Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Optus Customer Service Voice Recognition Software Sucks (Amongst Many Things)

We recently changed internet providers from Telstra Internode to Telstra Optus. We have had Optus dial up in the past and our main concern was crap customer service. We should have known. What do we have now? Crap Customer Service. Internode is based here in Adelaide and our neighbour two doors down works for them. He helped to get us set up, lent us a modem, troubleshot, suggested....In addition, the customer service, based in Adelaide was outstanding and always readily available.

Now that we bit the bullet and bought an ADSL 2+ or something whiz bang like that, we have stepped up from a 512K package, which once we got it set up has been very good. Trouble is you have to now call Mumbai to get help and often have to navigate the uber annoying voice recognition software to get where you need to get. The first time I did it, I was politely asked what I wanted. After slowly and clearly saying I-N-T-E-R-N-E-T in my most moronic voice, the friendly computer politely reminded me that I must be speaking Lithuanian I needed to try again. Luckily when I said "This is complete bullshit" very loudly, I was immediately connected to the correct path. Only seventeen voice activated prompts to go before I can talk to a human I thought. I was eventually connected to a friendly but not particularly helpful person in Mumbai, who assured me that I had been connected to the DSL Department and not the ADSL Department and that they could not help me and that he would transfer me. Well sorry for bothering you and have a nice day expletive deleted I thought, immediately prior to being hung up on.

So despite them sending the wrong modem, not being able to provide help in setting it up, getting exasperated on four separate and similar calls to try to get help, we are now up and running. As long as the system works, we are in good shape.

My last encounter was last night, was when I tried to set up the email since our other email is about to expire with our closed account. I found that out of 98 messages that we had received in the month that we had the account despite never having used it were 96 spam or junk emails. Not to bad considering that we had never sent an email with this address on it. After three separate calls to anybody who would listen and getting more and more annoyed I ended up with a nice lady in Mumbai who politely assured me that there was absolutely nothing that I could do (and have a nice day) and that I should just delete them and make room for more just accept it. Eventually after some cajoling by me, she agreed to look into it and voila! we discovered the spam management system, which I managed to turn on and although it has not killed all the spam it is a lot better.

So Optus, lift your game. It is worse than Telstra, which is saying something. Your customer service while helpful when you finally get to the pointy end, is exasperating, annoying and almost certain to lose you customers. Let us hope that I never have to deal with any customer service type issues again. Why is Telco customer service so poor?

Please tell me where you would like to go next.... If you want to read the post again press 1.....Heads into an endless loop somewhere in customer service land *screams loudly as he goes insane*

Thank you for listening.


pommygranate said...

Hi Colin and a happy NY to you!

Interesting you mention Optus because i owe them about $56 from my last bill (we have just switched to Vodafone, thank the Good Lord).

I called them last month to pay the bill. Having finally got thru the voice-operated robot, i was put on hold for 30 mins.

If they don't want the money, it's their problem.

What's been going on in my absence? Has there been a collective plot loss amongst some senior BP members?

Ms Smack said...

I despise the automated voices. DESPISE and like you, I curse into the phone in the hope that this call IS Being Recorded!

Internode are great. Optus and Telstra need to lift their game.. they're losing it.

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