Sour service 08:55 on Monday
In the last couple of months I’ve had a few really bad customer experiences:
- Trying to find out about an unknown charge on my credit card (cleared)
- Trying to get my Nokia N90 updated (updated, but still not working well)
- Getting a proper insurance payment for my broken laptop (still on the way after two months)
As I’m not living in a barrel (really) I have of course had more experiences with customer service in the last months, not all of them bad. The point is, those experiences have been good enough and therefore I can’t even recall them. This is illustrated in my User Experience graph: only the experiences far from average are remembered. For the mass of people who are not actively interested in customer experiences, the grey neutral middle of “good enough” is even wider. Hence, getting to the “good” end is very, very hard. And for any competitive company, all the more important.
Was customer service always this bad? Or is the Internet / computers / “new economy” / some other fad to blame?
It’s not that the customer service reps I talked with would have been off-putting or unfriendly, most of them were emphatic with my problems. It’s just that they really could not service me, and realizing that they threw their hands up. The attitude seems to be “if it’s not on the computer, it doesn’t exist or cannot be done”. My mother was told by a travel agency a small city she was traveling to did not exist, only because they could not find it on their computers. How bad, and to be honest, remarkably stupid is that?
I would be most interested to hear anyone’s take on this who works as a customer service representative.