Further to my recent blog about positive future developments, the company has now decided to enable the call centre to test out having email.

You may wonder why we don’t have email. We do too. In this day of modern technology you’d have thought that we should be able to email documents to customers. Or at least any normal thinking person would.

The company feels that the call centre staff will abuse the email. The rest of the company have email, but of course, there is no possible way that they would ever be guilty of abusing it.

Anyway, before I climb onto my ever-ready soapbox, they asked us for reasons why we thought we should have email. This had to be a maximum of 100 words?! I duly went around my team to get feedback, to be greeted by some extremely sound reasons/comments, but also the stupidity of ‘I don’t think we should have it’. These people should either go back to primary school or back to the slave-trading days when they weren’t allowed to be free thinking.

I put together a proposal. I think it was around 100 words. It looked it. I didn’t bother counting. The managers said I stated the facts very well, especially when mentioning the little details about all the bits of paper we have lying around, which is against FSA regulations. Can’t forget the FSA now can I? That would be sacrilege.

So we’re now waiting to see if my short proposal bears fruition. I’ll keep you posted. By blog, not by email.

Mystery Shoppers

We’ve had a mystery shopper phoning us at work. I’ve spoken to him a few times, and so have some of my colleagues. We know it’s the same person as he always asks us to comment on our main competitor!

Each time he phones he’s asking about a different policy. Usually one that’s on the internet. He always complains about the price. Asks us to match our competitors price, and then asks us to comment on our competitors policies. When I politely explain that I cannot comment on another company’s policy, as I am not trained on them, he gets quite aggressive and insulting.

He thinks I should have all the details of what other companies are offering, and should be comparing the policies immediately. He doesn’t seem to realise that the FSA have put a stop to this ‘slagging off’ other companies, which used to occur so often in the past.

I wonder how many times I shall speak to him this week.

Weekend Off!

Yes! I’ve got the weekend off! This is a rare occurence so far this year. I aim to put my feet up and chill.

One thing I’ve noticed as soon as I got up this morning, is that my throat is not sore. The last two days my throat has felt like it’s been washed by a scouring pad. I think it’s down to the fact that we have been so busy at work.

For anyone who doesn’t know, our call centre, like many others, is authorised by the FSA. They now have more powers than ever for closing companies down. As such my company decided to retrain everyone and then brought out new scripts for us to read when setting up policies.

The new procedures are better. Safer for both us and the customer. However, the scripts are quite long.

The FSA requires companies to advise customers of quite a lot of information when they buy a policy. All of this information is crammed into a 12 page script. A straight forward policy set up can take anything from 10-15 minutes. However, as anyone who sets up policies knows, it’s very rarely straight forward.

Most customers have questions. Especially the ones who can’t be bothered to read. I especially like the customers who say they are looking at the internet and want to know what the price of the policy is and what it entails. I always start with “As it says on the internet…”.

My longest call so far was 2 minutes short of an hour.

The last few weeks have been one call after another, with a lot of sales being set up. If you can imagine reading out a 12 page script several times a day every day, you can imagine how sore my throat has been lately.

I’m soooooo looking forward to my week off at the end of March!

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