The service experienced by comms sector customers is improving, but the industry still ranks as the lowest in the UK Customer Satisfaction Index published by The Institute of Customer Service.
The report gives the UK’s telecoms industry an overall customer satisfaction rating of 73.6 out of 100, one point higher than January 2016.
But telecoms has the highest proportion of customers experiencing a problem, 20%, compared to the UK average of 13%.
The most common problems are quality or reliability of goods and services, reported by 46% of customers.
Customers also said they had to expend more effort in dealing with organisations than they did a year ago.
Along with national public services, telecoms has the highest customer effort of all sectors.
Jo Causon, CEO of The Institute of Customer Service, said: "Generally speaking, it’s been a great year for customer service in the telecoms sector, with consumers telling us that businesses are improving overall experiences by getting things right first time and dealing with complaints faster and more efficiently.
"However, these factors do not necessarily translate into customer loyalty and recommendation. Just being 'good’ is no longer good enough, and organisations should think about how they can deliver outstanding service at all times."
"Added to that, better consistency is needed across different channels. Engagement through digital methods such as email, text, apps and webchat functions have all increased in the last year, and these are the channels through which it’s most difficult for customer service staff to show empathy.
"Organisations therefore need to make sure that their staff are highly engaged and highly skilled, as every customer interaction, regardless of the channel it’s on, counts towards business performance.\"