Customer Service AND Product

Many companies have been working on improving their customer service.  Some do this activity well.  Others give you the appearance that they are concerned about your experience and value your business, but really do nothing to improve their service.  I recently had that experience with AT&T.

I had some strange charges on my phone bill and an increase in my monthly charges that I didn’t understand.  The customer service person was friendly and quite helpful.  He couldn’t figure out why I had the charges, so he refunded them.  When I decided to discontinue one of the services I had, I asked him to make sure I wasn’t charged a fee for removing the service.  At the end of the call, he read from his programmed script to ask if there was anything else he could do to give me satisfactory service.  My only thought was “don’t put miscellaneous charges on my bill and don’t randomly increase the charges for my services so I don’t have to call in the first place.”  But alas, this customer service person can’t control or impact that.

I am not a fan of AT&T, but I also try to be impartial in my posts.  So in my best effort to be impartial, I will say that AT&T has totally missed the point.  It is great that they are trying to deliver better customer service.  BUT, if the underlying product is not good or does not offer good value for the money, it doesn’t matter how good your customer service is.  (Come on guys, charging people to add and remove services – please find another way to make money.  These fees are an insult).  You have to deliver on BOTH customer service and product.

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