We all know the struggle of trying to pick out a new phone company to use. It can be tough to find something that is both cheap and effective enough for us to use and trust, especially because there are so few major phone companies in Canada.
The two largest companies in Canada are Rogers and Bell. Between them, they serve over 20 million Canadians in one way or another, from data plans to Wi-Fi and cable.
According to new data from the two telecommunications giants, one of the carriers is getting complained about much less frequently than the other.
The data is part of an investigation into the sales tactics used by phone companies and whether or not new rules need to be put into place to protect Canadians from misleading sales practices that the companies may be using.
Bell revealed that, from July 1st of 2017 to July 16th of this year, the company received a total of 24,041 customer complaints that were in some way related to the sales practices used by the company.
Rogers, however, received much less hate from its customers according to its data.
Rogers says that, in the past year, it has received a grand total of 2,200 complaints that were sales-related.
That’s 22,041 less than Bell did in a year, despite having around the same number of customers.
So, why does Rogers receive drastically fewer complaints, you ask?
Part of the reason may be that Rogers has a zero tolerance policy when it come to unauthorized sales practices in Canada.
The company wants to have a good relationship with its customers. Rogers claims that their goal is to build a long-term relationship with customers so they’ll have reason to stay with the company for as long as possible.
Rogers even apparently goes as far as having "mystery shoppers,"- people the company pays to pretend to be regular people who want to sign up with the company. These "mystery shoppers" can then evaluate their experience, and determine if there any unethical sales practices being used by Rogers staff.
Bell has taken steps such as paying employees mainly with an hourly wage instead of through commission, as a way of discouraging employees from saying things that are wrong simply to make a sale.
Rogers also says it takes commission money back from employees have used a dishonest sales practice in order to get someone to purchase a product or a service.
However, many Canadians disagree that everything about how these companies sell their products and services to their customers is completely legitimate.
In a Reddit post, many people say that these companies are using unsavoury tactics all the time to increase their sales.
“Bell and Rogers represent exactly the kind of corporations that are destroying our democracy,” writes one person.
“Didn't know physically blocking customers from leaving your store without purchasing a plan is considered customer first,” says another, who clearly had a very bad sales experience one day.
Lots of people are unhappy with the fact that Canada does not have enough competition among telecommunications companies, something many see as a reason why Canadians are paying such high rates for their phone bills each month.
“In the best interest of Canadians and Canadian infrastructure, I believe it is time we open telecommunications to foreign companies,” wrote one person clearly fed up with the lack of choice in Canada.
The CRTC will be holding hearings next month as part of the investigation into sales practices in the telecommunications industry.
New laws around what is and is not allowed in the industry may be coming if the CRTC finds that there are bad sales tactics throughout the industry.