Sunday, October 2, 2016

Customer Service Hell

One of my regular doctors (this is how I know that I am getting old:  I have more than one doctor and they are all regular i.e. repeat visits) gave me a referral to see yet another doctor which meant I had to call for an appointment.

In the good old days one would call the doctor's office and speak to the nurse/receptionist and make an appointment but not anymore.  These days we are all so modern that we call a 'call center' that is full of people in front of computer screens who we are required to interact with.

So, I called the number, worked my way through the much hated automated phone options until I got to a real person who professed to be ready and able to help me.  Just three problems:  (1) her Spanish accent was so heavy I could barely understand her (she was probably thinking, this guy's Anglo accent is so heavy I can barely understand him - wait, that was a real problem too!), (2) she could not understand that I was not in fact Young Son who had visited their office sometime in the past, and (3) the background roar of other customer service reps talking to all of their callers so so loud and the first two problems were trivial in comparison.

Why oh why would a call center be designed to allow so much noise to exist to the extent that nether the CSR (customer service rep - don't you love it when I write jargon?) or the customer (me) could really hear each other.  The whole thing  quickly dissolved  into a modern Abbott and Costello farce of 'who, what, and when' misunderstandings and requests to repeat by both of us that the routine would have done Saturday Night Live proud.

In the end we managed to make an appointment for me...unless it is actually for Young Son.  I'll just answer in the affirmative to whatever name they expect me to answer to.

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