Hot on the heels of last week’s blog about making it easy for customers to do business with you another ‘episode’ this week has prompted this week’s little ditty – How to Annoy your Customers with Automated Actions.
I have just upgraded my mobile service and a new handset – so the telecoms company now can’t take payment from my credit card but now wants 2 direct debits – one to purchase the phone and one for the call charges.
That’s OK but 2 weeks after agreeing this I received a text saying that my account was ‘overdue for payment and due to be disconnected’; strange I thought. So I phoned and got the usual automated press 1, 2 etc. Sitting on hold and starting to get a little irritated I am then cut off after 5 minutes.
Next I get a text asking if I would like a text chat – novel I thought but after 15 minutes of texting I was getting nowhere. On to the phone again – finally a person to talk to – and I find out that the error is at their end – they didn’t action the DDM quick enough. I asked why I got the message and the answer ‘sorry it’s an automatically produced message, don’t worry about it’. But I do!!
Another half hour lost, not my fault and all because a ‘broken’ automated process kicked in – I’m not alone I know but when will large companies get the message that customers are fed up with sorting out their automated errors!
So, if you are thinking of automating anything in your business that will impact the customer, consider these questions first:
Automation can be great but it can be a nightmare too if not properly thought through. So before you subject your customers to your automated process, consider what the risks are if it doesn’t work.
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