How Tech support works.

Two articles with bad language in one day? I know, but this is a good article. You have to wait through an advertisement to read the whole 4 page article, but I found it very interesting. It’s about how bad it is in outsourced tech-support.


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6 Responses to How Tech support works.

  1. Scott says:

    This is worse than I had imagined, but it all makes sense. It’s hard to win though. Some techs get offended when you diagnose your own problem. In this case I’d actually prefer the ‘givers’ mentioned so I could tell them the part to send and they’d be done with the call. And who was this guy getting all of the free monitors? I’ll take some of those.

  2. Jon says:

    True…How about this…Say you work in a certain call center outsourced by a certain DSL company that provisions DSL for 9 southeastern states. Say your AHT (average handling time) is supposed to be 14.5 minutes. Say you have a required script for the beginning and end of each call that takes 5.25 minutes total, leaving you with 9.25 minutes to fix the problem. Say you have a fairly computer illiterate customer (add 1 minute for each step taken) and say that same customer’s computer is plagued with spyware/adware/foistware. (add 8 minutes). You now have 15 seconds to fix the problem, assuming that the customer has a quick PC (which most don’t). Oh, and add this too…in the past, say you were allowed to call the customer back after about aminute while they rebooted or something in order to keep your AHT low? Well now that’s a nono and if you were to get monitored and you did that you would automatically fail the monitoring, you would recieve a point for failing (not a good thing, especially since if you were to fail a monitoring twice you would not only get another point but you would lose your job). So as a result of this your AHT goes up to about twice what it’s supposed to be because you can’t do anything to shorten the call. And say that every time your call gets near 20minutes a supervisor comes over and obnoxiously asks you if you need help and tells you that you need to end the call soon. Oh yeah and add this too, if your AHT stays high you’ll get put on what’s effectionally called :progress plan: and if you stay on :progress plan: for 30days you lose your job. And all this from a company who insists that the customer is #1 and that the most important thing is getting the customer’s issue resolved. The technical support may be free, but it doesn’t mean it’s worth it. Think about that the next time you dial the “tech support” line…

  3. Scott says:

    That 5.25 min script sounds painful. As a customer, I think I’d interrupt or give up. All of this is ridiculous because it’s just a long chain of people trying to show their bosses how much money they are making the company or saving the company. Like everything else, the consequences are around the corner. It might be too late for that customer this time around, but if he talks to other people about service the way that I do, there will be an effect on sales. Still that doesn’t help the guy on either side of the phone call.

  4. Jon says:

    I feel that completely Scott. The crazy thing is how many of my customers couldn’t be happier about the service they get from the company i’m working for, even though all the protocol and time pressure remains….oh the capitalist machine

  5. Derek says:

    Yeah I have been on a few lengthy calls to the Cisco TAC. At least with them you are never rushed and they do have the knowledge to support their product.

  6. Ben says:

    Heh… I kinda wish it was this way when I did Tech support for Cisco (modems, ISDN, DSL, async, Broadband aggregation, etc). There, we owned the case until completion, not until hanging up the phone. It wasnt uncommon for phone calls to last upwards of 10 hours (especially internationally), and invidual cases could be held open for as long as 2 years or longer.

    Anyway, all I have to say is that I’m glad that I am no longer a slave to the phone.

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