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(Kinston Free Press)   "Customer service isn't dead, it just smells funny"   (kinston.com) divider line 69
    More: Amusing, mashed potatoes  
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7614 clicks; posted to Main » on 24 Jul 2012 at 8:45 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-07-24 10:56:04 AM  

ZiegZeon: Oh, I use to work for a Satellite company, and at first we had a 10 minute call time. Then we rolled out HD DVR's and got new management, call time was now 5 minuets. Guess what? HD DVR's took 6-8 minutes to reset. So the one thing we had to do on every call could very well push us over the call time. And that was the first step. Metrics FTL.


img.photobucket.com
 
Ant
2012-07-24 11:02:49 AM  

jopy666: Thats the reason call center people are not helpful, they are being timed at the same time they are putting up with lots of abuse from the people they are tasked with helping, and when they do actually spend the time to help, they are increasing the likelyhood they will be fired and their job will be off-shored to india.


This.

/no, I don't work in a call center, but I do call them from time to time
 
2012-07-24 11:04:57 AM  
So... wait...

Some dude at a he-won't-say-what-store-it-is arrives an hour late for work where they have to open the store by themselves. Okay, employee fail. But everybody's been late to work. You shouldn't have all your eggs in one employee basket unless they're really trustworthy.

Their previous encounter with the employees, when they were told they opened at nine, is irrelevant. Nobody can predict the future.

Then the next day, after getting a hard sell from a phone drone, he gets to another customer support rep who takes his job seriously and helps him out. (That's been my experience with Sprint customer support too, actually. One time in three I get a sales robot instead of a human.)

But customer service is clearly "smelly."

Everybody knows, at this point, that the hard sell and upgrade sales are here to stay. For every hundred people you ask if they want fries (or an extended warranty) with that, 10 say yes, 89 say no thanks, and 1 posts a rant on Consumerist where they whine into an echo chamber full of people who wouldn't buy your shiat anyway. It's a winning strategy.
 
2012-07-24 11:08:05 AM  

Ant: Metrics are stupid and don't really reflect reality in any meaningful way. I encourage any attempt to make them even more meaningless.


Sure they reflect reality. If you have a 1,000 second handle time, it means you're spending over 15 minutes on average. If you're the customer, do you want to spend 15 minutes to get something done or get the guy who can get it done in half the time? If 10% of your customers call you back within a day after talking to you, you're likely not fixing their shiat. Metrics are only bad if that's the only thing you look at or the goals you set for them are wholly unreasonable.
 
2012-07-24 11:25:07 AM  

roc6783: FTFComments: "Courage Wolf
Very interesting reading. There is never enough over-embellished, minor detailed events blown up to fill blogs, in my opinion. Why just the other day I went to read a blog. Keep this in mind because it will come into play later. The blog stated it had a daily update at 7am and as I use the info there to gamble on Midget Driven Cart Racing from Uzbekistan, it's important to me to have that info to catch the line when it is perfect.
At 7:16am I checked the blog and it hadn't updated from the day before, which was exasperating as it reminded me I had lost 50 quid on an underdog dwarf recently. At 7:25, as the first betting line opened the blog still had not updated, and I watched what could have been a great line on a talented little person racing later that day tumble. Was I angry? Of course? Who wouldn't be irritated about a small bump in the road ruining your entire day?
At 7:40 the blog had finally updated and I think I got a decent bet in and my day carried on normally, well as normally as one could hope after having some minor, first world problem detail ruin my entire day! I could have let the event go, considered the fact that eating at restaurants, or betting on midgets is such an immense luxury in the scheme of things, but no. What I needed to do was give vent to the anguish, the deep and scarring pain caused by this trivial event. Which is how I ended up writing this blog post in hopes that someone would come along and validate my pain, my cleverness and not say YOUR BLOG SUCKS!"

Alright Farker, fess up. Which one of you magnificent bastards posted this?

//My money's on spentmiles


*raiseshand*

I got a response from Jon. But he can't please the Wolf.
 
2012-07-24 11:47:31 AM  

rudemix: roc6783: FTFComments: "Courage Wolf
Very interesting reading. There is never enough over-embellished, minor detailed events blown up to fill blogs, in my opinion. Why just the other day I went to read a blog. Keep this in mind because it will come into play later. The blog stated it had a daily update at 7am and as I use the info there to gamble on Midget Driven Cart Racing from Uzbekistan, it's important to me to have that info to catch the line when it is perfect.
At 7:16am I checked the blog and it hadn't updated from the day before, which was exasperating as it reminded me I had lost 50 quid on an underdog dwarf recently. At 7:25, as the first betting line opened the blog still had not updated, and I watched what could have been a great line on a talented little person racing later that day tumble. Was I angry? Of course? Who wouldn't be irritated about a small bump in the road ruining your entire day?
At 7:40 the blog had finally updated and I think I got a decent bet in and my day carried on normally, well as normally as one could hope after having some minor, first world problem detail ruin my entire day! I could have let the event go, considered the fact that eating at restaurants, or betting on midgets is such an immense luxury in the scheme of things, but no. What I needed to do was give vent to the anguish, the deep and scarring pain caused by this trivial event. Which is how I ended up writing this blog post in hopes that someone would come along and validate my pain, my cleverness and not say YOUR BLOG SUCKS!"

Alright Farker, fess up. Which one of you magnificent bastards posted this?

//My money's on spentmiles

*raiseshand*

I got a response from Jon. But he can't please the Wolf.


Funny that he demanded your real name and photo. Expected to see "Wanna go? Cmon bro, be a man and throw down" after it.
 
2012-07-24 12:04:43 PM  

Tanthalas39:

Funny that he demanded your real name and photo. Expected to see "Wanna go? Cmon bro, be a man and throw down" after it.


"Stop giving yourself a bath for a minute"

That's pretty funny.
 
2012-07-24 12:06:38 PM  
Customer service wasted an hour of my time this weekend for three problem reports (four -- I added one about having to use Support Chat instead of being allowed to fill out a form), so I'm getting a kick out of all this stink.
 
2012-07-24 12:09:37 PM  

rudemix: I got a response from Jon. But he can't please the Wolf.


"I've never claimed to be able to write things that cater to the wolf community."

I lol'd hard.

I'd add one more thing to that entirely true Cracked article: when you get good customer service, ask to tell the person's boss about it. Many places track positive comments like that and reward employees for them.
 
2012-07-24 01:00:07 PM  
Funny? Funny how? Like a clown funny?

///DNRTFA
 
2012-07-24 01:30:14 PM  

adenosine: Metrics are only bad if that's the only thing you look at or the goals you set for them are wholly unreasonable.


Metrics (aka short call times) are the ONLY way most call centers gauge performance, and that's ridiculous -- especially since customers don't usually have a designated customer service rep who always handles their account. If they did, it would be very easy to gauge performance by "customer happiness reports" tied to a specific agent. Instead, they measure by short call times, which mean "we don't have to hire as many people because we're making them resolve issues faster." That doesn't result in better, faster service. It results in "In order to stay employed, I have to get my customers off the phone ASAP."

And it's not always the rep's fault that a call runs long. Ask any tech support employee what percentage of their callers can quickly and accurately describe the problem in less than 60 seconds.
 
2012-07-24 01:44:33 PM  
I love calling my support line at work when i'm managing. Generally the only day this ever has to happen is Sunday and the call center is completely understaffed on the weekends.

Being paid hourly for listening to hold music and being able to ignore customers because I'm actually making an important phone call? Great!
 
2012-07-24 01:44:34 PM  
I understood the article, it was written in plain English. Some of you need to work on your comprehension.

And I sympathize with the "locking the door" scenario. I try never to show up 5 minutes before closing time in any business, esp. a restaurant. People who show up right before closing, esp. if they have a large party, are douchebags.

I also resemble the call center anecdote. I had to call Sprint 5 times recently over the space of a week to get the same relatively simple issue taken care of and only the last person I talked to (woman who sounded like she might have been Indian, maybe that was their Bangalore call center) managed to do it right. The rest failed utterly. And a few expressed puzzlement at what I was asking them to do (all American, native English speakers, as far as I could tell).
 
2012-07-24 02:40:11 PM  

Smelly Pirate Hooker: I understood the article, it was written in plain English. Some of you need to work on your comprehension.

And I sympathize with the "locking the door" scenario. I try never to show up 5 minutes before closing time in any business, esp. a restaurant. People who show up right before closing, esp. if they have a large party, are douchebags.

I also resemble the call center anecdote. I had to call Sprint 5 times recently over the space of a week to get the same relatively simple issue taken care of and only the last person I talked to (woman who sounded like she might have been Indian, maybe that was their Bangalore call center) managed to do it right. The rest failed utterly. And a few expressed puzzlement at what I was asking them to do (all American, native English speakers, as far as I could tell).


No one had a problem with the actual syntax or grammatical structure, farkwit.
 
2012-07-24 02:53:45 PM  
FTFA: On Sunday when I try to get online to see if any of you folks have made naughty comments on Kinston.com that have to be deleted, my wireless Internet card isn't working. My first call to Sprint customer service was less successful than Kanye West's Oak Ridge Boys audition. I kept trying to tell the customer service rep that I was calling about Internet service, but she kept trying to upgrade my cell phone.

You got a human being on the line?
 
2012-07-24 03:26:21 PM  

Tanthalas39: Smelly Pirate Hooker: I understood the article, it was written in plain English. Some of you need to work on your comprehension.

No one had a problem with the actual syntax or grammatical structure, farkwit.


See, like this guy. Reading comprehension fail.
 
2012-07-25 01:36:17 AM  

cfletch13: That was an unreadable Dennis Miller-esque article. I couldn't finish it.


Neither did the author
 
2012-07-25 01:52:36 AM  
Instead of asking the staff person if they were on some sort of new quasi-daylight savings time that caused them to be 17 minutes behind the rest of the universe

That's actually Jewish Standard Time. In fact, if you look JST up on good you will find an actual definition.
 
2012-07-25 01:53:46 AM  
good Google
 
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