Sytel engages with Ofcom

January, 2017

Sytel asks Ofcom to reconsider

In December 2016 Ofcom issued an update on their rules for outbound dialling entitled Persistent Misuse. Ofcom's regulations lead the way globally in seeking to both curb and prevent the nuisance calls caused by outbound dialling. Sytel has been a firm supporter of their work and has contributed regularly to discussions about proposed new policies.

The latest Policy Statement contains new insights and determinations on the part of Ofcom, for example the clear intention to eliminate all Silent Calls.

Much of the new Policy Statement puts the onus on call centres to avoid misuse, which of course all responsible contact centres seek to do.  In several respects, Ofcom stops short of setting precise guidelines.  Instead, it is saying that it is the responsibility of the contact centre to ensure that misuse does not occur. This is true, for example, of policies in respect of both abandoned and IVM calls made by diallers.

Deciding how to program dialling systems so as to avoid misuse is a challenge for all contact centres.  In the absence of any precise rules, which can be monitored, we believe that the chances for misuse indeed being persistent, or much more than Ofcom would regard as reasonable, are high.

We have decided to write to Ofcom's Chief Executive asking Ofcom to reconsider its policy stance and consider setting more precise rules for contact centres to follow.  Since our letter is written along the lines of a submission, providing advice and feedback, we are placing it in the public domain so that others may comment and interact with Ofcom as they wish.

A copy of our letter to Ofcom may be requested by submitting your details in the form on the right.