When Customer Service Isn’t Responsive


Great story about Customer Service and how important are the promises a company makes to customers… Great example of how Life-Cycle Value Management and Customer Experience are deeply connected with Customer Service.

A couple of weeks ago, my son was involved in a car accident. Most importantly, no one was hurt but the car suffered extensive damage. Because the accident was caused by a mechanical failure, I’ve been trying to get a response from the warranty company to determine whether they will cover any of the repair costs. I’m still waiting to hear back, which is pretty pathetic in an age when customers expect to receive prompt support.

The first time I called and followed the prompts, I was informed that the wait time for my call would be 1 minute, 46 seconds. That didn’t seem terribly long, so I stayed on. A couple of minutes later, the next update informed me that my estimated wait time would be 1 minute, 46 seconds. Again, I decided to stay on a bit longer in case the system hadn’t been updated. After hearing the same recording a third time a few minutes later, I decided to make use of an option for a call back when I left my name, phone number, and the policy number. But then, there was no callback. This is going on five days now.

I’ve since called back, been placed on hold again, and left another message, this time alerting the customer care team that my last call was never returned and requesting that I be contacted that same day. The callback still hasn’t come.

I don’t know what’s worse – dialing into a contact center and being put through an endless number of transfers and still not having an issue resolved or not getting through to someone in customer service at all. Both scenarios are incredibly frustrating.

There’s a ton of research that’s been published about how customers expect responses to Twitter complaints within an hour or 24 hours via email. I’m a pretty reasonable guy. I understand that the company’s customer care group might’ve been overloaded with requests on the first day I tried contacting them. I didn’t expect a call back within minutes. But I did expect a callback.

If your organization fails to respond to a customer request – even if the customer’s communication was inadvertently misplaced or overlooked – this sends a bad vibe. Because no matter what the reason may be for the miscommunication, the message to the customer is “We don’t care about you.” And that’s not a message that any company can afford to convey.


By Tom Hoffman, 1to1Media, When Customer Service Isn’t Responsive

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