In her message, the Chair describes the new strategic priorities that will guide the CCTS over the next four years. The strategic priorities on which we’ll be focusing—ensuring that the CCTS can continue to do its mandated work as a healthy, resourceful organization, operating effectively and efficiently with the support of all its stakeholders—are particularly important in light of the continuing increases in consumer complaints. In 2018-19 complaints to the CCTS were up 35% over the preceding year.
However despite the increased workload, our statistics show that once again we provided very good and very timely service to our customers. The increased workload did not deter us from our focus on helping consumers and service providers to cooperatively resolve their disputes. Again this year, over 90% of complaints were successfully resolved by the parties following the intervention of the CCTS.
In support of last year’s new Compliance Monitoring Program for service providers, the CCTS published its first Compliance Monitoring Report. Our objective is to ensure that all Participating Service Providers are following the rules, so that customers can receive the best possible service as we deal with their complaints. In particular, our rules require service providers to take certain steps to ensure that customers are made aware of their right of recourse to the CCTS in the event of an unresolved complaint. Our program is focused on working with the service provider community to ensure they are implementing all of the public awareness requirements.
Other significant developments in 2018-19 included the issuance by the CRTC of an Internet Code of Conduct, which the CCTS will administer along with the other three CRTC Codes of Conduct. In developing the Code, the CRTC took note of our 2017-18 Annual Report, which reported a five-year trend of increasing internet complaints. The CCTS was also a lead participant in the CRTC hearing investigating the sales practices of large telecom service providers. We were asked to open the hearing by presenting our statistical analysis of complaints touching these issues, and we identified a mismatch between customer expectations during transactions with their provider and their actual experience. This mismatch became the focus of the CRTC discussions and its final report. It’s gratifying that our research and analysis have been instrumental in these important industry developments.
What does the future hold? It really is true that the only constant is change. The rapid evolution in technology finds its way into complaints, and we regularly need to refresh our expertise and examine our mandate to ensure that we are staying current. But whatever the future brings, we are committed to our mission of providing outstanding dispute resolution services.
We conducted an employee engagement survey this year. I’m pleased and proud to report that despite the heavy workload and the significant degree of organizational change going on around them, our people are very highly engaged in the work of the CCTS, and they remain committed and focused on ensuring that our customers have a good experience when they come to us. Our staff are also focused on contributing to the broader objectives of the CCTS to improve the consumer experience in telecom and TV. Thank you to each and every one of you.