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EE billing mistake costs them £1million

By Jess Heald on Mon 26 January 2015 in Topical

Last week it was revealed that EE, the largest mobile phone network in the UK, have overcharged customers and now owe approximately £1m in refunds to those affected.


Roughly 0.5% of the networks 28m customers, who used data in a non EU country between October 2012 and October 2014, have been affected and are due refunds which range from £2 to £80 per customer. According to David Nielberg, the error, identified by a customer complaint, was due to a “configuration error in our billing system, made following a system change”. He continued to say that “a small number of customers were wrongly charged VAT on the Data Roaming bundle outside of Europe”. After openly admitting this was “a mistake” he went on to announce EE “are now refunding these charges and contacting affected customers to apologise for the error”.

Although the issue appears to have been swiftly resolved, not only did it take a number of customer complaints for EE to notice the error, but there’s also a slight catch in the format of the refund. BBC News reported that EE would not be offering a cash refund, but would instead be giving customers credit on their accounts. For customers who are planning to stay with the network, this may not feel like too bad a deal. However any customers who are planning to leave or were charged a large amount may not be so happy with the result. EE have essentially agreed to refund the money, but only on the condition that those customers must use it again with them. Plus, customers receiving refunds were contacted via text message, which could be seen to be a little robotic and not particularly sincere from EE. Regardless, EE customers will be receiving full refunds in the form of a credit, but the likelihood is that they will be a lot more thorough when checking their bills from now on.

What does this mean for you?

Making mistakes is inevitable, but most mistakes, especially those that negatively impact your customers, can be avoided if you have the right tools in place.

Human error is especially prominent in mundane and time consuming admin tasks such as rekeying orders and data entry. However, these types of errors can easily be eliminated by integrating your core business and customer information into one central location. Not only does this reduce the need for manual tasks, but it leaves you safe in the knowledge that your customers are receiving the right quotes, orders and pricing, specific to them. Plus the rest of your team can refocus their time on revenue-generating activities.

ProspectSoft CRM and eCommerce offer unparalleled integration to Access Dimensions, Exchequer, Pegasus Opera and Sage 50 helping your business run more efficiently. Whether you want to make the right information available to the right people on the phone, in the office or online why not  speak to one of our consultants and find out how we can help?