We answered 338,886 calls in the 12 months to 31 March 2019, with an average waiting time of 33 seconds. 92% of calls were answered in under 2 minutes. As we enter a new financial year, we wanted to take the opportunity to reflect upon our customer service performance over the last three months.
In the quarter to 31 March 2019, we answered 86,130 calls, with an average waiting time of 51 seconds.
88% of Trustpilot reviews rated us at 4-stars or 5-stars in the quarter, with 85% having rated us at 4-stars or 5-stars over the last 12 months. We have now received over 1,400 5-star reviews, boosting our overall Trust Score to 8.4. Our business also has three-times more 5-star reviews on Trustpilot than all other water retailers combined.
We have continued to invest in developing new systems, with a new release of our market-leading Trade Effluent invoicing system (TEIP) during March. This enables customers to receive reconciliation statements instead of revised invoices and credit notes. This happens where there have been late submissions of sampling and meter-reading data by Wholesalers to the central market systems.
With Thames Water no longer repairing customer side leaks, we have partnered with M+S, a leading provider of leak detection and repair services, to assist customers who may have or suspect that they have a leak. To date, M+S has assisted 78 of our customers. Read more about our water management services.
In March, we carried out a test, calling 9 retailers daily over a 2 week period. Our call waiting times were the lowest of any of the retailers. We also found that our customer service hours, 8am-6pm Monday-Friday, are up to 20% longer than some business water retailers.
Additionally, thousands of customers have now signed up to the our MyAccount portal, to manage their accounts online.
This commitment to quality has already seen us nominated for Retailer of the Year at this year’s Water Industry Awards.
We held our annual Customer Conference at Methodist Central Hall on 20 March 2019, which provided a detailed briefing on the new PR19 price controls, determining water tariffs from 2020-25.
John Reynolds OBE, CEO of Castle Water said, “We think it is vital that our customers understand the changes in charges and regulation which will affect them going forwards. The level of interest in water prices shown by business customers is very significant. We will continue to provide detailed and timely information to all our customers”.
Douglas McLaren, Chief Operating Officer, said “Our customers are benefiting from our ongoing investment in systems and training. Many customers have positively commented on the attitude and helpfulness of individual Castle Water staff. This is reflected in the increase in our Trustpilot score, which is now 8.4.” He added, “Our phone lines are busiest on a Monday, and between 10-11:30 and 2-3:30. If customers call outside these times, they can avoid a short wait. Our web-chat service continues to receive consistently excellent reviews, and is available via castlewater.co.uk”
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