Skip to comments.Sprint Cuts 1,000+ Customers For Excessive Complaining
Posted on 07/11/2007 6:10:16 AM PDT by GeorgiaDawg32
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Hundreds of cell phone customers are being given the boot, accused of being too high maintenance.
Sprint-Nextel is disconnecting more than 1,000 subscribers on grounds the clients call customer service too often and make "unreasonable requests."
The 1,200 people getting dropped will have to find a new carrier by the end of the month.
A Sprint representative said the average customer calls customer service less than once a month, but the 1,200 clients getting the boot call 40-50 times as often.
(Excerpt) Read more at news4jax.com ...
I wonder what God foresaken country their calls go to?
I work for one of the service providers.Belive me, these are non-revenue generating customers.50 to 60 calls to customer care a month.Some have not paid a bill in years - monthly credits on account.
No big loss!!
Sprint was dying before they swallowed Nextel. Nextel had almost four times as many subscribers as Sprint, and with good reason: Sprint is the “No Service” zone.
Why don't you try calling Sprint too many times and then they'll drop you and you won't have to worry about waiting for your contract to expire (just kidding, but if you called them and told them you didn't like the way they were doing business...they sure wouldn't let you out of your contract.)
I’m in CS, too. The only reason why I think Sprint or any other company would drop a customer is if that customer was costing them more money than they were making off of them.
That being said, I’ll never use Sprint again. I absolutely hated their support system and their policies. So, I would bet these folks who got the boot will be happier with another service anyway.
Now all the other Sprint customers know how to get out of that lousy service contract!
Sprint has stumbled onto Robert Mugabe’s Zimbabwean Solution. Rather than change the law, replace the electorate
“I hear they are also going to drop customers who dont use their phones often enough!! “
I was a member of Book of the Month Club for years and years. They got a new president or some such and decided purging the rolls of those who bought an insufficient amount of books would be the thing to do.
So they dropped me.
A year or two later I got a letter pleading for my patronage again. Apparently they nearly put themselves out of business.
I smiled as the wadded up solicitation made the waste basket in one.
Interesting. Bump for later reading.
According to Sprint, the 1,000+ customers were those who were ‘scamming’ the customer service system to get free phone credits.
Some of these people had acquired more than $1,000 in free air time credits - simply by calling and complaining - over and over and over and over - with the goal of building more free air time credits.
When my husband was sick, I worked two jobs. My night job was security at a Sprint facility in GA-this was one of the companies I saw firing American workers and hiring foreign-I think mostly Indian workers. I don’t like them and wouldn’t consider using them.
Now we know how to get out of our contracts!
I dont disagree with you. The problem is usually NOT the agents fault. You would cringe if you knew how little training most of these people get. Usually, they are tossed a procedure manual and told to learn it. When they are faced with a problem, the supervisors dont want to help—or they are stretched too thin—or THEY arent trained.
In the end, the frustration of dealing INTERNALLY is transferred to the customer.
Some call centers are run by accountants: How many calls are lost, how fast can you get through the call, how many sales can you make in a shift or hour, etc. etc. When you get the sense of urgency to get you off the phone, you know the agents are graded on time—not service. The old adage of what gets measured, gets done is very true.
We used to track call types and make adjustments to “daily briefings” to ensure that our reps were at least familiar with the issues. We also made sure that our reps had detailed training on the call types that made up 80% of our calls. This means that a new rep off the street would have to show profienciy in solving these calls without help before we would let them on the phone. Keep in mind that 80% of the call “types” account for about 95% of calls. We would put the new reps in a “guppy pool” with experienced agents to help with the “outlier” call types.
In a business where turnover is normally exceeding 50%, ours was less than 20%. We paid OK, but not great. BUT, we treated our folks like grownups and made sure there were people on the floor that could deal with issues and help out.
You want to see whether or not the call center you are dealing with is good or not, simply ask for the Supervisor and their name. I am stunned at the number of times there is no supervisior for handoffs. In some cases there is one supervisor for 50 agents. THAT person has one helluva job—they are too busy getting yelled at from management, subordinates, and the customers to get ANYTHING done.
Follow through is a matter of system support. Most service interfaces are legacy systems from 20 years ago. There is no mechanism for follow up. So the rep relies on post it notes. And the systems where the follow up in incorporated into workflow, you will find that most of the time the systems were designed for industry A and “adapted” to Industry “B”. And hardly any of it is customized to the company at hand. Too expensive. But, in the end it costs in employee turnover and customer turnover.
The final ingredient is “empowerment.” One of the first things I did at the bank was establish an empowerment procedure. The front line staff was never allowed to credit an overdraft charge. Our supervisors were spending 40% of their day giving OD charges. When we asked them what type of analysis they did, the answer was they asked the agent on the phone what they thought and why—and then acted accordingly.
We simply allowed the agents to act within a set of guidelines and then allowed them to work within that system. Supervisor takeovers dropped, we did not give THAT many more credits. Our agents felt great and the customers loved it.
In the end, you have to come up with a way to make the “mass” mentality of the call center act like you are talking to the folks down on the corner. I always told my boss that if we treated the customers better than they “teller” on the corner, were easier and more convenient to reach, it wouldnt matter if the agent was in Boston, MA—Portland ME—or Portland, Ore. (The people from india were always trying to get me to send calls to them, but I just couldnt bring myself to ship jobs overseas—and the accent was a killer.)
Call center reps don’t start out rude. And the customers don’t turn them that way either. Most of the time they empathize with the customers too much (thus making promises with all good intentions that cannot be kept.) The real culprit is the supervisors, managers and most of all—the bean counters that cut training and systems expenditures.
Sorry to go on so long, but this is something I am passionate about. There is no reason for customer service to be bad. It is such a time, money, and emotion drainer. It drives me nutty as well.
“It’s the phone cops, man!”
Very interesting-I rarely ‘yell’ at customer service reps. I have been there and know most of the time it is not their fault. I ask for supervisors and have been told more than once that they are not allowed to refer calls to a supervisor or that one will call you back (never happens)That being said, I am sick of the terrible customer service I find in various companies. It costs me time and money-not the people who answer the phones, but the people who credit payments incorrectly, can not find a simple fax concerning insurance.
When we got our mortgage, we picked a company that does not sell the mortgages. We might have gotten a lower rate with some of the more agressive companies, but the savings are not worth the hassle. Even if I paid a higher interest rate for my new car loan, I would still do it. I think it will actually be lower actually which is nice.
I’m surprised that they were able to get through to complain. Musta been using land lines.
The day after I left my employer, I switched my banking relationship to the small, local bank I had as a kid. They know me, and they know my name. While “I” could make a call center sound like it was next door....I dont think anyone at the bank I left could.
Look at the manufacturing scandals coming out of China. The country is a third world cesspool. Do people believe they will manufacture products with any attention to quality, health and/or safety?
Should Sprint Pay for Dropping Some Customers?
July 12, 2007
LOS ANGELES Sprint Nextels plans to drop some customers that the cell phone service provider said complained too much seems to be turning into a marketing nightmare.
The L.A. Times is reporting today the chair of New Yorks Consumer protection Board thinks the cell phone giant should pay a termination fee to those customers it wants to drop.
"If someone adheres to a contract and pays for service that carries a termination fee for quitting, it should be a two-way street," Mindy Bockstein told the paper.
I think this would be fair...if we cancel our contracts, we are penalized. Sprint should have to live up to their contract. They probably have a clause in there that gives them the right to terminate the contract at will though.