RealTime IT News

ISP Performance Study Launched

Looking to gauge the levels of customer service and support available in the Internet service provider market, communications firms ICG Netcom and Southwestern Bell Corp. are sponsoring a study of ISP users.

Entitled "The 1999 U.S. Study of ISPs' Performance in Customer Service and Support," the study will be run by consulting firm Pittiglio Rabin Todd & McGrath (PRTM). The purpose is to benchmark participating companies' customer support operations against competitors through 50 key performance and operating metrics relating to cost, time to resolve problems, and customer satisfaction levels.

The study will capture performance and operational metrics across three types of service: dial-up, dedicated, and hosting.

"The Internet industry is the fastest growing in history, and the only significant way for Internet service providers to differentiate themselves in this explosive environment is through customer service," said study lead and PRTM director Joe Lo.

"This rapidly-changing climate is driving the need for ISPs to know top-performing metrics in customer service. PRTMs study will be the first to present these metrics and best practices to the ISP sector."

Lo added that many ISPs know their overall customer satisfaction rating, but are unaware of their performance in specific operational categories such as abandonment rates, cost per incident, and employee productivity. By studying specific operations, companies can make necessary changes to improve customer retention, he said.

The company is currently holding an open enrollment period for participants. All study participants will be invited to discuss key issues that ISP customer service organizations are facing. Interested parties should contact Southard Jones at 650-967-2900 or sjones@prtm.com.