What the customers say
In 2008, the Mediation officer carried out his first quality survey on people who had complained to him about a dispute with RATP.
Encouraged by its success, he launched a new survey in 2009 which is now going to be conducted on an annual basis. An account of the results of this survey is included in the 2009 annual report (in French).
A questionnaire is posted to each respondent which they return free of charge.
In 2009, 47% of people took part, which was slightly less than in 2008 (51 %). The questionnaire contains 12 questions whose answers are grouped into the following themes.
Knowledge of the Mediation officer
The respondents know about the Mediation officer from information provided by RATP (staff members, ratp.fr website), then by consumer groups or via Internet searches.
How regulation works
Respondents like the current procedure: they make a complaint to customer services and if they are not satisfied with their response they take their case to the Mediation officer. The vast majority consider that “making a complaint to the Mediation officer should be an exception“. They also think that the standard 45-day response time is acceptable, although few actually had to wait that long, with the average waiting time in 2009 less than 20 days.
The Mediation officer's responses
The respondents feel that the arguments of their case are important and the vast majority believe that the Mediation officer takes them into account. Even the respondents whose cases were unsuccessful felt the Mediation officer had listened to them: "You didn't give me the outcome I wanted but I can't dispute your arguments".
The Mediation officer's independence
Five respondents out of ten look upon the Mediation officer as independent. The opinions they give on this are generally quite clear-cut: "We knew the outcome in advance. Despite the receipt and proof of payment provided, I had to pay a fixed fine of €25", "The Mediation officer responded positively to my request (...) it's great that there's someone independent to RATP who can respond to requests impartially".
Awareness of the Mediation officer
When respondents are asked whether they would recommend others to seek help from the Mediation officer, eight out of ten answer yes. This proves the merits of the role and demonstrates their belief that it is a useful tool even though, as we have seen, they believe there are certain aspects of it that could be improved.