This is a continuation of 3 Ways To Ensure Your Customer Service Doesn’t Suck.
Every interaction with your members results in one of three ratings:
- Exceed expectations. (Impress)
- Meet expectations. (Satisfy)
- Miss expectations. (Disappoint)
Like you, I’m all about exceeding expectations. But it’s tough to do all the time. Let’s take a look at some recent customer service experiences and see what can be gleaned to increase your proportion of #1s. Click the company name to see the experience.
There was a billing issue with my health insurance, so I reached out for a solution. 24 hours later (an eternity for Twitter), they suggested switching to e-mail. I did so, wherein their reply said they would follow up. A week later with no response, I wrote back. Now they recommended a phone call, which, despite a long conversation and the agent saying it should work, I had no such luck. Their conclusion: The problem is a problem. Work around it. Rating: 3
I submitted e-mail feedback for their Mint app on a basic improvement. Their reply came in 3 hours and appeared to be a real person. However, their response had nothing to do with my request, so either it was a bad “machine learning” auto-reply or someone who didn’t read. Two more frustrating exchanges until they seemed to grasp my request, passing it along to their app development team. Rating: 3
They feel like a different company whether contacted by phone, in-person, or over Twitter. Also, every person gives a different story, sometimes blatantly lying about system issues or policies. Their Twitter team is the only one which tries to follow through to resolution. For my billing issue, they helped get it resolved…to an extent. Rating: 2 (anytime they don’t burn down your house is a good support experience)
I had two separate issues for them to address. One was a delayed flight, and how it was handled. We eventually got to our destination, but with more frustration than needed. I e-mailed the tale, and they replied with an apology, explanation, and a travel voucher for future flights, no questions asked. Another experience came during a flight, where their in-seat entertainment failed (for me and the row behind). A crew member had us all enter our information in a tablet to send out a voucher. It never arrived. I asked over Twitter a week later and was told it was on its way. Another week later, no luck. I wrote back, and they issued it manually within 10 minutes. Their systems faltered, but the people were empowered to step up. Rating: 1
BrightStar Credit Union
I’ve written about my credit union in the past. They’ve had challenges, and still have a ways to go. However, they are on an upward path. The app security issue? Fixed. Twitter replies arrive a bit sooner. Even phone hold times are 10 minutes or less (yes, that’s a dramatic improvement). But it was with my recent vehicle loan refinance where they shined (Get it? Bright…star? “Yes, I’m a natural blue.” – Dory). The evening of my vehicle purchase, I completed their online forms. Two days later, I had a personal reply from my now-dedicated MSR. I shared all necessary paperwork, information, and signatures. All questions and interactions were answered within a day. If not for waiting on the original lender, she would have had my refinance done in a few days. Rating: 1
What can we learn from these experiences?
- Florida Blue‘s problem was a lack of follow-up coupled with a technical glitch that no one knew existed (or how to fix).
- Intuit either used a bad keyword checker to auto-generate replies or their support team has an inability to read the most basic requests.
- Comcast…who knows. They have so many conflicting systems, departments, and people. It feels built to under-deliver. Don’t let your credit union get that complicated.
- JetBlue has built their reputation on great service, and even when things go wrong, they are on top of it. I should also mention, that last interaction with them was on a Sunday evening.
- BrightStar has come a long way. They’re still not my PFI for a few reasons, but I’m happy to have my auto loan with them. It was everything a member experience should be: Timely, personal, and clear. Oh, and they helped me get a great rate.
I read somewhere that all customer satisfaction surveys are meaningless if they don’t ask this one question: Would you recommend this product/service to your friends or family?
Well, what would your members say?