Microsoft Is Desperately Seeking My $7, and What Kind of Customer Experience Is That?


Share on LinkedIn

I was at a conference the other day and received an emergency call from my 15 year old son saying that the XBox live was not logging in and our account was suspended. My wallet had been stolen a few weeks earlier and I realized that they were one of the accounts I had neglected to update. No problem, I will just call them with my new account number.

My son gave me the number (another gripe about cell phones and letters in phone numbers that are impossible to translate) and I called the customer service line. I talked to a nice guy who asked me a long list of typical questions. Phone number, secret questions, address, the usual. I explained to him why I was calling and it seemed like he was going to be able to help me. Then he uttered those fateful words. “Let me transfer you to the billing department”. I asked him; Can’t you just update the system with my new credit card? He said no, I will have to transfer you.

Then the games begin. My new representative knows nothing about me or why I am calling. I ask him if he can look up my case number that the last guy gave me, and he told me to calm down and let him ask the questions. He asked what my credit card number on the account is and I explained that my card was stolen and I do not know the old number. This required several explanations but we managed to get through it, only for him to begin to explain that my account was overdue so it was necessary for them to shut down my account. I said that makes sense and I just wanted to update the credit card on the account.

I was obviously moving out of step with the script because I was told again to calm down. He then went on to explain that I had an overdue account and would be required to pay that off before we could discuss changing the payment. I had been on the phone for over 35 minutes talking to someone (not on hold) and was delivered the big news that I was $7.00 overdue and would have to resolve that before we could move forward.

I started the call thinking this would be easy, update my card and badda bing badda boom, and my son is back online. Silly me. It took me 45 minutes to get my account back online.

In these economic times, I am driving my organization harder than ever to ensure customer loyalty with proactive outreach programs and customer experience improvements. My customers are considered the future of my organization and it is my charter to protect and provide for them so we can survive these difficult times.

I guess that isn’t true for all organizations.

Renee Bochman
Renee Bochman is senior director of global customer care at Endeca Technologies. She specializes in transforming support teams into strategic knowledge resources that clearly differentiate companies from their competitors. She is a known advocate for building collaborative communities and driving outstanding customer experience with proactive support programs.


Please use comments to add value to the discussion. Maximum one link to an educational blog post or article. We will NOT PUBLISH brief comments like "good post," comments that mainly promote links, or comments with links to companies, products, or services.

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here