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A recent survey of 260 small businesses found that an average of 32% of small businesses have experienced significant customer service problems such as difficulty in contacting their provider, being placed on hold, getting a problem resolved, having to call multiple times, being passed between departments, billing issues and resolution response times. If this sounds like your small business then you are losing valuable time which could be spent making sales - so read this Tip Sheet for guidance on reducing this problem.

Not all providers are equal when it comes to customer service, but all of them are required to do a few things:

  • Deal with your enquiries quickly and effectively

  • Try to resolve any problem the first time you contact them

  • Protect your personal information

You have a right to complain to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) if your provide Is hard to get in contact with, for example if your call isn't answered or does not respond to emails within a reasonable period of time.


  • Doesn't do what they promise

  • Is disrespectful or offensive

  • Refuses to escalate your complaint to a supervisor or manager if you request it

  • Before contacting the TIO, you should try to resolve your complaint with your service provider.

If you have done this, and feel that you have not been able to reach a fair and reasonable resolution then call them or submit a form on-line (see the above web site for details)

Some providers offer a dedicated service desk for small businesses and sell 'Business Grade' products. Many will have Service Level Agreements (SLAs) specifying response and restoration targets and may also provide access to an account manager for customers meeting nominated spending criteria. Ask your provider if these options are available for you.