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Our approach for top service quality

“We strive to offer our customers impeccable service. That’s why our staff members are free to decide for themselves, based on the relevant circumstances, how to best help our customers and ensure they enjoy a positive experience. Our solution consists of devoting more time to customers, answering their queries on the spot and with a smile, and being there when they need us. In this way, we transform contact with customers into genuine client relations.

Always available – even in the crisis
Since 2017, we have been able to cut the number of customer complaints in Germany by a total of 75 percent. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, our service technicians were always there for our customers in the reporting year, switching and fixing lines. In 2020, we reduced the proportion of missed technician appointments to less than one percent.

Also in 2020, callers to our hotline had to wait less than two minutes on average to speak with their service team member. The only difference: A total of 16,000 service employees worked from home due to the pandemic, providing customers with continuous and reliable support even during the lockdown.

Customer service from the region for the region
Following a pilot project in Frankfurt, we also set up “Regiocenters” in 2020 in Düsseldorf and Meschede. The teams at the Regiocenters address the needs of their regional customers. From in-house and technical customer service to field service – all the service expertise required is available locally. We automatically forward customers from a region to their Regio team, where they will find a solution to all their needs – mobile network, fixed network, service disruption, or a field service request – with no detours.

Promoting skills
We continuously provide our service employees with training on products and services. They can learn about and try out the latest solutions in specially equipped rooms at our service centers. We have also intensified our personal coaching by team leaders in everyday work. Knowledge databases also make it easier for our employees to deal with our customers’ requests even faster.

The high quality of our services has been independently verified by numerous successes in tests. They show that we are on the right track.

Improving contact and process quality
We want to give all customers the best service experience. To meet that goal, several million responses from our customers are annually collected and analyzed by our quality management team. Customer satisfaction and resolving their request on first contact are our top priorities.

Our surveys are conducted either directly after a contact (for example, via the hotline, in a shop, on a field service call, or after an online inquiry by email or chat) or a completed process (for example, after service provisioning).

If a customer tells us in a survey that their request has not yet been resolved, a callback offer is made to clarify the request once and for all. The results of customer surveys are also used for internal training of our customer advisors.

Regular test wins in comparison tests by leading trade journals corroborate the excellent quality of our customer service.

Measuring customer retention and endorsement

We use the TRI*M img index to gauge customer retention and regularly participate in benchmarking. The recorded data is based on a customer survey conducted in all markets and segments (expect T-Mobile US). To measure the TRI*M value, customers are asked four standardized questions – for example, whether they would recommend Deutsche Telekom to others; their answers are compiled in a key performance indicator. The TRI*M value for the Deutsche Telekom Group is calculated as an overall value from the individual measurement results of the countries or segments.

The Group-wide TRI*M index was 72.2 points in the 2020 reporting year, which constitutes a significant improvement compared to the benchmark value of 67.9 and means the Group exceeded the slight increase it had hoped for. All three operating segments -  Germany, Europe, and TSI - contributed to the positive development with improvements in customer loyalty.

At 66 points, the TRI*M index for Germany was significantly higher than the prior year (63.5) and is more than two points above the competition overall. We also increased the figure in the EU from 65.3 to 69.1, and in TSI from 82 to 89. That means we exceeded our goal of a slight increase. Our goal for 2021 is to achieve a further increase for the Group as a whole.

Customer satisfaction and loyalty scores are factored into both the long-term variable remuneration scheme for our board members and, to an extent, the performance assessments of our managers, meaning some of their variable salary components are linked to these ratings. This key performance indicator is also used as a parameter in the long-term incentive plan for our managers (excluding Board of Management members).