The ‘Customer Care’less

Today my wife received a credit card (which she has not applied for) from The Bank. I suggested calling up the Customer ‘care’ to sort out the issue.

10:00 AM

Automated voice “ Thanks for calling us. Happy new year to you and your family and …………….”

10:04 AM

Automated voice  “Dial 1 for…dial 2 for…. dial 3…. Dial 49………”

Beep (1)

10:05 AM

Automated voice “Dial 1 for… dial 2 for… dial 3 for”

Beep (2)

10:06AM

Automated voice “Dial your 10 digit Account number or ATM debit card number or Credit card number”

Beep Beep Beep Beep beep beep beep beep beep beep

10:07 AM

Automated voice “Please Dial your TPIN”

Beep Beep beep beep

10:08 AM

Automated voice “Your balance is Rs X, last salary credit is Rs X. Your withdrawal balance is Rs Y”

Wife “ How do I get to the customer care”

Me : “Try 9”

Beep (9)

Automated voice “Sorry that input cannot be recognized. Dial1 for… Dial 2 for…..”

Beep (1)

Wife “Arrgh”

Automated voice “Dial 1 for dial 2 for dial 3 for……”

Beep (9)

10:10 AM

Automated voice “Please wait while I transfer your call to our customer service executive”

(it took 10 mins and 100 years of patience to connect )

Automated voice “All our executives are busy. Your call is important to us ( yeah right)”

10:12 AM

Customer care (CC) : “Good morning How may I help you”

Wife : “See I dint apply for a credit card and how come you sent me one”

CC : “Surely I can help you with that. Happy new year”

Wife :”Could you please let me know whether this card is charged?”

CC : “surely I can help you with that. I need to confirm a few things”

Wife : “But I typed the TPIN right? Why do you need to ask me the security questions?”

CC : “Well its out security policy…………………blah blah”

<after verifying questions>

10:16 AM

CC : “Thank you for verifying the security check”

Wife “Okay. Now could you pleeeease tell me why you sent me this card? Should I open the packet?”

CC : “NO. Please don’t open it”

Wife “Okay”

CC : “Please tell me the card number”

Wife “How do I know the card number?”

CC “Its on the card ma’am”

Wife “So I can open the package?”

CC “ hmm Oh okay you can open the package?”

Wife (losing it) “What are you talking about?”

CC “Please open the package m’aam”

Wife “ Aaargh”

Wife “The card number is…….”

10:20AM

CC “I am afraid I have to connect you to the credit card dept”

Wife “Wait….”  Beep   

Automated voice “Please wait while I transfer your call to our customer service executive. All our executives are busy. Your call is important to us”

10:23 AM

CC (another lady): ““Good morning How may I help you”

Wife : “See I dint apply for a credit card and how come you sent me one”

CC : “Surely I can help you with that. Happy new year”

Wife :”Could you please let me know whether this card is charged?”

CC : “surely I can help you with that. I need to confirm a few things”

Wife : “But I typed the TPIN right? I have already gone through all that?”

CC : “Well its out security policy…………………blah blah”

<After verifying questions>

10:30AM

Wife “Could you please let me know if this card is charged or not. That’s the only thing I need to know”

CC : “this card? No this is life time free card”

CLICK !

Wife ‘Aarrgh”

30 mins to know that card is free of charge. I mean how worse this system can be? I can understand the security check and all that. Why can’t they just have one direct button to the customer care? That’s all I ask for !!! 

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16 comments

  1. Wow.. that sucks! and how can they send you a card which you did not ask for? this is the height of poor service.
    Which bank is this??

  2. Yeah. And they call it free. But who is going to pay my telephone bill??????

  3. That was nicely written! Totally emphathise!

  4. thanx Nita.

  5. I bet u had a stop watch..:-)
    well.. hope u don’t encounter recovery agents at u r home..confirm whether it is free..

  6. yeah i did a check on the net and found that it comes free with the salary account.
    I guess she will have to call another agent to confirm. (that could lead to a new post)

  7. he he i had similar xperience recently .. i had lost my debit card and had to endure half an hour (slightly exaggerated figure) of press this num.. 1…2…3… before I got through to a ‘customer call executive’ — to lock the card mind u! and (un)luckily I got the card back and had to endure another half an hour of 1…2…3… to get to ‘customer call executive’ .. who refused to unlock the card! apparently my details were outta date…. !! 🙂

  8. Ha ha.
    I hate it when they start the endless list of “Dial 1 for, dial 2 for………”

  9. Just wondering.

    Even if your wife did not ask for the credit card, it sure comes with a contract or ‘terms and conditions’ and this information must be contained in the pack (it is required by contract law covering transactions between a company and a customer). It would also contain information about the interest rate (a potential cost) and any privileges she may have. Most credit card contracts now contain fine print about non-usage or low usage, which can trigger fees. There may be undesirable implications for her credit record if she is not aware of these and incurs charges which she later wishes to dispute.

    If the terms are not acceptable to her, she is within her rights to cut up the card and not use it. But she would not know that till she reads the contract (since she did not have a chance to review them beforehand, as this card was never formally ‘applied for’).

    I think if more customers read their contracts – at least once – many of these time-wasting calls can be avoided. A contract does place responsibility on both sides you see.

    Thanks.

  10. ^^ oops!

    non-usage or low usage, which can trigger fees

    now thats scary!

  11. Balu:

    That is not scary – that is how the economics of these products (unsecured credit products with low margins in a highly competitive markets) works. Consumers need better financial literacy even to comprehend the T&Cs that come with products. One look at the NINJAs in the US who precipitated the credit crunch and it is fairly apparent that consumer awareness is a hygiene factor not a luxury in financial services consumption…

  12. Shefaly,
    Often the fine prints are a little difficult to understand. I have a corporate credit card and it nowhere in the documentation mentiond that it is free (however it has a clause “Charges will be blah blah”. BUt it is free as promised by the bank and the customer care (I have been using it for more than 2 years now and was not charged)

    The fine print doesnt give us the date on which our bill will be generated ( I coulnt find it) I had to call the CC to get that…..

  13. the term fine print is of not much relevance in India as not al details are provided there or rather our law doesn’t force them to list ALL their rules in the document.. that is not the case in USA though where all the clauses have to be mentioned

  14. Funny to hear about it.. though not funny to go through the process…

    .. But your call is very important 🙂

  15. @Balu
    Exactly. Also its is indeed ‘fine’ print. they cud use a bigger font.

    @Vijay

    haha.

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