Whether your mobile never has enough signal, your internet connection is slow, you're not getting all the TV channels you should, or you've been over-charged on your home phone bill, you'll need to contact your supplier to get things sorted.

While most companies are keen to keep customers happy, sometimes they don't listen or are unable to sort things out in a satisfactory way.

That's when you might need to take your case further: first with an official complaint, then to an ombudsman if all else fails.

How you do this is the same whether you're dealing with your broadband, landline, mobile phones or digital TV, as all of these services are regulated by Ofcom.

Here's what you need to do:

Speak to your provider

Contact the company's customer service department to explain your problem, as they may be able to sort it out for you straight away.

If not, make a formal complaint to the company. Consider doing this in writing, although you can do it by phone or email

If it's still not resolved, ask for a deadlock letter; this is confirmation from your provider that they've been unable to resolve your complaint themselves, or that they don't feel there's any more they need to do.

Escalate your complaint

Once you have a deadlock letter (or if 8 weeks have passed since you formally complained), you can then go to an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) scheme. This is essentially a middleman who can step in to help resolve your complaint.

There are two ADR schemes for the communications industry. Both are independent and approved by Ofcom:

Your provider has to be a member of one of the two schemes. To find out which, ask your provider or refer to the ADR schemes' websites.

When you escalate your case to an ADR, make sure you give them all the information you can, including copies of correspondence.

Once they've collected all the information they need, they'll pass your case to an independent adjudicator, who will usually make their final decision within 6 weeks.

If you accept the ADR's decision within 6 weeks, your provider will have to carry out the actions specified.