I know this isn’t a big surprise. I’m a huge fan of Apple. I’ve been a customer since 1978 when I bought my first Apple II.
One of the things that keep me as a customer is their technical support. They’ve thought through the process of support from their customer’s point of view. And in the process they’ve decreased their cost.
They know you who are when you call.
I don’t mean they know my name. I mean they know who I am and they have an algorithm that tells them what sort of a user I am. They know that I’m pretty sophisticated and if I’m calling I probably have a problem their first line support people can’t handle.
In fact, I’ve had more than one occasion where I’ve called and they immediately escalate the call to their senior technical support people. I can’t tell you how much I love this. I don’t have to waste an hour or two trying to get a problem resolved with someone who doesn’t have the skills to help.
We have the same goal.
My goal when I call support is to get my problem resolved and off the phone as quickly as possible. I believe Apple has the same goal. Because they send me to the right support person quickly the amount of time I’m on the phone is dramatically reduced.
Guess what, the same is true for them. Instead of having a support person spend hours with me I’m routed to someone who knows how to solve the problem quickly. Both Apple and I save time and money.
The wrong way to provide support.
On the other hand, my satellite TV provider does it just the opposite. I’ll call and tell them what I’ve done to trouble shoot the problem and they make me repeat everything I’ve done. Not only is this annoying it wastes time for both of us.
This only does one thing; it makes me want to find another provider. If the other satellite company was any better I would change, but they’re not. Instead both companies waste their customer’s time and their money by handling support in the most inefficient way possible.
They don’t nickel and dime me.
Back to my friends at Apple. My phone was giving me problems. I had called Apple a couple of times with the problem. I thought there was a hardware problem. Instead of making me continue to go through all of the fixes that didn’t work they just sent me a new phone.
What do you think happened? They made my life easy and as a result cemented my loyalty to them even more. It’s just so much easier keeping a happy customer than finding a new one. I think Apple has figured this out.
What do you do in your company?
The real question is how do you handle customer service in your company? When you get a request to provide help do you make it easy for your customers? Do you think about your service from your customers point of view?
I know I use Apple as an example for my company. Our company goal is to help make your life better. I know that only happens with service that delights you and that’s my goal. What’s yours?