Customer Care Service Standards, Guidelines & Procedures

FOREWORD

Vodacom Lesotho is committed to you our subscribers and customers. This Code of Practice is intended to provide you with essential information in respect of the following: the services we offer; our core principles and commitments, charging and billing; enquiries; disputes; complaint procedures, and more.

 

Table of contents

            1.            SERVICES OFFERED BY VODACOM LESOTHO

 

            2.            THE ROLE OF VODACOM AND ITS DISTRIBUTION AGENTS TO THE CUSTOMER

2.1       VODACOM’S ROLE TO PREPAID CUSTOMERS

2.1.1    THE PREPAID CERTIFICATE

2.1.2    PREPAID SIM CARD REPLACEMENT PROCEDURE

2.1.3    STANDARDS OF CONDUCT EXPECTED IN THE PROVISION OF THE SERVICES BY THE DISTRIBUTOR TO THE VODACOM LESOTHO CUSTOMERS

 

3.         CHARGING AND BILLING

3.1       TARIFFS

3.2       THE CHARGING AND BILLING PROCEDURE

3.2.1    CHARGING

3.2.2    BILLING

3.3       PAYING YOUR BILL

3.4       RECONNECTION OF SERVICE

3.5        BILLING ENQUIRIES

 

            4.         CUSTOMER CARE SERVICES

 

5.         FAULT MANAGEMENT SERVICES

 

6.         QUALITY OF SERVICE INFORMATION RELATED TO VODACOM NETWORK SERVICES

6.1       WHAT TO DO WHEN THE VODACOM LESOTHO SERVICE IS UNAVAILABLE

 

7.         COVERAGE

 

8.         PRIVACY AND CONFIDENTIALITY

 

9.         ENQUIRIES, COMPLAINTS AND DISPUTE PROCEDURES

9.1       GENERAL

9.2       ENQUIRIES, QUERIES AND GRIEVANCES

9.3       COMPLAINTS

9.4       DISPUTES

10.       VODACOM PLATFORMS FOR GENERAL INFORMATION, QUERIES, ENQUIRIES, AND COMPLAINTS

 

1.     SERVICES OFFERED BY VODACOM LESOTHO

 

Vodacom Lesotho (“Vodacom”) operates a GSM mobile national and international voice and data network, as well as Mobile Financial Services (M-Pesa). Vodacom Lesotho therefore provides a wide range of communications services and products to its prepaid and post paid subscribers, through connectivity to its network using various technologies including WI-MAX, 3G, LTE, 5G, and leased lines for dedicated bandwidth to its corporate clients.

 

Should you require more information about our products, and services, or their proper use, please contact the Vodacom Customer Care. 

 

A variety of informative brochures are available from our Distributors and Vodacom retail stores. Additional information can also be sourced from the Vodacom website.

 

2.    THE ROLE OF VODACOM AND ITS DISTRIBUTION AGENTS TO THE CUSTOMER

 

Vodacom and its distributors sell and distribute airtime, starter packs, and terminal equipment (laptops, handsets, modems, routers, etc). Airtime is distributed in the form of physical vouchers, airtime transfer, electronic vouchers, and through Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) M-Pesa. Physical airtime vouchers are distributed in fixed amounts and every airtime voucher has a serial number and pin code. Vodacom vouches to protect its customers from unfair business practices, false or misleading marketing, anti-competitive behavior, and provides them with a copy of a service agreement or contract at the commencement of offering a service.

 

2.1. VODACOM’S ROLE AND RESPONSIBILTY TO CUSTOMERS

 

We strive to provide quality services to our customers and continually put in place procedures and measures to address all their queries, enquiries, and complaints.

 

The Vodacom Customer Care is the first point of contact for our customers. The Customer Care has a designated number (114) that is operational daily between 06:00 and 12 midnight. The Vodacom Customer care assists customers with all queries and complaints regarding Vodacom products and services. More information on customer care, is provided under section 10 below.

 

2.1.1.     THE PREPAID CERTIFICATE

Prepaid customers are encouraged to keep their prepaid certificate in a safe place in order to refer back to it should they need a PUK number, a SIM replacement, etc. The prepaid certificate serves as proof of ownership in the event of the prepaid SIM being lost, stolen, defective, or when any passwords or PINs have to be reset.   Neither Vodacom Lesotho nor its agents shall be liable for any loss or damage arising from the loss of the Prepaid Certificate.

 

2.1.2.     PREPAID SIM CARD REPLACEMENT PROCEDURE

Vodacom offers a SIM swap service to its customers. This service is available to a prepaid customer who needs to replace his/her SIM cards, and is offered at the Vodacom retail stores. Customers are required to bring their identity documentation for purposes of verifying their identity, and will further be asked questions intended to ascertain title to the SIM card. Upon satisfactory response to the security questions posed by Vodacom, the Customer will be promptly reconnected to the Vodacom network.

 

 

 

 

2.1.3.     STANDARDS OF CONDUCT EXPECTED IN THE PROVISION OF THE SERVICES BY VODACOM AGENTS AND DISTRIBUTORS TO VODACOM LESOTHO CUSTOMERS

 

Our agents and/ distributors shall at all times:

 

·         Provide efficient and effective service to all subscribers and customers.

 

·         Employ such competent staff as will properly provide for the needs of contract subscribers, potential subscribers and prepaid customers.

 

·         Provide subscribers and potential subscribers with:

 -         Proper instruction in the operation and maintenance of any subscriber equipment and in the operation of value-added services;

-          Reasonable and adequate customer care, and efficient and competent installation of equipment, and after sales service. (It must be noted however that maintenance of handsets will only be effected on equipment purchased through Vodacom Lesotho channels).

 

·         Comply with all requirements of the Vodacom Lesotho’s Operating license;

 

·         Comply with any instructions given by Vodacom in relation to the method of allocating subscriber numbers or SIM cards to subscribers.

 

·         Make freely available to the public the standard prices, terms and conditions upon which they provide Vodacom services to subscribers and potential customers.

 

·         Maintain a suitable quality management system, which meets the requirements of Vodacom in order to demonstrate proper control of the provision of services to subscribers.

 

·         Resolve complaints in respect of the services by way of procedures established or prescribed in terms of the license or as agreed with Vodacom Lesotho.

 

·         Use all reasonable endeavors to ensure that information obtained or received in the provision of Vodacom Lesotho service is kept confidential, not disclosed or made accessible to third parties or used otherwise than for the purpose of the furtherance of the Vodacom Lesotho service, unless such information is freely available to the public or is required by law or in terms of the license.

 

·         To the extent required by the license, not show any undue preference to, or exercise undue discrimination against a person or class or description of persons in respect of provision of any Vodacom Lesotho service.

 

·         Comply with the code of practice for customer affairs as prescribed by Vodacom from time to time.

 

3.    CHARGING AND BILLING

 

3.1. TARIFFS

 

Vodacom tariffs and terms and conditions of service are regulated by the Lesotho Communications Authority (the Authority). Vodacom publishes prevailing tariffs on a number of mediums such as brochures, digital platforms, and on the website. These brochures are available at our retail stores and outlets. Vodacom also notifies customers of changes in tariffs through SMS notifications and other channels before these are implemented, to allow customers to be aware of the changes likely to impact them so that they are able to make informed choices.

 

The Vodacom digital platforms, including our website, where you can obtain more information on our product offerings and applicable tariffs are outlined under item 10.

 

 

3.2. THE CHARGING AND BILLING PROCEDURE

 

3.2.1.      CHARGING

 

We promise that we will only charge our subscribers for the services for which they have agreed to purchase or subscribed to.

 

However, please note that Vodacom is entitled to charge an initial connection charge, a monthly access charge, a charge per call/data download, as well as for additional services as approved by the LCA. Vodacom may also, in certain circumstances, require the payment of a deposit before a customer gets connected to the network. This deposit is a contractual fee between the customer and Vodacom and is intended to mitigate risk. It therefore does not form part of the charge related to the provision of the communication service and is thus not regulated. For an updated summary of charges and tariffs, please call Vodacom Customer Care or visit the Vodacom website.

 

It should be noted that customers may connect with a service provider of their choice for use of toll free services and Premium Rate Services. Customers should maintain valid authorization/certification issued by the Authority during the subsistence of their contractual agreement. Failure to do so shall be a ground for termination of such services with Vodacom. It should be noted that a number that is toll-free on one network may be charged for on the other. It is therefore imperative that the Customer engages both providers to ensure that due process is followed to zero rate such calls in line with the existing interconnection agreement between the service providers and that due payments to the service provider are made to avoid service interruptions. Please contact Vodacom Lesotho customer care for details of toll-free services on the Vodacom Lesotho network.

 

3.2.2.      BILLING

 

3.2.2.1. Prepaid:

Prepaid users should note that should the time window for purchased airtime voucher expire Vodacom is not expected to reinstate or refund any lost credit. The onus is on the subscriber to monitor the time window period. The customer can call customer care line (114) to check the time window expiry. Prepaid plans and rates are displayed on the Vodacom website.

 

3.2.2.2. Contract:

Vodacom Lesotho will be able to advice you specifically on the charges for your use of its network in line with the product subscribed for. Nevertheless, you will generally be billed monthly for access/subscription charges, call charges and operator service charges. Charges for subscriber equipment, additional apparatus and additional services may also be incorporated on the same bill, but will be identified separately.As part of the service provided to you, Vodacom shall, on a monthly basis, provide customers with a personalised account with itemised call charges/data usage charges to their designated physical or email address which will usually include the following detail for each call, made (for call charges):

 

-          The date and time of the call

-          The number called

-          Duration of the call

-          The total charge for that call

-          Total monthly bill

 

3.2.2.3. Data usage

-The date and time of the connection

-The duration and Volume of the connection

-Total charge of each connection

-Total monthly bill

 

Please note that a printed personalised account cannot be made available to prepaid customers. This is due to the anonymity of the prepaid service. Prepaid customers may check their balance at any time free of charge by dialing 151 for a voice recording or *100# for a display of their balance on their cellphone’s screen. Furthermore, many handsets will provide electronic records of the past ten calls made with the unit. However, should you have an account enquiry, please call the customer care line (114) to get assistance telephonically by providing more detailed account information.

 

3.2.2.4. Network Access

Network access customers shall be invoiced on a monthly basis depending on the type of contract that they have with Vodacom Lesotho. Customers must make sure that their invoices are well in accordance with their contract. This will usually be the monthly subscription service that the customer has contracted with Vodacom.

 

3.2.2.5. Voice and data bundles

 

Vodacom offers a range of voice and data bundles. There are hourly, daily, weekly and monthly bundles available to customers. The validity of the bundles depends on the type of bundle purchased. Bundles are accessed through USSD, M-Pesa, and My Vodacom App.

 

Vodacom has implemented a mechanism that allows customers to consent to out of bundle (OOB) data charging and will not automatically charge customers upon expiry or depletion of their data bundle(s).  Under the mechanism, customers have the option to opt in and out at any time to allow or to block OOB charging.  We have also implemented smart notifications which allow customers to monitor and have control of their data usage.

 

3.3. PAYING YOUR BILL

 

Vodacom undertakes to provide customers with timely, accurate, and clear bills. Bills should be paid to Vodacom on or before the date specified on your bill or in your contract with Vodacom Lesotho.  In the event that you dispute your bill when it is presented to you, you should contact your nearest Vodacom office, complete the complaint form for your query to be resolved by Vodacom.  In the event that you are not able to pay your bill in full, please contact the Vodacom credit control office timeously for assistance on how you can settle your bill or negotiate a payment plan. This will be done in agreement with Vodacom and will prevent disconnection of your service, as well as further legal action being taken against you to recover the outstanding payment. Steps taken in this regard are entirely at the discretion of Vodacom. However, Vodacom will notify you before suspension and/or termination of your service. We will also not switch you to another service or migrate you without your consent.

 

3.4. RECONNECTION OF SERVICE

 

If you have been disconnected due to your default on payment of your bill, a reasonable fee may be charged to disconnect and/or reconnect you after payment of money in arrears. These fees are to cover the administration related to the disconnection and/or reconnection, subject to the contract between you and Vodacom Lesotho. Vodacom has the right to refuse to reconnect you to the service in the case where the disconnection occurred on the grounds of your default to pay your bill. It may also require that you pay a security deposit prior to reconnection, which deposit relates directly to risk management. Subject to the above please note that Vodacom may not charge a disconnection and/or reconnection fee if you have given due notice of cancellation upon expiry of the initial contract period and/or any subsequent extensions thereof.

 

If you are of the opinion that you have been wrongfully disconnected or charged for disconnection and/or reconnection you should complete a Customer Complaint Form explaining the circumstances to Vodacom. If found to be the case, Vodacom will arrange to adjust your next bill. Please note that the disconnection and reconnection fees are contractual fees levied by Vodacom Lesotho in terms of your contract and are therefore not regulated and not subject to approved tariffs.

 

 If you are disconnected from the network for reasons not attributed to your fault, Vodacom shall resolve your disconnection complaint within two (2) working days.

 

3.5.  BILLING ENQUIRIES

 

Queries in respect of calls connected by Vodacom will be checked from our record of faults and the toll ticketing system which recorded your call. If fault affecting the charge for the call is found, your bill will be adjusted accordingly. Vodacom endeavors to ensure that the billing information supplied is complete and accurate.

 

All enquiries with regards to a bill or an account should be directed to Vodacom Lesotho’s credit control department at the following email address;

CreditCtrl@vodacom.co.ls

 

Please note that should you request a personalised account with itemised call charges, for enquiry purposes, Vodacom Lesotho may charge you an additional charge up to the approved tariffs. Furthermore, as indicated above, a personalised account is not available to prepaid customers, but they may dial 114 for account information.

 

4.    CUSTOMER CARE SERVICES

 

Vodacom Customer Care Services are available from 06:00am to 12:00 midnight daily, including on weekends and public holidays. A variety of services are provided therein and they include customer care and prepaid assistance (dial 114); Roaming self-service activation (dial 1182). Calls to 114 and 1182 are free of charge.

 

If you are unable to make a call successfully, the Vodacom operator will, where possible, assist you to obtain the service you require.

 

 

5.    FAULT MANAGEMENT SERVICES

 

5.1. Handset users

 

Faults on the Vodacom network relating to voice services should be reported to Vodacom customer care. Such faults are likely to be in one area and service will probably be restored if you move to an area covered by another radio base station. Should the customer care operator not be able to assist you they will log a fault electronically. The internal fault management procedure stipulates that you will be contacted no later than 24 hours after reporting a fault. This will be via your cell phone or alternatively via a text message, or e-mail provided.

 

Before reporting a fault, try to make a call using another cellular phone connected to the Vodacom network. If you are successful, it is likely that your subscriber equipment or associated apparatus is faulty. Under its license, Vodacom is only responsible for maintaining the Vodacom network. Phone unit faults should be reported to your fault repair service or to whoever supplied you with a phone, or to the manufacturer. Please read your contract to determine whether a guarantee or a separate maintenance contract covers the equipment. If not, you will be required to pay for the work done in correcting the fault.

 

 

5.2. Network Access

 

Vodacom remains responsible for maintenance of the portion of the service which is under its direct control and within its domain.  Vodacom will therefore not be liable for faults found to be the responsibility of other links, even though assistance with fault clearance will always be available. Where the customer detects a fault, they must contact Vodacom Customer Care to report same. The reporting customer must give full details of their link. 

 

6.    QUALITY OF SERVICE RELATED TO VODACOM NETWORK SERVICES

 

Vodacom strives to meet the quality of service standards set by the Lesotho Communications Authority from time to time in relation to the licensed services.  Vodacom further guarantees that our services are provided at or exceed the set Quality of Service targets. We also ensure that our customers are provided with sufficient information regarding the quality of service in order for them to make informed decisions.

 

 

6.1. WHAT TO DO WHEN THE VODACOM LESOTHO SERVICE IS UNAVAILABLE

 

Vodacom Customer Care has information on all service affecting problems on the network which are detected by the Network Management.

 

In the event of unavailability of the Vodacom service in your area, please contact Vodacom Customer Care to inform Vodacom of the problem and to get more information on the said service unavailability. We will promptly respond to such notification.

 

6.1.1.     Handset / Modem users

The Vodacom network uses up-to-date equipment and, provided you are making a call or accessing any internet service in an area where service is available, you should not experience any difficulties or poor service.

 

However, if you experience difficulties, hang up, check that you are receiving signal on your cellular phone, and then redial. If you still experience difficulties, call the Vodacom Customer Care Centre. If you are using any other equipment to which your modem is connected, please contact the nearest Vodacom retail store for assistance with trouble shooting to identify the source of the problem. You will thereafter be contacted within a period of five (5) working days on the details provided by you on the said form for due advice / and or resolution of the fault. Vodacom will nonetheless strive to provide feedback as soon as practicably possible.

 

6.1.2.     Network Access users

            Service Level Agreements (SLA’s) are signed with all network service users, which agreements define the points of contact for resolution of faults relating to access to the Vodacom Lesotho network. Users of these services are therefore required to contact the specified contacts at the Vodacom offices to log their requests for resolution of faults.

             Vodacom nonetheless shall ensure that SLA’s entered into with customers stipulate targets that are the same or better that those in the Rules.

 

7.    COVERAGE

 

The areas where Vodacom provides coverage are indicated on the Vodacom coverage maps. These maps are available on our website.

 

8.    PRIVACY PROTECTION

 

Vodacom is committed to protecting the privacy of our customers and has put in place measures to ensure that all confidential information and communication is protected. We process your information to provide you with the services you have asked for, and for development and improvement of the said services. Thus, your information will only be shared with your consent, and/or only within the legal parameters in terms of the applicable law allowing for disclosure, e.g., through a court order or to comply with a regulatory request from the LCA.

 

9.    ENQUIRIES, COMPLAINTS AND DISPUTE PROCEDURES

 

9.1. GENERAL

Vodacom is committed to delivering quality service to customers. In this regard, queries, enquiries, and complaints are attended to in a professional manner, and within a specified period.

 

9.2. ENQUIRIES, QUERIES AND GRIEVANCES

 

Vodacom wants to know when you are dissatisfied with the service you receive, in order for us to try to address, resolve and rectify same. Therefore, where you have a grievance, query or a complaint on any aspect of Vodacom products, services or network, you should first contact Vodacom either by phoning the Vodacom Call Centre or going to one of our retail stores. Furthermore, a Vodacom Consultant at our retail stores will provide a copy of Vodacom’s complaints procedures to any customer who requests a copy; in addition, there will be a copy on the Vodacom website. Should you not be satisfied with the response received, please follow the escalation process as set out below.

 

 

9.3. COMPLAINTS TO BE LODGED AS PER THE CUSTOMER COMPLAINT FORM

 

9.3.1.     Lodging a Complaint

 

·       In the event that you are not satisfied with the manner and/or attention that was given to your problem or query, visit your nearest Vodacom office and request a customer complaint form to fill for lodging a formal complaint with Vodacom.

 

·       This form will also be available to you for any complaint that you may wish to lodge with Vodacom. The Customer Care consultant or person who gives you the form will readily and courteously attempt to resolve your complaint.

 

·       Upon receiving a complaint, the Customer Care consultant will register the complaint and allocate it a reference number that will enable you as the complainant to refer to it in any further contact with Vodacom.

 

·       When lodging a complaint, you should provide the Customer Care consultant with your name and account number, your contact details and nature of your complaint.  Please be advised that there will be instances, due to the nature and complexity of the problem or complaint, where such person will need time to investigate the matter. They will however get back to you as soon as possible, but in any event within five (5) working days.

 

·       Should you still be dissatisfied with the outcome of the above process and have exhausted all other options, you may request to further escalate your complaint. As the complainant, you should also keep a proper record of a copy of all correspondence with Vodacom, the date and time that the complaint was communicated to Vodacom, and the name of the customer care consultant who attended your complaint, as well as the action promised to address the situation.

 

 

9.3.2.     Time Frame for resolution of complaints.

Vodacom and its Distribution agents endeavor to respond to complaints promptly and give feedback to customers within five (5) working days, and we will attempt to resolve your problem not later than twenty (20) working days from receipt of your complaint. Vodacom however, depending on the nature of your complaint, Vodacom aims to resolve your complaint as soon as practically possible to give you a better customer experience as our valued customer

 

9.4. ESCALATION

 

         In the event that you are not satisfied with our response given regarding your complaint, how it was handled, and/or the time it took to resolve it, please note that you can escalate your complaint as follows;

 

1.    Request to speak to the Store Supervisor / Account Manager for Enterprise clients

2.    Request to speak to the Retail Manager / Sales manager for Enterprise clients 

3.    Request to speak to the Executive Head of Division - Commercial Operations/ Enterprise Business Unit

4.    Request to speak to the Managing Director

 

       Each of the above contact persons shall respond within one (1) day of escalation and their contact numbers shall be provided to you by the Consultant.

 

9.5. DISPUTES

 

In the event that you are still not satisfied after exhausting all possible avenues to resolve your problem by giving Vodacom Lesotho the opportunity to resolve your complaint, you may either lodge your complaint with the Lesotho Communications Authority (the LCA) or institute legal proceedings against Vodacom in terms of your legal contract with Vodacom. The LCA telephone number and addresses are as follows;

 

 

       The LCA office contact details are follows;

 

30 Princess Margaret Road,

       Maseru Lesotho

      

       Telephone number – 52221300

 

            www.lca.org.ls

 

Click Here To Download The Form

 

 

10.  VODACOM PLATFORMS FOR GENERAL INFORMATION, QUIRIES, ENQUIRIES AND COMPLAINTS 

 

10.1.      VODACOM WEBSITE

            www.vodacom.co.ls

 

10.2.      VODACOM CUSTOMER CARE LINE

            Cell: 114 (toll free)

                                                                            

10.3.      VODACOM ENTERPRISE LINE

            Cell 155(toll free)

 

10.4.      DIGITAL PLATFORMS

 

Ø   WhatsApp line – 58114114, Accessible 24/7

Ø   Facebook page – Vodacom Lesotho, Accessible 24/7

Ø   Instagram- @ Vodacom Lesotho, Accessible 24/7

 

10.5.      CONTACT DETAILS

            VODACOM LESOTHO HEAD OFFICE

            VODACOM PARK

            MABILE ROAD

            MASERU LESOTHO

 

            Box 7387

            Maseru 100

            Lesotho