Thursday, July 16, 2009

Service Call to Hell

Aren't they all?

Just so you know the blog isn't dead, nor am I for that matter, though scheduled posting was having problems for awhile and I got off my planned posting groove. But, today, I bring you a semi-divine (or infernal pending your point of view) and totally fresh rant about something that most of us have probably had to endure: Service Calls.

Specifically service calls to satellite companies customer support. Oy, they are vexing!

Now anyone who has ever worked behind a desk answering phones knows that human stupidity knows no bounds. However, when calling from the other side, it's rather annoying to have to navigate through those ludicrous automated voice response answering machines that make you annunciate every consonant and vowel at either 500 decibels above your normal speaking voice or in your best deep bass Barry White guttural monotone. You try to maintain your composure but it's difficult, especially when it's about an extant issue. Like, say, something that should have been resolved by the Tech who made the service call, gave you a cell # to call (which you had to ask for), telling you to call in case of problems then seems to just ignore you.

Honestly calling in to customer support isn't just the LAST THING on most of our lists of things to do it's likely NOT ON IT, period. Some service center people seem to not be aware of this fact. They INSIST on wasting our time. Now, I understand, they have checklists of what they are supposed to do and say but C'MON!

It's bad enough when you have to call in about mundane satellite service issues. If you've ever called in more than once you know that you will have to navigate through the river Cocytus, and this is only the beginning of your sojourn into Hades. For from Cocytus your trip takes you into Acheron, the river of pain, and it is suffering you will endure listening to craptacular elevator music interspersed with the chipper baritone of a fast talking methhead's voice trying to get you to buy this, that, or the other programming package.

Then, if you're lucky, a live voice attached to an agent infernal will pop in just in time to wake you up (or keep you from defenestrating your phone) and start asking you the usual 20 questions to verify this, that, and the other thing before finally getting around to asking you WHY you are calling. The experienced know THAT is when you take a DEEP BREATH, and hope the dice you are about to roll don't turn up snake eyes. Sadly they usually do and you end up repeating all the above, at least once, usually twice, before finding someone that can actually do something (not necessarily help you) about your "issue" (they're never "problems" anymore) which usually means sending you to YET ANOTHER operator to explain everything all over again.

But that's just for the usual run of the mill problems. Heaven forbid your sojourn into the nether regions in search of a light bearer should come as a FOLLOW UP call to attempt to seek an issue be fixed that a previous service call did not. For then you must endure the agent infernals continued efforts to take you through the CHECKLIST OF TROUBLESHOOTING, which, being a veteran who's escaped confinement to the pit by the thinnest of reprieves, you know all to well. And HEAVEN FORBID you try to get the agent infernal to realize this fact and SET UP A SERVICE CALL. They wont do it. Oh, no, they'll keep coming at you with their passive aggressive no-service fu. Oh yes they've been trained well by Lucifer, these agents infernal, to NOT accept that you might actually be intelligent and know about the checklist; Shh! no one is supposed to know about the checklist! Nor will they accept that you *gasp* have already CHECKED the equipment for fault and don't actually want to be talking to these agents infernal. You just want them to set up a service call to take care of your issue, which wasn't fixed, but if you don't go through the flaming hoops with these agents infernal that means wasting YET MORE OF YOUR TIME waiting for a SUPERVISOR. .

Which, for those who've ever answered phones, know this is really the "cool down period" for callers that these agents infernal have marked in their computers as TROUBLE CALLERS, meaning anyone of an IQ greater than the acidity of water who don't meekly submit to the CHECKLIST OF TROUBLESHOOTING, and so it's back to Limbo and listening to bad elevator music and ads for programming packages that you aren't likely in any mood to give two shakes of a Lamia's tale about.

After all that what do you end up with? Excuses. And, if you're (un)lucky, a scheduled call back from a supervisor or special customer service rep for the following day. They try to make it sound special, like they're doing you a favor, but you don't need to have worked phones in a service center to know this is a line of BS. Heck the "supervisor" you're talking too is likely Larry or Steve or Leland, the guy from three cubicles over, and he's just reading off the CALMING ANGRY CALLERS LIST (which is a far more polite title for what service centers actually call these things) with one goal in mind: Getting you OFF the phone.

Which, under normal circumstances, would be fine. After all this wasn’t a call you wanted to make anyway. But now you've got time invested in this. You've probably been standing there for at least 20-25 minutes. You're beyond annoyed. All you wanted was for the infernal agent to set up a friggin' service call! You pay the extra monthyly fee. Just set it up! Is that so difficult?

Apparently it is because now you have to make an effort to be around your phone the following day at a certain time to talk to someone who, you hope, assuming they ever bother to call (which they might not) will actually DO SOMETHING besides waste your time. If you could add up all the man hours that service centers spend collectively wasting peoples time and vice versa (some callers really are idiots) I bet you'd find that it'd be measured in the decades.

Moral: Life is too short, so stop wasting time. (ESPECIALLY MINE!!!)

# end of line

No comments:

Post a Comment