I don’t usually use my real estate blog to rant about things, but today that’s just what I’m doing.
This week, in just the last 3 days, I’ve had the ‘opportunity’, and I lose that word quite loosely, of having to try to get some customer service from 2 companies. The first company was one that I thought was local, LOCAL, like right here. Until recently, I had always been able to make a call, get a real person to talk to and then be transferred to another person in the office here in Portsmouth NH. Not anymore!
I dialed their phone number, got the same person who always answered, and then was transferred to the ‘department’ that was going to help me. When the person came on the phone, I could tell right away I had ended up off-shore somewhere. I asked the person on the other end of the phone where they were, and that confirmed what I suspected.
The second ‘opportunity” was just today, which set me off on this post. I had purchased a major appliance earlier this year, and have had need to have repair technicians come out several times to get it to work properly. Well, once again it’s not functioning properly so I called to schedule a service call. They were supposed to come out today, sometime between 1pm and 5pm. Yep, that infamous time window – you know full well they can narrow that down a bit more, but they don’t even try. Anyway, 5pm came and went, and no service person. At 6:15pm, I called the service line, asking when the technician might be showing up, if at all. Lo and behold, I found I had traveled time zones and countries to another off-shore servicing center.
Why does that continue to happen? Do American companies think that’s better servicing for their consumers? No doubt it’s cheaper for them, and it undoubtedly provides jobs in the off-shore countries. But at what cost?
When you try to get help from those so-called ‘service centers’, they really can’t help you at all. If you ask something that isn’t on their script, they’re lost. They go right back to repeating their script, and that’s just flat useless to me, the consumer on the other end of the phone trying to get help regarding the product I plunked a lot of money out for.
I wish there was some way that would allow you to know in advance that the ‘service center’ for whatever company you’re thinking about doing business with is here or ‘over there somewhere’. If I could know that in advance, I would think long and hard about whether I really wanted to buy that product or those services from that company, or not.
In real estate, we’re all abuzz about transparency. How about the same thing in the general marketplace of regular goods? I think that’s only fair and right – for my money, I want to know who’s going to help me when/if I need help, and what kind of rigmarole (sp?) I’m going to have to go through just to reach someone who really can help me.
Off-shore servicing centers – BIG-time FAIL!!
What’s been your experience with servicing centers? I’d love to hear your experiences in the comments below.
Servicing the New Hampshire towns of Portsmouth, Newcastle, Rye, North Hampton, Hampton, Stratham, Exeter, Greenland, Newington, Dover, Durham and surrounding areas, and the Maine towns of Kittery, Kittery Point, Eliot, South Berwick, York, and surrounding areas.