Questions

When a customer calls in to us they hear an IVR recording before they get through to an agent. It tells them the company name and gives a bit of information about the company. After this they get through to an agent who proceeds to answer any queries they may have. Answering questions is an everyday part of the job. There are multitudes of customers calling each and every day with all sorts of questions, from the most technical to the utterly sublime.

Here are a few of the questions we are faced with on a regular basis:

‘Do you know if it’s covered under my home insurance?’
‘I don’t know anything about your home insurance so I can’t possibly answer that question.’

‘£12 for the year? What does that mean?’
‘It means it’s £12 for the year.’ Was my reply.

‘I love the way it says from £2.50 a month. Ha ha..’
‘If you press the button where it says ‘find out more’ you’ll see it’s £2.50 month with an excess or £5 month without an excess. It’s all very clear.’

‘I’m calling about the plumbing cover. Is this building insurance?’
‘No. It’s plumbing cover. Building insurance covers your building. That’s why it’s called building insurance.’

‘I’m looking at the cover that’s £6 a month. Can you tell me the price?’
‘£6 a month just like it says.’

‘Is that the chiropodist?’

‘I’d like to order the next batch of bird seed for my budgie. Has is it come in yet?’

‘I take it you have my details in front of you?’
‘No. You haven’t even told me your name yet, never mind your address.’

‘There’s nothing wrong at the moment. I know it won’t cover pre-existing problems. I have a dripping tap – can you send someone out now?’

‘What do you mean ‘natural gas’?’
‘Is there a gas metre in your home?’ I asked.
‘I don’t know. How am I going to know that?’

‘Can you tell me who my water board is?’

‘Can you put me through to an overseas number?’

‘I’m trying to get through to…but they’ve got an 0845 number. Yours is a Freephone number, so can you put me through?’

And I work for an insurance company.

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Crap Day

I had a few unnecessary calls today. People telling me they had insurance with other companies and asking me what they were covered for. How the hell do I know? ‘Ring the other company’ I politely suggested. Yes, I was polite. It is very difficult at times.

Well, I guess that some people think that we are the fountain of knowledge and know everything about every body else, even what insurance policies random people in the street happen to have with other companies.

I wonder if the other companies were 0845 numbers? Ours is a free phone number. I suppose these people thought it best to ring an 0800 number and harass us about their other-company insurance policies. Maybe they frequently have other-worldly experiences. There’s obviously something wrong.

Next time I buy a top from Debenhams I’ll take it into M&S to return or ask questions about it. I pass M&S on my way to work. So it will be easier. I’m sure they’ll help, being the company that didn’t sell it to me.

Okay. Enough of the sarcasm. I wonder what type of calls the 118 services get? That would be interesting. But then there is a charge to call them. That would filter some of the more lazy peple out. There will still be those that don’t realise they’re being charged.

If you’re on Cable do you ring Sky? Would you ring Virgin to see what service you have on Sky? Those of us with intelligence would say no, we would ring the company we have the service with. Unfortunately some people don’t think like this.