Wednesday, February 07, 2007

A Good Example of BAD Customer Service

Our satellite internet has been slowly degrading in quality over the past few months (we live in a rural setting and don't have any other means available). After many phone calls, the satellite company agreed to send someone out to take a look.

PROBLEM #1 - Subcontractors don't always have the same values as the company that hired them.

The technician was supposed to arrive last Thursday. He didn't - and he didn't call. Friday, someone called that didn't know much about our issue and claimed he would come next week. He came on Monday - our main tech guy is off on Mondays.

PROBLEM #2 - Don't say you're going to be somewhere at a specific time and on a specific date and then not show up. It's not professional. Refer to problem #1.

The guy looked at our satellite and determined that we need a new "radio" part. He doesn't let us know that he won't be able to re-establish any type of service when he makes his diagnosis. HENCE, our entire satellite goes down.

PROBLEM #3 - If you're going to make something worse than it already was without a backup plan, let someone know before you do it. Refer to problem #1.

After "demolishing" our satellite, the tech put our part on order. Little did he know that the part is on backorder - no apparent arrival date in sight.

PROBLEM #4 - Don't order something and tell the customer you'll get it fixed right away if you haven't checked whether or not the part is actually available. Refer to problem #1.

The subcontractor was actually contracted by another subcontractor who won't return our phone calls.

PROBLEM #5 - If you have a business, answer the stinkin' phones!! If not, customers will stop calling - that means you won't have any more customers. Refer to problem #1.

After an hour on the phone with the satellite company, they don't have any solution. They do not have any "radio" parts anywhere. If I want to know when they might be in, I'll have to call the distributor myself. Oh yeah...I had to work for an hour to get to someone who could make a decision to help me TODAY. It's hard to make a rational point to someone who is simply reading a script and won't vary from it.

PROBLEM #6 - Don't ask your customers to do your work. If you promise a particular service, then provide it. Don't shirk your responsibilities.

I end up calling the distributor. They can't tell me any information because I'm not a wholesaler, even though that's what the satellite company told me to do. After much prodding, they finally tell me that some parts are in, but are already being filtered out and they are expecting more - sometime in the future.

PROBLEM #7 - If many people are experiencing the same problem with the same part, it just might be defective. Fix the part or order more of it just in case. Economics 101.

The distributor told me to call the subcontractor again. I did. The subcontractor doesn't have any idea when they'll get the part. They were told by the distributor that they don't really know that information anyway.

PROBLEM #8 - Passing the buck is a dangerous tactic. If you can't answer the customer's question, find someone who can. Don't pass it off on someone else.

The distributor then assigned a tech to come to our church on Friday - just in case. They probably won't have the part, but they scheduled one anyway.

PROBLEM #9 - If you can't do anything productive, doing something stupid does not make up for it. THINK PEOPLE, THINK!

After several hours, we are still no closer to any type of solution. The satellite company did tell us that we could have a dial up account until the problem is resolved. Oh yeah. That one line on dial up will work well for 10 people. And at those blazing speeds!! YIKES!

PROBLEM #10 - If you have any other option besides satellite internet, GO FOR IT! (And hopefully they will speak English)

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