Monday, August 28, 2006

Customer Disservice

"Effective right now, in an effort to cut talk times, cut a ticket rather than engage in lengthy troubleshooting.

You are providing better customer service by answering and documenting the call than by not answering the call"

It's not that we are not answering calls, it's that the users are waiting in the queue for so long that they hang up and call back later. Of course, the number of people that do that is actually very low. By contract, we need to keep it below 7% but typically it's closer to 4 or 5%. The theory is that by giving them slipshod service, opening a ticket and then making them wait for a few hours until second level support decides to take care of them is better than having them wait a little bit longer in the queue, having their issue addressed properly and maybe resolved right away.

I don't buy it. I never have. This is not about providing good customer service, it's about tweaking the helpdesk numbers when we have a high call volume. Recently that high call volume has been caused by the help desk's inability to hire and keep qualified people. Being short-staffed, the wait times are going to go up. Sure, a few user's are going to get fed up with the wait and hang up but is it good customer service to shortchange the other 95% of the callers out of proper troubleshooting, making them wait hours for second level support to contact them about something we could have taken care of in a few extra minutes? I don't think so. Management does. Are there any actual numbers to show what is really going on? From what I know of the metrics and the way statistics are gathered, those numbers don't exit.

In the meantime, I'm simply going to keep doing things the way I always have, taking the time I need to troubleshoot an issue I feel I can resolve.

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