Why Telco Sucks…and why we’re encouraged by that

Written by Markus Scharnowski

Looking back at most places I’ve spent time in, anything telco related typically seems to be looked at as a sort of necessary evil. 

Sometimes it’s pretty bad – like with Cablecom, the internet provider that first showed me the delights of reasonably fast internet back in Switzerland: Their reputation was so bad that in 2011, they changed their brand name to UPC, to then finally in 2016 drop the name Cablecom altogether. Of course, the instant rage fit the sheer mention of the name “Cablecom” produced in many Swiss citizens back then was never mentioned as the official reason for the name change, but the fact that the rebranding was accompanied by a nationwide campaign to boost positive perception of the new brand speaks for itself. 

Other times, it’s bad – but at least entertaining. John Legere, the legendary CEO who “brought back T-Mobile USA from the dead” and guided its fate for the last 10 years could not patch all the issues the carrier was faced with over the years, but at least he was so eccentric and often politically incorrect that the sheer entertainment value he provided definitely swayed the public opinion of his brand for the better. 

Enter Australia. A country the size of the US, but with a fraction of the population, and vast areas uninhabited – setting the scene for a never-ending nightmare for anyone trying to provide any kind of useful service to a significant part of the Australian population. Never before have I experienced such consistently negative reactions to even mentioning “telco” as a word, let alone talking about the fact that I actually work for one. 

But why is that? Is it because of the suboptimally rolled out NBN network? Or because of the wide-ranging gaps in coverage when it comes to 4G? 

1 bar 4G signal, a mere 20km from Melbourne CBD

Yes – it’s probably not the best infrastructure in the world. But given the sheer size of the country and keeping in mind the fact that few people actually “need” Gigabit speeds and beyond at this stage, I dare say the services work as promised – most of the time. 

Not all that bad, for an “up to 50/20” connection. 

So if it’s not really the products themselves – what is the issue? 

Two words: Customer Service. Or the sheer lack thereof. 

When was the last time you called customer service of any telco provider you use, and actually achieved a swift solution to your problem with the first person you spoke with? If you’re anything like me, that would be…never. From navigating your way through endless number menu items to holding the line while listening to music that even back in the 1990s would have been considered torture to many times simply getting disconnected, even getting to a person to speak with sometimes feels like a giant maze with traps all around. And when you finally get to a real person… let’s not go into that. 

The personal stress and resulting dissatisfaction from such experiences are understandably significant. But it’s not only a mental toll we pay – the toll is very much financial, too: Recent studies have shown the appalling quality of customer service by Australian Telco businesses is costing us over 1 billion dollars per year

Turns out it’s not Telco that sucks. It’s customer service of most Telco’s that sucks. 

Which is exactly why we’re excited about being in this industry. With our dedicated Teams of 3, customer service is the highest priority. “I’ve heard that before”, you might be thinking – but not like we mean it. 

Our Teams of 3 stay with you throughout your entire time with us. Your first contact is most likely with a Solution Specialist to determine what exactly the problem is we can solve for you. Once precisely identified, a Project Manager comes in to help design the perfect solution for that specific problem. Any solution is 100% customised for you, the customer: If we’re not 100% happy with it, we won’t sell it to you. Once we are all happy with the proposed solution, the Project Manager will pull in your dedicated Technical Expert to implement the solution as quickly and seamlessly as possible. 

If at any point you experience an issue, or simply have a question – you can call your own team. All teams are named after the NATO phonetic alphabet: Alpha, Bravo…and yes, Whiskey! 

This is our promise to you: You won’t complain about this Telco’s customer service. Not once. 

Are you ready to join hundreds of happy customers? Find out which team will be yours?

Call us on 1800 800 723 or send us a note to gday@switchtelecom.com.au. You’ll be blown away. Guaranteed. 

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