Reply to post: Life in a Call Center

BMW complies with GPL by handing over i3 car code

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

Life in a Call Center

While things are better if you work in an internal call center, third party call centers are pretty much useless for this type of scenario.

In an outsourced call center:

1. You do not escalate. Because there is no one to escalate to. If a customer is sufficiently irate, you can get a senior phone jockey to try to calm him down, but you can't pass the customer to level 2 support.

2. Because you don't know who or where L2/L3 support is. You're allowed to create a handful of ticket types, which either magically get fixed, or the customer calls back the next day even more irate than before.

3. There is no ticket queue for legal. If a customer threatens legal action, you're specifically instructed to hang up on him. If a customer has a question for the legal department, they have to do the leg work to find out how to contact them first.

4. Different call centers prioritize different things. We were told to keep call times down, but we prided ourselves on actually solving customer problems, in contrast to another branch that just kicked them off the line after 15 seconds. And, yes I once spent an hour walking some old lady through the steps to fix her computer.

5. Customer service representatives are usually trained for the specific scenarios that they will be responding to. In my case, we were told that we were hired because we had good customer service skills and some technical background. So, if a customer asks a question outside of the CSR's training, they can try to ask their neighbor or a senior CSR, but that's it. Maybe they can put in a ticket, probably not.

Of course, things are better in internal call centers. You probably do know the (one!) guy that does each type of level 2/3 support. You can escalate problems to management when they're in the office. And management usually wants things to actually get fixed, even if it takes a while.

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