Among the four biggest wireless carriers in America (namely Verizon Wireless, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint), AT&T has emerged as the network with the best customer care performance, at least according to a survey conducted by market research firm JD Power. In collecting data for its study, JD Power looked into a number of key aspects, which include the quality of phone call conversations by way of automatic response systems and customer service staff, walk in visits at retail outlets, and online via the mobile operator’s official website, social media account, and chat messages.
AT&T (which is second biggest in the US wireless industry, next only to Verizon Wireless) performed quite impressively in the areas of online and retail stores, and managed to garner above average scores in all four service channels. The wireless carrier got a score of 820 (on a scale of a thousand points). On second place is T-Mobile, securing a score of 815. Rounding the third and fourth places are Verizon Wireless, which got a score of 797, and lastly, Sprint, who was awarded a score of 750.
Among zero contract mobile operators, Consumer Cellular captured the highest score. Based on JD Power’s survey, Consumer Cellular scored 878 points. On second place is Cricket Wireless (a prepaid brand of AT&T’s) and then Boost Mobile (Sprint’s own prepaid arm). Net10 was ranked dead last among eight non-contract wireless carriers.
Industry watchers have begun to notice that today’s mobile users are now increasingly exploring online means in order to avail of customer care from their respective wireless carriers. 47 percent of mobile users who had a customer service contact during the previous three months used the Internet. That percentage represents an increase over the 42 percent reported only half a year ago.
When it comes to walk in service contacts, 53 percent of the Big Four’s customers availed of customer care via walk in visits in retail stores, an improvement over the 49 percent registered during the previous six month period. 42 percent took full advantage of automated response systems, and then directly conversed with a customer service representative. Almost three fourths of the participants of JD Power’s survey who contacted their wireless carrier through online means did so with the use of a smartphone or tablet device.
Kirk Parsons, the senior director and technology, media and telecom practice leader of JD Power, noted that the self service channels had the biggest improvements in terms of the volume of contacts. Parson observes that this may be a sign that mobile users of today are changing their preferences when it comes to availing of customer care.
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