“Thank you for calling. Your business is important to us. For English Press 1. For Bahasa Malaysia Press 2. For Mandarin Press 3. For Tamil Press 4. For Punjabi Press 5. If you still can’t get it that we don’t give a rat’s ass about you, Press 6”
What happened to the good old days when an actual person picked up your call? Yes it makes business sense to have an Automated Voice Response System. And yes I am aware that this rant is roughly 15 years late. But still, it is a rant worth making.
Businesses spend millions on compelling, evocative brand building advertising that promises the world; and then fall flat on their face when it comes to over-the-phone customer service.
Imagine calling your credit card company, and after going through like 3 levels of menu options it is revealed that all the customer service personnel are busy and will attend to you shortly. Oh yeah… and I also want you to imagine you just got mugged and calling to report your card is lost.
Now you know why there’s stuff like road rage and perhaps even suicide.
Outsourcing of call centres could probably be blamed for this deterioration of service. Let’s say you found a goose that lays golden eggs. Would you ask your neighbour to take care of it? The answer would be a vehement no.
But businesses have no qualms asking a third party to handle the queries, concerns or complains of customers. Aren’t we – the customers – supposed to be golden egg-laying geese? Apparently not.
That’s why, if you notice, many brands are substituting phone numbers with web URLs in their advertising. They don’t really want to hear from you.
I say screw it. Call and bug the hell out of them… if you can get someone on the other end that is.