Posted by Media Relations on Monday, May 16th, 2005 - 1 Comment »
Many companies use their excellent customer service as a unique selling point. However, I am personally finding that the statement “the customer is always right” is quickly becoming extinct.
I feel that we are experiencing an increasing dichotomy of customer service standards. While many businesses go above and beyond (to an annoying level) to serve their clientele, other companies are failing to meet minimum expectations.
For example: The majority of Telephone and Internet service providers have a policy where they will not commit to making appointments for installing telephone and Internet connections. Instead, they provide a window of time in which they “may” arrive.
Last week, I had a frustrating experience with Qwest. When I arranged for the technician to come out, I explained to the customer service rep that it was vital that the technician come as early as possible since I needed to work from home. The rep told me that she would place a special request on my account and that the technicians usually respect these requests. I was, therefore, very annoyed to find that, not only did the technician not come as early as possible, but he didn’t even arrive during the window of time that I had been given. Having expected the technician to arrive at 8 am, I was appalled that I was forced to wait at home until 4 pm.
Filing my complaint to Qwest, I was told that not only did it not guarantee installation until 5 pm, despite providing windows of time, but that residential installations were automatically placed at the bottom of the list priorty-wise. Why did the customer service rep insist that my special request would be respected, knowing all too well that the Qwest policy stated otherwise?
Qwest is blatantly unwilling to meet the needs of its customers. The employees work a strict timetable, Monday to Friday, 8 am to 5 pm. For those of us that work, are we expected to take a full day off work simply to sit home and wait for the Qwest technician to arrive? That is appalling customer service. Vacation allowances are too small as it is without having to waste a whole day waiting for Qwest.
Qwest really should review its policies and customer service standards. Otherwise, it can expect to receive complaints from many more angry customers.