Friday, September 28, 2007

Get supported, customers

Recently, I called Southwest's customer support and was surprisingly greeted within about 20 seconds by a real human. Even stranger, when we determined that Southwest couldn't fly where I wanted for a reasonable rate, the customer service rep actually referred me to other airlines which fly the same route. As far as I know, Southwest doesn't partner with any of them, so this appears to just be good customer-focused support.

However, most customer support systems are a nightmare (I'm looking at you Sprint and COX Communications!). Today, I found two tools which might make getting support suck slightly less.

Both tools help with the problem that many companies try to do everything over the Internet now and hide their customer support numbers. (This is especially amusing/frustrating when the company itself is an internet service provider, though I know that Netflix hid their CSR number at one point.)
  • GetHuman gives you numbers and instructions for how to talk to a human immediately. They also rate companies according to their standards.
  • Bringo takes it a step further. They claim to call these numbers for you and navigate the phone tree for you. Once they reach a human, they will call your phone and connect you.
P.S. While I'm talking about good/bad customer support, I should say that HP was very helpful when I was buying my laptop from them. I don't know if their technical support is as good as their sales as the laptop has been problem free so far.

No comments: