Customer Care Satisfaction Higher Among Customers with Mobile Shared Plans
Satisfaction with a carrier's customer care service is higher among US wireless customers subscribing to data-sharing service plans than it is among those subscribing to more traditional service and data plans, according to J.D. Power and Associates.
Overall satisfaction among full-service customers who currently subscribe to a mobile share data plan is 778 (on a 1,000-point scale), compared with 750 among those who subscribe to a more traditional service and data plan.
While satisfaction levels among mobile share plan customers are higher across most of the customer service contact channels, the largest gap in satisfaction between shared data customers and non-share plan customers is in the customer service representative-only channel (826 vs. 771, respectively). Specifically within this channel, knowledge of the service representative (8.3 vs. 7.8, respectively, on a 10-point scale) and timeliness of resolving issues (8.1 vs. 7.3, respectively) are the two areas that drive higher satisfaction performance among share data plan customers.
"The higher levels of satisfaction with shared data plans are partially due to the profile of its customers, particularly the early adopters who changed service offerings once the mobile data share plans were offered," said Kirk Parsons, senior director of wireless services at J.D. Power and Associates. "For example, not only are customers with shared data plans more loyal than those without a shared data plan, but they also have a more positive perception of their carrier, in addition to spending approximately $30 more per household overall."
The study finds that full-service customers with mobile data sharing plans have contacted their wireless carrier more often during the past six months than did those with non-data share plans (51% vs. 42%, respectively); however, full-service customers with a mobile data share plan have also spent an average of nearly one minute more on hold waiting to speak with a service representative, compared with non-data sharing plan customers (5.8 minutes vs. 5 minutes, respectively).
"It's not unexpected that customers who change or upgrade to these new mobile data share plans would initially be more likely to contact their carrier with questions or problems, particularly concerning how these service plans may potentially alter usage habits," said Parsons. "It is important to understand that with any major service change, the need for simplicity is paramount. Additional investment is needed in support services to not only handle the increase in the number of customer interactions, but also provide service representatives with the necessary training and information across all contact channels to offer a timely and superior service experience."
For the fourth consecutive reporting period, Verizon Wireless ranks highest in wireless customer care satisfaction among full-service carriers, with an overall score of 766. Verizon Wireless performs particularly well in telephone contacts that originate in the automatic response system (ARS) channel and are then transferred to a live customer service representative (CSR), and in telephone calls made directly to a CSR.
MetroPCS ranks highest in overall wireless customer care satisfaction among non-contract carriers, with an overall score of 733. MetroPCS performs particularly well in telephone calls made directly to a CSR.