Iain Graham writes:
I recently had to, as a last resort, call the customer service department of a large communications company about a problem I currently have with a piece of equipment. I know I could have looked in the 150-page accompanying instruction manual, but I haven't got half my life to spare! (as I mentioned in my previous blog piece on handsets!)
Businesses these days are telling us "Customer service has been outsourced to the Indian subcontinent and technologically streamlined in order to offer our customers a better, more efficient service"! I believe that's what they call spin, I call it a downright lie!! (Same thing really!) A whopper on the same scale as "We're going to put big hob-nailed boots on and come round and stamp on your head for your comfort and pleasure"! Why not tell the truth; "It is a cost saving for us as the people there work for next to nothing" or "we have to get the right people to answer the calls because they've only got the scripts to deal with three problems at any one time!"
Then you have to deal with a raft of pointless questions and identity checks, press a sequence of numbers - halfway through which you forget the problem and lose the will to live - just to enable you to speak to someone who quite clearly has no interest in your problem but is focused on answering 30 calls every 15 minutes all day long to obtain his bonus at the end of the week!
At least, that's what happens if you are lucky! You may not get through at first and be put on hold, forced to listen to 'hold musak' that's supposed to keep you calm but in fact raises your blood pressure with every note! You are actually eternally grateful when the mechanical bint comes back to remind you that "Your call is important to us..."
A company's customer service department insists they are all about "providing a world-class service to our customers" until they are blue in the face, but I'll tell you what the best service to your customers is, shall I? When a customer calls their local branch or shop, someone picks up up the ringing phone and answers their questions. If they don't know how to answer the enquiry, they walk across the office to find someone who can!
There! Unless you are selling fireworks, it's not rocket science, is it?!