Mobile Phone Providers for Businesses – 2014 Ratings

Posted by Canstar Blue July 29th 2014

You are viewing the archived 2014 ratings for mobile phone providers for businesses. Go to the current business phone provider ratings.

See Our Ratings Methodology.

Taking care of business: there’s an app for that now!

The cornerstone of many-a-successful business is working collaboratively with others to offer a great service to customers. To that end, Australian small business owners are utilising smartphone devices for their day to day operations, according to the results of our recent survey of small business owners.

We found that three quarters of survey respondents are becoming quite reliant on these devices – believing their smartphone is “vital” to their business’ operation. Generation Y respondents are especially likely to feel this way (92% agreed with the statement).

Is it possible these workers are a little too ‘switched on’, however? We saw that 90% of respondents are compromising their work/life balance by using their mobile phone outside of work hours to conduct business.

Australians have a sordid history when it comes to overworking. According to Business Insider back in 2011, “Only 47 per cent of (Australians) take all their allotted vacation days.” A second study conducted by Travelzoo in 2014 found that 55% didn’t use up their annual leave.

Optus customers most satisfied with mobile phone plans for businesses

Small Business Mobile Phone Plan Award Winner LogoRoughly a third of our survey respondents spend more than $70 a month on their mobile phone business plans. Twenty nine percent spend between $51 and $70, and 22% spend between $36 and $50. No matter who these small business owners are, they seem to be spending a substantial amount of money each year on their phone plan.

If you’re one of them, you should consider regularly reviewing your plan against other providers, to ensure you’re getting the best value possible for what you pay. Indeed, more than a quarter of our respondents told us their work mobile phone plan needs to be upgraded. Are you one of them?

In our comparison of four of the biggest phone carriers in the country, we found Optus customers were most satisfied with their choice in phone plan provider for their small business. Because of this, the ‘well-known telco’ has achieved our award for 2014.

Optus truly stood out in these results. They excelled first and foremost in the area of overall satisfaction, but also impressed with top ratings in a number of other areas, such as customer service, and range of available plans.

However, we’d be remiss to say that our other rated brands – Vodafone, Virgin, and Telstra – didn’t also shine. Take a look at the results breakdown below to see where each brand performed well.


Optus have kept things simple: on its website, there are business phone plans for a single person, ones for a small team (2-5 persons), some for medium-sized teams (6-150), and those for a large team (150+). From there, business owners have options to opt for just a sim, a sim and phone, or bundle in extras such as tablets and mobile broadband dongles.

Optus’ breadth, but also simplicity of service makes it easy to understand why this brand received five stars for overall satisfaction, customer service (i.e. pre-sale, point of sale, and post-sale service), accessibility of plan provider (e.g. through shopfront, on the phone, online chat), range of available plans, and clarity of advice.

This brand also achieved four stars for value for money, billing (e.g. information provided, ease of understanding, accuracy, etc.), and network coverage.


As one of this country’s most recognisable providers, it’s not surprising that Telstra offer a suite of mobile phone plans for businesses – big and small. These plans extend to BYOD (bring your own device) ‘casual’ plans, to a full suite of products bundled into one.

Telstra was the one brand in these results to receive five stars for its network coverage, as was also the case in our mobile phone plan ratings current mobile phone provider ratings. However, this brand also managed several four star ratings: for overall satisfaction, plan provider accessibility, and clarity of advice. Additionally, this brand secured three stars for value for money, customer service, billing, and its range of plans.


With plans ranging from $30 – $100 for consumers, it’s reasonably clear that Virgin endeavours to cater to everyone – big and small businesses alike. This is clearly reflected in our results. Virgin received five star ratings for its range of mobile plans, value for money, billing, and the clarity of advice they gave to customers. Additionally, this brand earned four stars for overall customer satisfaction, customer service, accessibility of provider, and network coverage.


Vodafone, like our other rated providers, delivers great phone packages specifically for businesses. Whether you’re on your own, part of a team, or need comprehensive data solutions for the entire company, a package is no doubt available to your business.

This brand achieved four star ratings for value for money, accessibility of plan provider, billing, and its range of available plans. They also received three stars for overall satisfaction, customer service, network coverage, and advice clarity.

How we rated mobile phone plans for businesses

Canstar Blue commissioned Colmar Brunton to survey 855 small business owners and decision makers (i.e. the main decision maker for a small business) across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction with products and services related to their business. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who currently have a mobile phone plan from an Australian mobile phone provider that is used for work purposes – in this case, 704 small business owners/employees.

Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey.

N.B. ABS defines a small business as one that operates with twenty staff or fewer at any given time.