My wife and I have been in the process of moving out of our apartment, getting married, and hiring contractors to remodel our current home all in the span of about three months.
Needless to say, we’ve been spending a lot of time on the phone and have become extra sensitive to the bad customer service of company’s phone systems.
This post isn’t going to be a long rant about poor customer service, this is about just a few very specific problems that prevail specifically with over-the-phone customer service and how they could be fixed. Let’s start with the number one problem with phone-based customer service
The number one problem with phone-based customer service
No one is designated as your customer service agent. You will likely get on a call and be transferred at least once. Person #2 has no awareness of what Person #1 said or promised. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself saying something like “But the first guy told me it would take a week!”
Every time you are transferred to a different person, the experience opens itself up to loss of information and miscommunication. These are the main ingredients for conflict.
On the other hand, you can’t train agents for every possible scenario. Transferring is a necessary evil. Companies can fix this by designating each caller with a personal concierge. The concierge’s job is essentially to stand in the place of the customer transferring from one person to the next alongside of them.
The concierge works for the company, so they have been on this phone call many times before. They know the specialized information that will be needed by the agents (“Can you give me your account number or Product EIN please?”). They are also a single point of information about what the company can do for the customer.