Customer Service That Doesn’t Know Squat

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Huntn, Mar 20, 2018.

  1. Huntn, Mar 20, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2018

    Huntn macrumors P6

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #1
    Have you gotten tired on no-nothing Customer Service, when you ask them what should be a easy answer for a simple question, they put you on hold for 10minutes, and then give you bad info? I know the why, it must be saving $, we’ll staff our Custiomer Help with people who don’t know anything and pay them minimum wage. :oops:I can almost guarantee with any question, you are going to be put in hold while the person researches for an answer or asks a supervisor. They don’t know themselves.

    This all happened today:
    Example 1: New to Medicare, I’m told by the Dr. office front desk staff, that it’s been less than a year since my last physical and that Medicare won’t cover it. I have to remind them I just gave them my new Medicare info so there is no previous history. Doh! :oops:

    Example 2: The Dr. front desk people tell me that I can’t get a annual physical and have the doctor fill my maintenance prescriptions in the same visit, or the claim will be ejected. This must be a common situation, yet they don’t know they need to use a code for an office visit, versus a preventative wellness check to get test like cholesterol and triglycerides tests covered. The doctor knew.

    Example 3: I call the company that handles the customer service for the supplemental insurance that augments my Medicare to ask about Example 2. Again, I get put on hold for 10 minutes while they “research” it. :oops:

    Example 4: I purchase a Dewalt Rotary Hammer, but don’t see how to adjust the chuck so a flat blade can be used in hammer mode and be oriented in a horizontal position. I call Dewalt customer service and ask. The first person puts me on hold for 10 minutes, then transfers me to another person. The next person puts me on hold for 5 minutes, and then tells me I can’t adjust the bit in the chuck.

    I say “thanks” and consider returning it, but on a second run through the manual, I find where, putting the hammer in hammer-drill mode, the bit can be turned until it is horizontal, and then put into hammer mode where it will maintain it’s position. For ignorant customer service it was easier to tell me “no”. :oops:
     
  2. Zenithal macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2009
    #2
    It happens. Our ISP used to have terrible support. It's gotten better under new leadership over the years. They still have their problems when you compare support tiers. Traditional utilities have some of the worst customer support, in that they often employ digital agents versus real people. Thankfully, if you Google the issues out, there's codes you can dial in-call to direct you to an agent.
     
  3. A.Goldberg macrumors 68020

    A.Goldberg

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2015
    Location:
    Boston
    #3
    At least you’re getting answers within minutes. I’m dealing with a situation where I was overcharged and I was told by phone customer service that I need to email customer service to resolve the problem. That was last Thursday...

    I’ve had situations at work where I have to talk to insurance companies. Even as a healthcare provider it can take copious amount since of time waiting on hold, getting transferred around in circles, and then having to re-explain everything again.
     
  4. smallcoffee macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    North America
    #4
    Did you use a credit card to make the payment? If so, call customer service, tell them of whoever over charged you and say “I was overcharged and would like this taken care of by the end of the day, if that’s not possible I’m going to go ahead and call my credit card company and dispute the transaction until this is resolved” and I bet they will fix it for you right then and there. If they don’t, call your CC company and dispute the transaction and they will resolve it in no time.

    Always pay with a CC (especially if it’s a high end card like CSR) and never tolerate a bill discrepancy from a company you purchased a product from.
     
  5. Huntn, Mar 21, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2018

    Huntn thread starter macrumors P6

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #5
    That’s sad they don’t have time to resolve it on the phone.

    I’m not saying there are times where some research is warranted, but when basic questions with simple answers require research, you can determine the expertise of who you are working with especially when they end up giving you the wrong answer. :oops:
     
  6. eyoungren macrumors Core

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    ten-zero-eleven-zero-zero by zero-two
    #6
    Customer service is designed to make customer problems go away so the company does not have to utilize resources or time in actually fixing your problem.

    The definition of 'making the problem go away' is vastly different between you and the business.

    You solved your own problem with the power tool and Dewalt didn't really have to spend any money on you. Problem solved.

    That's the intention of customer service today.
     
  7. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #7
    I have long marvelled at how companies will think nothing of pouring vast sums into advertising campaigns to attract new customers, but will treat existing customers with complacent contempt.

    They do not seem to realise - or care - that dissatisfied customers do tell others of their experiences, and I, for one, will always trust word-of-mouth experience over any advertising campaign.
     
  8. smallcoffee macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    North America
    #8
    You know what’s even more concerning? When it’s the government and you don’t have an option (OP mentioned Medicaid). You can’t switch or do anything about it. Scary.
     
  9. eyoungren macrumors Core

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    ten-zero-eleven-zero-zero by zero-two
    #9
    Because attracting customers is the more difficult thing.

    Business is well aware of inertia. If you are truly invested in a company because of the product or service they offer, how likely are you to tolerate how they treat you?

    If Apple had poor customer service, but the ecosystem remained strong and feature rich - just how many people would leave Apple?

    Not too many I imagine, as people already find it rough to leave Apple's ecosystem.

    Then add money on top of it. It can take a bit of that to move your business.

    So, business can afford to screw over their current customers.
     
  10. Scepticalscribe, Mar 21, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2018

    Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #10
    Actually, I think retaining customers is the more difficult thing. Inertia might keep customers but contempt won't.

    In any case, one of the main reasons I switched to Apple was decent customer service.

    This is something that matters to me, and I value it, and poor customer service will give rise to a reaction from me.

    Moreover, I have left companies because of atrocious customer service - brand loyalty matters less than good service.

    Re Apple, I have already made arrangements for the post iPod future and it does not involve Apple.
     
  11. eyoungren macrumors Core

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    ten-zero-eleven-zero-zero by zero-two
    #11
    Honestly then, I think you are a rarety. Or perhaps things work differently in the UK.

    I can see your viewpoint if we are speaking of a product or service that does not cost a lot of money, or where it pays to shop around.

    There are other limitations as well, such as limited competition. In my area I have two choices of internet provider, three for television. Luckily for me, the provider I choose has good customer service. But even if it's competitor had very good service (it does NOT) I would not do business with it because the product it sells (internet access) is very unreliable.

    Or perhaps it may just be me that's rare. I tend to stick with a product if it's good and short-circuit customer service by going over people's heads. It pays to know in a company who has the authority to help you and who does not. I don't bother with the frontline people because they generally don't have any ability to help you and I also try to do as much as I can for myself.
     
  12. vertical smile, Mar 21, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2018

    vertical smile macrumors 68040

    vertical smile

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    #12
    I could give literally hundreds of examples poor customer service.

    I have a few from Apple. Sadly, I have had to call Apple Support more in the past few years, than the previous 20 years combined.

    One of the issues was when Apple Music came out, and for the record, I did not sign up for Apple Music. I have an iTunes Match subscription, and had one since iTunes Match came out. A few months after Apple Music was released, a lot of people signed up for the free trial, and when the trial was over, then canceled their sub, only to discover that there music library was missing.

    This is what happened to me, except I never signed up for Apple Music. All my iTunes Match music just disappeared.

    The problem was made worse by the first Apple Support rep I talked to, as she had no idea how iTunes Match worked, and was arguing with me over the phone about it. I can't remember if I asked to talk to someone else, or if I hung up and called back, but the second person I talked to knew about iTunes Match and had used it before.

    They escalated my ticket to an level 2 support, and then an Apple Engineer. The problem was never fixed, as they responded to me a few weeks later saying that I never had any music uploaded at anytime in the years that I was paying for the sub, which was obviously bullcrap.

    Luckily, I had a back up of about 90% of the songs.

    There are many more stories with Apple, but this was one of the most annoying.
    --- Post Merged, Mar 21, 2018 ---
    I had a bad customer service experience with Dewalt. A high-end portable compressor I purchased has a bad pressure regulator knob. I called customer service, and they referred me to a third party repair shop that was closest to my home.

    I called the repair shop, and told them that Dewalt referred me to them, the woman that answered from the shop seemed too busy to really talk about my issue, but suggested that I drop off the compressor, and they would repair it.

    I took off work a little early one day, drove 45 minutes to the shop (btw, Apple Maps took me to the wrong location, and I had to call the shop for directions), only to be turned away from the shop because they do not repair electric compressors, but only small engine kind. The man at the shop told me that Dewalt keeps referring people to him, even though they repeatedly tells Dewalt that they do not do electric stuff.

    This was a customer service failure from Dewalt and the repair shop. Dewalt, for referring me there to do the repair, and the lady at the repair shop, for not asking about whether it was electric or a small motor, knowing that Dewalt mistakenly refers people to them a lot.
    --- Post Merged, Mar 21, 2018 ---
    Great point. Your post reminds me of the Starbucks versus the DMV joke by Dan Cummins. It is funny, but very true.

     
  13. BarracksSi Suspended

    BarracksSi

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2015
    #13
    Customer service is normally not an occupation where one stays for a long time and becomes a subject matter expert. And if they stay long enough, rather than remaining on the front lines to take calls, they usually wind up getting pulled off the phones to either do management or serve as "Tier Level higher-than-whoever-you're-talking-to-now".

    I had a college friend who worked phones for a mail-order outdoors retailer (think hunting-fishing-camping equipment). He totally dug his job, because fishing and camping are his hobbies, and he could talk it up with the customers and have a good time. But he was a rarity, and most of the people there (including myself, for a summer) just do it as a job.
     
  14. Huntn thread starter macrumors P6

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #14
    I've had good experiences with Apple Care and the Genius Bar so I'm used to dealing with people there who know how to find solutions, and mostly they did not spend inordinate amounts of time "researching". However, I'm not refuting your experience. :)
     
  15. cube macrumors Pentium

    Joined:
    May 10, 2004
    #15
    It sucks when existing customers have to pay more than new customers for the same service.
     
  16. lowendlinux Contributor

    lowendlinux

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2014
    Location:
    North Country (way upstate NY)
    #16
    Job like these are just gigs because they don't pay anything and there's no career progression therefore no reason for mastery...but hey the product was cheaper.

    One more thing to think about though companies are having to adapt to new customer preferences. I would never call or go to the store to talk to someone I want to just type it up in an email, send pictures if needed and have a return email sent with the solution.
     
  17. D.T. macrumors G3

    D.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Vilano Beach, FL
    #17
    So you mean customer service never knows ... :D

    Seriously, the chance of CS being helpful (or even quick) is so rare, I get euphoric when I talk to an informed rep. Usually the problem is I'm going in with way better understanding of the service/tech/problem, I just need some quick clarification/validation, not some S L O W consumer facing scripted response.
     
  18. Zenithal macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2009
    #18
    I love it when they're cheerful, too.
     
  19. mikzn macrumors 6502a

    mikzn

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2013
    Location:
    Vancouver
    #19
    Honestly some sales budgets represent stunning amounts (millions) and what would happen if the same resources of just one giant sales campaign were invested in a "lets impress our core customers" customer service effort?

    I can remember when "Air Miles" was the "new thing" and learning (what the company I worked with) spent on the first year effort of the sales campaign - millions - on just one aspect of the sales advertising efforts.

    Meanwhile - the company decided to cut costs on the non revenue "service" areas :confused:
     
  20. Tech198 macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2011
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #20
    All this has to come down to, companies gotta play by the book and lack of service, not enough staff to handle volume of calls. Waiting on hold for 20 minutes or begs the question "If your gonna be waiting anyway, i may as well email"

    Often its "quicker" to waste time listening to on-hold music..

    At least some of the stuff they play is not all bad....

    Customer service *have* to be nice, its business, but you know in your head what you wanna really tell them :p
     
  21. A.Goldberg macrumors 68020

    A.Goldberg

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2015
    Location:
    Boston
    #21
    Well, in other news I got my overcharge fixed. It only took a week for them them to respond. Not good for a major US-based company.

    They however not only corrected the amount but reimbursed me entirely and gave me $75 credit towards my next purchase. So I guess I can’t complain too much.

    Apples attention to detail and fantastic customer service is what originally drew me to Apple in the early 2000’s.

    Unfortunately, I don’t think their customer service is nearly what it used to be. It’s still far above average, perhaps still the best in the industry, but it’s just not the same now that Apple is so mainstream.

    Customer service/experience is everything. I remain loyal to companies that are loyal to me, even if it costs more money. I only wish more companies believed this.
     
  22. Scepticalscribe, Mar 23, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2018

    Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #22
    Couldn't agree more. Apple customer service is not what it was.

    These days, I am working abroad, and I have just had a frustrating experience with the Financial Times; I took out a subscription with them around a month ago, and have been unable to access it. At all.

    Emails produced technobabble and gobbledegook (and the inevitable subsequent 'customer satisfaction survey' which drew the lowest possible grade from me) - the sort of instructions that required an advanced degree in computers to be able to understand let alone begin to address.

    Today, home on leave, I phoned them, and was put on hold, and transferred. Put on hold and transferred. Again.

    When I finally managed to obtain a human voice, there was little by way of apology, and no attempt to ensure that I managed to be reimbursed for the month's reading I hadn't been able to access. There was also an explanation that suggested this was my fault and that because I use safari, I kept getting these captcha things which refused to acknowledge the validity of my password.

    Eventually, they said they would have to discuss with senior management some means to bypass this stuff, implying that by doing so they would be doing me a something of a massive favour.

    Outraged, I said I merely wished to read a paper that I have purchased a subscription for without having to leap through hoops on a daily basis, and furthermore, I pointed out that I can access The Economist - to which I also subscribe - without having to use a password each time after the first occasion when I had logged in a long time ago. (The Economist - when there was a glitch, insisted on reimbursing me for issues I had missed, - I simply said to add them to my subscription thereby extending the due end date, which they duly did - they were and are an absolute pleasure to deal with). Today, the FT sniffed, remarking that "The Economist is a different publication" (this is a fact I am perfectly aware of, I was merely drawing attention to the marked in customer service).

    With a sigh, they agreed to send me a link by-passing this nonsense.

    Ah, well......
     
  23. A.Goldberg macrumors 68020

    A.Goldberg

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2015
    Location:
    Boston
    #23
    Wow, sorry to hear you’re having so many subscription issues. That’s quite strange.

    It sounds like The Economist has about the same quality of support as the hospital network I work for. Let’s just say I have 4 different user names linked to the same password (user name depends on what system you want to use) and Office 355 is the most unreliable pile of crap ever made. At least slowly but surely the kinks are coming out of our $1B+ (yes billion) EHR program. The tech support doesn’t really care about problems as long as it works at least somewhat.

    On a more positive note, I recently bought new glasses. The screw fell out twice in about a week and a half of buying them so the eye glass store replaced the frames no questions asked. I was afraid they were going to tell me the frames were no longer made or it would take months to get them, but thankfully I had a replacement 2 days later.
     
  24. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #24
    The Economist were fantastic whenever (and it wasn't often - I've been a subscriber for years) I had occasion to contact them; rather, it is The Financial Times that I have had the problems with.
     

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