A year after Charter Communications opened the doors to a regional
call center -- resulting in a flood of complaints about customer
service -- officials say the cable company is consistently meeting
industry standards for call- response times.
The call center has more than doubled the number of custo-
mer-service representatives, to 600 employees, and is answering 90%
of calls in 30 seconds or less, Charter spokeswoman Sandra Magana
said. Charter Communications serves about 49,000 customers in
Glendale, Burbank and La Canada Flintridge.
The problem came after Charter Communications decided to
consolidate six local call centers -- including one in Burbank that
also served Glendale and La Canada Flintridge -- into one regional
site in Irwindale, Magana said. The Burbank office was flooded Dec.
1, 2001, forcing a premature move.
"The challenge came when we moved Burbank employees into
Irwindale," Magana said. "We had to move them in advance."
Statistics about call-response times before the move were not
available because paperwork was destroyed in the flood, Magana said.
But Burbank officials have said the company had not been responding
to calls in 30 seconds 63% of the time in October and 56% during
After the Burbank site closed, city officials in Burbank and
Glendale -- both franchise cities -- were deluged with complaints
about the length of time it was taking to get a customer-service
representative on the phone.
"During the transition, it was awful, but it's way better than it
was," said Bob Kramer, Burbank's community assistance coordinator.
"Right now, we're down to about two or three [complaints] a day, if
Earlier this year, Burbank officials were receiving about 20
complaints a day, he added.
Glendale officials too were inundated with complaints. In January,
the city was getting about 50 calls a day about being put on hold for
long periods of time or not answering the phone quickly enough.
"They were putting people on hold for like a half-hour," Glendale
Public Information Officer Ritch Wells said. "It has changed
The city has received just two complaints in the past six months
about the time it took to speak to a customer-service representative,