Customer Experience versus Customer Service (3 of 5)

On this part of the series I’d like to highlight the cellphone network industry in Botswana. Being a customer for the two main networks, like almost everybody I have met, I get to experience the majority of the products the cellphone market has to offer.

My most specific qualm is the call centre provision the networks have engaged. There are several questions I ask myself every time I need to make a query, raise a problem or need assistance. After-sales services aren’t really touched on in a lot of marketing/business courses, as it isn’t really focused on the core functions of the business (sales, operations, manufacturing or product development). The questions I ask are on the basis of the above;

1) Do they really record the interaction between the client and the call agent? Considering the fact that the experience is often quite consistently bad, this should mean that there is no review or intergation of the data for training or improvement purposes

2) Do they understand that most issues with network problems should require that an IT professional be working? Considering the fact that we can contact the service provider, all services should then be available, rather than the inconvenience of waiting for the IT department’s operating hours

3) Do they review the IT data on most calls that are made? Considering the fact most calls keep you waiting for at least a minute and at most almost 15 minutes, is there no consideration for the need to hire more staff?

4) The fact that there are few cellphone networks results in customers not having enough options to divert too. Regardless of this, why is quality not a virtue for the call centre service?

I am pretty sure that employees of these networks also must experience these when they’re not at work and I am yet to think up a reason of why these issues aren’t troubling any of them.

It is a realisation that entities continue to make money because of the fact that there are no better alternatives; but in the context of globalisation, how is this not considered as a means to adhering to the global corporate strategy (for the multinational provider)? Or just to merely ensure that customers experience a wholesome value-driven product?

I believe that the days of merely relying on a product or limited market are gone. There is a new need for meeting sophisticated needs, uplifiting the local standards towards global gearing and understanding that customer service is merely not enough for brand loyalty and sustainability.

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