Will Someone Please Pick the Phone?

When it comes to customer service, it looks like telecom companies in India are on a race to outdo each other in mediocrity. The less said about the call centers the better. Add to that billing errors, 'document submission' for 'security purposes' once every 3 months, non-receipt of payments, and total stupidity - calls asking us to purchase "one more SIM" - what sense does this make other than being an easy way out for people to meet sales targets?

I think they do it on purpose. I mean, who cares if you lose a couple of customers? India is full of other people who are potential customers, you are expendable and replaceable. Many more bakras in the field. So just make sure people don't call you. Some techniques for this are:

  • Make calls to customer care chargeable.
  • A 'customer service' section with confusing navigation and sub-menus with info which people are looking for are buring deep inside, like phone numbers.
  • Deck out your website with pictures of drop-dead gorgeous females smiling into microphones.

Can't you feel your issues getting resolved already?

However, you can also pick some pointers from everyday life to avoid customer calls. Like for instance, what do you do when you get a call from someone you don't want to talk to? You don't pick the call. Apparently Tata Indicom follows this same strategy as I learned today.

Below here is the mail I sent to the nodal head of Karnataka, after getting goddamn irritated with their non-existant 'customer service'.

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Hi,
 
I am Vinod Vadakkadath, and I own a Tata Photon+ connection 92430xxxxx a/c no. 90xxxxxxx. This is a postpaid connection and simply put I want to change this to prepaid.
 
In case you are wondering, I am writing to you directly because:
 
1. I could not get through to the call center in the first place: 08066680121
2. After a lot of digging I found that the call center number is now: 1800266121
3. I call this number and after all your IVR-menu navigating hungama, I press 9 to "talk to the customer service representative" and the phone rings 10 times and no one picks up. The call gets disconnected. I tried 3 times.
 
What kind of call center do you operate? Is the call center on strike? Or they are all on chai/smoke/ lunch/loo break? Or maybe your customer service agents are all wandering minstrels? Do you have any real intention of servicing your customers, other than all the pretty pictures you have put up on your website?
 
If I miss the bill payment deadline by 1 day, I have half of the employees from Tata Indicom calling me every alternate hour asking me when I will make the bill payment. Delay it for one more day, and the voice asking me to pay up changes from "India threatening Pakistan" to "Israel threatening Palestine". Why can't you show atleast half of that sincerity in servicing your customers? Or do you do it on purpose? I dont care what is wrong with the banana show you are running in the name of providing non-existant broadband services, which is the reason I want to change to postpaid in the first place. 3 km out of any major city/town boundary, your network goes for a toss and I get as much data as a corporation tap gives water during mid May.
 
Whatever, please take this seriously and make someone pick up the phone there. Or, if you could, please help me change my connection from Postpaid to Prepaid.
 
Oh and I have raised a complaint number: 23xxxx

Thanks a lot.

Signed.

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Hell, if they really cared about servicing customers, they would have their customer support center number splashed across the top of their website and ads. In bold. So there is that.

Also, read the review I wrote on Tata Indicom Photon+ on Mouthshut here (click). I think I made a mistake by praising their customer service.

This demotimational poster says it all. What an idea, Sirji?

The Truth and Principle.

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