Call Centre Hassles

We have many hassles at the call centre, not just the normal job pains. Most of the hassles are from the various calls we take day in and day out.

At 8pm closing: ‘I know you close now and I’m sorry to trouble you, but could you just set up three policies for me. I know exactly what I want.’ (I know what I’d like to give you.)

‘I’m expecting an engineer from…(our competitor). Could you tell me when he’s coming?’ (Try ringing them.)

‘You’ve put the price up. This is extortionate! I’m a pensioner and can’t possibly afford this. This is just daylight robbery!’ (It’s gone up by 50p for the whole year!)

‘I’m not happy about this renewal price. You’ve put the price up by 10.257%. Can you justify this?’(Thanks for being so specific. Yes we can justify it. This is a business not a charity. We can put the prices up whenever we damn well feel like it.)

‘I want to take out a policy but I don’t have my bank details with me. If you set it up now I’ll phone later to pay.’ (Like hell I will.)

‘I want a job doing. A blow job.’ (That’s fine. I bite.)

‘What underwear are you wearing?’ (The colour wouldn’t suit you mate.)

Oh what fun we have!


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Mystery Shoppers

A few of my colleagues and I believe that we have had a spate of mystery shoppers phoning us. There have been a number of potential customers ringing up and asking every question under the sun about two or three policies. The questions range from the utterly ridiculous to extremely technological. Definitely not our normal customers who tend to ask questions when they can’t be bothered to read the mailing that has been sent to them. Or the customers who look things up on the internet but can’t be bothered to actually read the information in front of them. No, definitely not our normal customers.

Occasionally we get a customer who knows exactly what they want and what questions they need to ask. This is usually about one policy and they are very specific about what they need to know. They are very different from the mystery shoppers.

The mystery shoppers will start with a basic policy that doesn’t cover too much. They’ll ask some very standard questions about the price, the length of time before cover begins, what’s included, the cancellation period. They will then ask a couple of technological questions about the policy. They then change direction and begin speaking about an upgraded policy, asking questions that are specific to different areas of the upgrade.  These questions are usually too specific to be our standard customers’ questions.

The next tactic is to bring in a third policy and ask a few questions about that. Then the interrogation starts. The questioning goes back and forth between all three policies and if we are not careful we get confused and say the wrong thing. I always make sure what policy we are talking about before I answer, and my answer will always begin by referring back to the specific policy or element we are talking about.

The question is:  Are these mystery shoppers from our company? Or are they from another company? We don’t know the answer there. But one thing is for sure, if we answer incorrectly we are in serious trouble.

 


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Late Information

We were given information at work today that we should have had at least a week ago, in most cases, but 3 months ago in one case. Price changes that went live yesterday. DPA changes that went live last week. Changes to certain policies that went live 27 March for the first stage, and 1 May second stage. But the company felt it was ok to give us all of the information today – 2 June!

Turns out that people have had failed calls on certain things because our managers didn’t even know about these changes. We’re wondering if the fails will now be overturned. This will be interesting.

I’m sure it’s not just our company that is so badly organised when it comes to communication. I’ve come across it in many companies, not just ones that I’ve worked for.

Our company has the big massive policy of putting the customers first in everything it does. But when it comes to the staff on the front line it’s a completely different story. They don’t seem to be able to understand that if we don’t have the information then the customer won’t either. So by treating us so shoddily they are also preventing us from giving the customer correct information, which is definitely not putting the customer first.

Consequently I have not been in a good mood today. And here I am trying to be more positive about everything – Law of attraction, etc. Sometimes it’s extremely hard to keep the spirits up.

Just How Hard Is It?

Just how hard is it to listen to what I am saying? It appears to be extremely difficult for some people. Take a customer that phoned me a few days ago.

‘I’ve had a letter from you about the plumbing and drainage cover. Well, I’ve already got this cover. So why are you sending me a letter about it?’

‘You haven’t got the plumbing and drainage cover Mr…, but you do have the cover on the fresh water supply pipe. That’s a different cover.’ I told him.

‘Yes. That’s right. The cover I’ve got covers the internal plumbing.’

‘No it doesn’t. The one you’ve got covers the outside fresh water supply pipe. The plumbing and drainage policy covers the internal plumbing and the sewerage system. It’s £…’

‘So I’ve got the internal plumbing covered.’

‘No. You haven’t.’

‘What’s the price for the sewerage pipe?’

‘£… for the first year introductory cost, and the current second year price is £…’ I answered.

‘So it’s £…for the first year and £…thereafter.’

‘No…’

After about ten minutes I managed to get through to him.

Or how about a customer that phoned in today.

‘What type of property is it, Mrs…?’

‘It’s in the middle.’ She told me.

Same Cover?

A guy called asking to take out cover. He came through on a particular line for a particular cover we do. The customer then proceeded to give me the reference for a completely different cover. It didn’t throw me. I merely double checked the reference and proceeded to set up the policy. I reached the price details and the customer then proceeded to tell me that he had a different price on another sheet of paper. After some questioning it appeared that he had received mailings for two different covers at different prices covering different things.

I pointed this out to the customer and explained the difference between the two policies. However, the customer was having none of this. Why? Because he had received the mailings at the same time.

‘You may have received them at the same time,’ I told him, ‘but they are different policies. They are called different names and are different prices.’

‘Yes, but I had them on the same day. And this one is a cheaper price so why are you charging me the more expensive price?’

‘Because you asked me to set up the other cover. Why don’t you read the letters first and then decide which policy you want? Then you can call us back.’

‘But I received these on the same day!’

What I really wanted to say was: ‘Just because you had them both at the same time doesn’t mean they are the same fucking policy! They cover different things. If you actually read them you would see that. It’s not rocket science. You don’t need a master’s in brain surgery. If they have different names and different prices they are OBVIOUSLY DIFFERENT COVERS you dumb bastard. Do I really need to explain the difference again? It’s very simple. They cover different things. That’s why they are different prices!’ However, I managed to keep my cool and was very polite at all times.

I decided it would be best to take a walk away from the desk after this call.

Looking a Gift Horse in the Mouth

We are presented with a lot of crazy questions working on the phones. But probably the best one is people questioning refunds. I could understand it if they weren’t happy about the amount and wanted more, but to question why they’ve had it and is it right, takes the biscuit.

We had problems with the system when certain packages were set up, so the company has been reviewing each and every one of them. Letters have been sent to the customers to let them know that the policy in question is being reviewed.

In some cases there has been an issue with the price not being correct. If the customer has been charged too much the company has reimbursed the customer.

As well as this, if a customer cancels a policy mid-term than a pro rata refund is issued.

We’ve had a few of the ‘what’s this?’ questions being asked in the last few days, but one in particular will stay with me for a while.

A customer rang in after having a £500 refund. I explained that a review had been done on the policy he had and a refund had been issued as he had been charged too much.

‘I know about the review,’ he told me, ‘I got a letter. But is this right? What’s this refund for?’

‘You were charged too much so we have given the overpayment back to you.’

‘I don’t understand. What’s the refund for?’

‘There was a system error. You got charged too much for the policy. Because you were charged too much they worked out how much you overpaid since you started the policy, and now they have reimbursed that amount to you.’

‘I don’t get it.’

I explained again and followed it up with: ‘If you don’t want it send it back.’

‘Oh, no. It’ll come in useful. Thanks. Bye.’

Why look a gift horse in the mouth?

What’s The Price?

Today was another day of ‘here-we-go-again’.

‘I’m looking at your…cover on the website. The one that’s £19 a month. Could you tell me what it covers and what the price is?’

‘As you just told me the price is £19 a month. As you can see it covers…’ Was my reply.

What is it with people? When a person tells me they are looking at the policy they are ringing about why do they need to ask questions about it? Especially when they have already told me the answer to the exact question they are asking, and they have the full details in front of them.

Another customer asked: ‘I am looking at the cash back offer. It says £29.50 a month. Is that correct?’

What does he actually expect me to say apart from ‘yes it’s correct’. Maybe I should say ‘no it’s not right at all. We just put anything on the net. It’s ok to advertise anything for any price on the net. When you set it up we’ll charge you something completely different.’ I’m sure customers would enjoy that.

Is it really so hard for some people to realise that what they are looking at is the actual information and won’t change if they ring us? Do they not realise that we can’t advertise a product unless it has the correct information? If we didn’t we would get fined and possibly closed down. I don’t think the company will want to risk that somehow.

Margaret Road Wednesbury WS10 7QT 07505067286 naturalmatrixtherapy@outlook.com By appointment only, so please contact me to discuss available times.