Can you trust your call centre – a tale of Enterprise lies and unfulfilled expectations.


Are you measuring and rewarding dumb stuff?

A close colleague recently arranged to move some large furniture and being aware of size constraints spent some time researching and contacting various ‘self drive hire’ firms for a suitable vehicle. The best offer was confirmed following a long discussion with sales folks in the Enterprise[1]call center which included comprehensive discussion of specific (height, breadth, width) measures to ensure a good fit. Job done or so my colleague thought.

A few days later they went to collect the vehicle. Armed with a tape measure to double check the details they were shocked to discover the actual measurements were between 15-20% less than the call center really trustworthy sales guy stated. Naturally the van hire didn’t progress however the response of the depot was even more shocking. “Oh yes they do that in the call center to make a sale.” Whoops.
That goes to a point about paying people for achieving the wrong outcomes.
Reward people for doing dumb stuff and they’ll get really smart at it. 
Many times people would be duped and accept the sales persons assurances. It is often too late in the day to change (when you are stood out in the cold and snow) so customers would have to go with it. Not so my colleague who demanded a refund. The depot staff obliged however did say it would take several days to process.
Funny how you can accept $550 one minute and refuse to give it back the next?

What about customer satisfaction?
Well if you measured my colleagues response at the point of call center confirmation using Net Promoter Score[2] it would have been 9 out of 9 (A Promoter) plus a willingness to recommend to a friend. After the depot visit 0 out of 9 and tweets to followers to avoid using Enterprise. So let’s review the measures:

Organization Measures in the call center:

·      Duration of the call – optimum

·      Call experience – excellent

·      Customer Expectations – met and exceeded

Vehicle depot:

·      Reception services – excellent

·      Processing of paperwork – optimum

·      Staff interaction with customer – excellent

·      Payment processing – optimum

·      Vehicle to specifications – Not. Zero. Nil.

How many of the 10 measures are actually aligned to achieving a Successful Customer Outcome[3]?

Perhaps one. And yet Enterprise will award their people for achieving the other nine. What sort of behavior does this create? Well whatever it certainly isn’t geared to achieving Successful Customer Outcomes.

Trust Based Management
Much of this experience comes down to trust. Four questions to ask yourself, your organization, and even perhaps your customers. 

1.     Can you trust your people to do the right thing by the customer?

2.     Can you trust your fellow employees – or are they prepared to lie and deceive for their own self interest?

3.     Do you award for Successful Customer Outcomes (SCO’s)?

4.     What measures could you put in place to evolve more towards (3).

Final thought:
Enterprise’s kicker is “We’ll pick you up” Perhaps it should now be “We’ll let you down”