number portability (MNP), amount to be deducted, consumer’s rights etc.
So how does it work?
Presently there are three back-end steps to registering & addressing a complaint. The call center is first, which merely accepts the compliant. Thereafter the complaints are pooled at the Nodal Center & finally an appellate authority actually deals with the complaint. The new system does away with the Nodal Center. Further, with an aim to bring in transparency, consumers will get a unique docket number of their complaints valid for at least three months. The date and time of registration and time limit for solving the complaint will be received via SMS.
We ask, will it help?
Well there are two ways to look at it. From a customer point of view, he can get his queries answered from any Mobile Service provider. However, will it give rise to poaching of subscribers from other service providers? One can easily envisage a scenario wherein a customer has called another service provider & its representative starts advising how their service will not have such problems!
The TRAI has surely cracked its whip. Let’s hope the customer is the ultimate winner.