Jahresbericht 2014

Quality indicators

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Customer satisfaction

The EPO monitors customer satisfaction by running regular quantitative surveys with independent research institutes. Here below, the top results of these EPO surveys1.

Customer satisfaction with search and examination services1 2013 2014
% satisfied or very satisfied 76% 78%
Customer satisfaction with formalities services1 2011 2013
% satisfied or very satisfied 74% 80%
1. The EPO survey on formalities services is only implemented every two years.
    More background information on the EPO surveys on search and examination services and on formalities services.

Timeliness of patent grant procedure

Timeliness 2014 (in months)
Time to search with written opinion2 Direct European route - first filings 5,3
Direct European route - subsequent filings 5,9
Time to Grant From examination request 3 26,2
Duration of opposition procedure4 All oppositions 25,5
% of international searches on-time5 74,0%
% of accelerated searches on-time6 69,8%
% of accelerated examination actions on-time7 60,7%
  1. 2. Median value calculated from date of receipt at the EPO to dispatch of search report.
  2. 3. Median value calculated from formal check of the examination request to publication of mention of grant. The formal check confirms search phase completion, payment of examination fees and maintenance of the application.
  3. 4. Median value calculated from expiry of opposition filing period to date of opposition decision.
  4. 5. Percentage of PCT Chapter 1 international searches completed within 16 months after date of priority (for all files received on-time at the EPO).
  5. 6. Includes requests for accelerated search (3 month target) and automatically accelerated searches for European first filings (6 month target). These are part of the EPO's PACE programme for accelerated prosecution.
  6. 7. PACE programme requests for accelerated examination where examination action completed within 3 month target. Cases are excluded from calculation after applicant has requested time limit extension.

Timeliness of customer services

The EPO has set up a Customer Services helpdesk and Customer Relationship Management System to handle users' queries. More information on the EPO's Customer Service Charter.

Timeliness of response to telephone enquiries Calls to Customer services answered
within 20 seconds
Calls to EPO switchboards answered
within 20 seconds
Resolution of customer services enquiries General Information enquiries resolved
within 2 working days8 of receipt
Online Services enquiries resolved
within 2 working days8 of receipt
Procedural enquiries resolved
within 2 working days8 of receipt
8. Working days are calculated in elapsed working hours (2 days = 16hrs).

Complaints 9

Complaints9 registered 360
% breakdown by issue
  Examiner products and services 53%
  Formalities products and services 24%
  Other products and services 23%
% registered online 53%
% complaints replied to within 20 business days9 90%
9. More information on the EPO's complaints procedure.

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