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Tata to now pay cellphone customers for deficient service
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Quote:After pioneering per-second billing for mobile telephone calls, Tata Teleservices, which offers both GSM and CDMA services, has again unleashed an interesting initiative. It says its subscribers would be compensated if the company failed to meet pre-determined levels of service standards.

The new ‘Customer Service Charter’ for its Tata Indicom users would include five customer commitments such as bill disputes, call drop and handset replacement, among others, which would guarantee pre-determined levels of service and support. And, includes compensation clauses for customers if the set levels are not met, the company said in a statement today.

This would also help TTSL retain customers after implementation of mobile number portability (MNP) from May, which would allow users to change their service providers without changing their telephone numbers. It is expected that at least 15-20 per cent of subscribers would shift service provider with the coming in of MNP. With so many operators with similar rates and no differentiation, it is difficult for a mobile user to make a choice. Customer service is expected to become the key focus area in the time to come.

TTSL, the fifth largest operator in the country, has a little over 60 million mobile subscribers.

Every bill dispute would be resolved within three working days, failing which the company would compensate its subscribers with Rs 25 for every additional day taken to resolve the complaint. Further, the company says call drops would be less than 1.5 per cent of total calls made in a month, failing which TTSL would refund 2.5 per cent of the customer’s last billed amount. A Tata spokesperson said the company’s network is already compliant on checking call drops and no new software was needed.

Subsequently, this service would be extended to all other brands of Tata Teleservices, such as Tata DoCoMo and Virgin Mobile.

The company would also ensure that loaner handsets would be issued to customers if a handset could not be repaired over the counter at TTSL’s I-Care centres.

Subscribers would be offered free trial of any chosen value added service before the purchase. The call centres would be accessible 24 hours and seven days a week and calls would be answered within 90 seconds, failing which the company would call the customer back within two hours.

The initiative was announced to commemorate the 171st birth anniversary of the Tata Group founder, Sir Jamsetji Nusserwanji Tata, the company said.

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