Even the Daily Mail Rants About Poor Service in UK


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It was only a matter of time before the Daily Mail focused in again on one of the things that seems have an  impact on all of our lives these days, regardless of our age, gender or social status.   This time it’s not just the Daily Mail’s rantings… they have found a topic around which most of us can agree, as many discussions around the dining room table or in a pub will highlight, contact centres have become the focus of our passive aggressive anger – “Is anyone listening? The real state of customer service.

The Daily Mail piece focused on telecommunications providers.  But research we’ve recently undertaken shows that their findings are relevant across most industries.  And, interestingly, poor customer service seems to be endemic across all the territories in which we do business (we undertook the research in the Netherlands and Germany, too), although perhaps not to the extremes of the UK that the Daily Mail highlights. 

At a time when one would think companies should be working harder to make their customers happy and persuade them to continue spending their hard-earned cash, many seem to be getting it very wrong, according our research.  Perhaps one of the most shocking findings is that just 8% of us feel valued after dealing with a call centre.  With only slightly better numbers from Germany and the Netherlands (than the 17% and 18%), it does seem as if Big Business is taking its customers for granted; they’re crossing fingers and hoping for survival, rather than investing in looking after their most valuable asset – their customers.

When companies should be investing in ensuring a positive beginning-to-end experience for their customers with their organisations, it was astonishing to find out that the majority of those questioned in the UK (76%), Germany (61%) and the Netherlands (79%) have contacted customer service because of problems that could be perceived by consumers to have been avoidable if the company had taken more care with their products and services (e.g. billing errors, technical issues, and problems with deliveries or missed service calls).

When consumers attempt to deal with issues, the negative perception of their service/product providers’ attitude towards them is reinforced, with many of those questioned in the UK reporting giving up without having their problems solved after phone contact (48%).  Whilst this figure may appear to be better in Germany (25%) and the Netherlands (26%), the move by companies to drive customers to cheaper online service facilities is backfiring across our region – significantly more people report giving up using the web-based tools without having their queries answered (63% in the UK; 41% in Germany; and 56% in the Netherlands). 

Companies need to take a close look at the quality of all their customer service channels with the focus on improving the customer experience rather than on costs.  Because our customers know that get the first right, the latter follows on!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Guy Tweedale
Guy Tweedale, Senior Vice President, European Operations, has more than 18 years of experience in the IT industry. He brings a wealth of knowledge in the enterprise software arena to Jacada, with a strong focus on business process automation and enhancement in key areas such as customer management, field-based activities and financial control.


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