The Lack Of Service In Customer Service

from the where-are-the-humans? dept

We're supposed to be a service based economy with so many people employed in service jobs. If that's the case, many are wondering, why is it so damn hard to get a human being on the phone when you call customer service? Everyone has stories about insanely long hold times, being cut off, touch-tone menus that don't make sense, being trapped in IVR-hell, and my personal favorite: simply being told to call back some other time when they aren't so busy. The thing is, technology should be used to make the customer experience better. Instead, it's mostly being used to make supporting customers less expensive. Companies need to realize that customer service is not a cost center - but it's how they build loyalty and repeat customers. This isn't an anti-technology rant. There are certainly customer service technologies that do make the customer experience better. However, most companies don't seem to think through that aspect of customer service, and are only looking for ways to cut costs.

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  1. identicon
    ::CORY::, 28 Sep 2003 @ 8:29am

    No Subject Given

    Speaking as someone who runs a Customer Service/Tech Call Center that hasnt outsourced to India, I must say that the customer is the one who keeps the customer from receiving prompt help.

    A huge percentage of calls are a waste of time that the customers should have either: 1) have known better, 2) could have figured out on their own with a tiny bit of effort, or 3) could have figured out on their own by visiting the support site.

    Not to mention the calls from customers who are trying to use the software or service for something it wasnt even intended for and assume that since it doesnt work that it's broken.

    From my perspective if you want to help with this epidemic of being on hold for help, make sure you've helped yourself as much as possible first. If everyone would do that, then the call centers of the world would be freed up with actual problems that would require a 3rd party person to assist.

    Running a call center is extremely expensive operation that people just assume should be built into the system nowadays. Imagine for a second if the automobile industry worked this way, you're car would NEVER get fixed if you called someone each time something happened and expected them to assist you in every step of the way to repair it.

    And also remember, I highly doubt a lot of 80 year old grandmother's read TechDirt, so the reader's opinions on this site are slightly skewed to the geek side and trust me, those 80 year old grandmother's are hogging up about 90% of the call center's time and effort.

    So the moral of the story is, close your web browser, pick up your phone, call your 80 year old grandmother and fix something broke on her computer. ;)

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