How do CS folks deal with simple phone questions from users?

miket

        I was a BlackBerry person for many years - up to about 6 weeks ago.  The very few times I had phone problems I called TM and pushed the button for "BB support".

     

        I wonder if a carrier should be responsible for teaching people how to use these ever more complicated devices?  I now use an S4, a hand-me-down from wife who got an S5.  (She gave up BB 3 years ago.)

        Being new to this new system, I had questions.  Rather than call TM - I emailed Samsung CS.  On 3 diff. occasions got quick replies within a day that answered my "simple" questions on how to accomplish a particular task.  Yes I did try to find the answer in the 100 page manual online at TM.

       I believe Apple actually holds "classes" in their stores. 

     

       My point - unless the issue the customer has with his phone or tablet can be directly tied to a phone setting that is preventing the phone to connect properly to TM -- he/she should be given Samsung's phone support number.  Do TM's reps do that?  If I buy a computer from Amazon or Best Buy - I don't expect them to teach me how to use it.  I just expect them to honor a warranty if a function is obviously broken.  Eg I buy a phone from Best Buy or TM and the speaker doesn't work - I expect them to give me a new phone.  If I need help knowing how to write/send an SMS - I don't expect the seller to teach me.

     

       What is TM's policy?

      All replies

      • tmo_phillip

        Hey miket,

         

        This is a really great question. Thankfully with phones (and most technology, as you point out) these days, you really do have a lot of options on how to get support. We try to be a one stop shop here at T-Mobile, but I'll try to break down the options you've got all around.

         

        • Support forums - This is generally the easiest way to get info on a phone. Ask any question, big or small about your phone and the community or T-Force will reply to help you out.
        • Social media - You can shoot T-Force a tweet or drop a message on our Facebook page to get help with just about anything, phone or account related.
        • Online chat - You can talk to a T-Mobile rep online, which a lot of folks prefer, without having to make a call.
        • Ye olde phone call - As you mention in your post here, you can give us a call and speak to either tech support for tech questions, or Customer Care for account or basic questions.
        • Contact the manufacturer - As you pointed out, you can always go straight to the source if these other options aren't what you're looking for.

         

        I hope this helps clarify, and personally, for any basic phone questions, I'd certainly for the forum route. Our community here is super helpful, and T-Force is always around to help if you stump everybody else.

          • miket

            Phillip -

               I'm not sure it makes $ense for a carrier to be so helpful!    I don't want to impact your employment, but it doesn't seem to make economic sense for a carrier to do too much hand-holding.  For the little amount of money we now pay for service - I almost feel guilty the few times I've had to call CS over the past couple years. 

                And, why should users who never call CS have to pay (included in their bill) for CS time for a CS person to teach the basics to a newbie?  

                  There are lots of cases where it is obvious that the problem is system related - that CS should handle.  Other questions like "how do I use my headset with my phone? or "how do I get my email to my phone" --- those should be passed on to the mfr., especially if the customer didn't but the phone from TM. 

             

                Over the years:

                  3 or so times had to call CS because phone wouldn't connect to system when landing overseas.  Had to call CS and they had to "throw a switch" to get me connected.  (Hasn't happened in a couple years.)

                  A few years ago had to call CS to arrange to return a couple new BBerry phones that drained their batteries in a few hours just sitting.

                  Probably average 1 or 2 CS calls a year for account questions.  (We had 3 lines.  Changed plan to small business w. 5 lines last fall.)

                  Now that on Small business plan, can contact CS via email.  Quicker and easier for both of us to make minor changes to account. 

              • tmo_phillip

                Hey miket,

                 

                This is a really interesting perspective! I actually agree with you on this, but it is a strange world we live in, haha. Maybe at some point support will be handled by the manufacturers exclusively, lowering the cost of service from providers? Kind of a neat idea! When you stop to think about it, it is kind of like calling your cable company if your TV won't turn on, haha.

                 

                Either way, we here at T-Mobile really do try to be as available as possible, so please keep posting here in the Support Community and let us know if you need and help!

                  • theartiszan

                    From someone I know who used to work for the company, they do have some basic training on devices but nothing to drastic or taking countless hours to train them.

                    Reps are expected to help with most how to kinds of questions and teach customers when they have questions but off of a larger knowledge base that they have internally. Almost like a complex users manual. These handle most of the questions they get.

                    From these kinds if questions to warranty, T-Mobile don't want to have customers go and deal with the manufacturers because it makes for a more difficult user experience which reflects poorly on them as a provider.

                    They do try to keep the majority of people happy. But they are not going to have hour long training sessions in stores or anything like that either.

                    It becomes a cost vs benefit problem to the levels of questions they field.

                    And things like using kies to synchronize a galaxy phone or with the way BlackBerry used to, they will try and work out the most very basic questions but direct them to the manufacturer for anything more complicated.

              • cesaribenitez95

                @miket you have a lot of good points, But let take a look at a few more things...

                 

                Most manufactures are biscuits, like Huawei.... (I am trying to keep my dinner down as i talk about them)

                     I brought a springboard from t mobile, and the battery went out within a month of me using it. They wanted me to do the following..... Go to a Corporate T-Mobile Store and have the "regional area manger" call them to comfrimed that the device was still within warranty. Then they had to fax over my ID and receipt (which the store/customer care could not print out/fax/mail out for some reason). Then they would email me a RMA a few days of that has been done. Then I have to print it out mail it over seas(which would take about 2 weeks for them to even get) then wait another week as the "repair" the problem, then anther 2 weeks for it to come back and thats if they see that it was still under warranty. So i bascly lost $450 buck. cause of Huawei and tmobile lack of being albe to print out a receipt. So if thats the way that Huawei feels about its customers, i can only imaged how they would do classes

                [side note I do not wish to work on that issue, but t force you're more that welcome to look into it, just I don't care to deal with it anymore]


                Now lets talk about a bigger biscuit APPLE INC.

                     This is coming from someone that used work in apple care......

                     The classes are a joke, and the one on one are a bigger joke!. This is what they just do, keynote sideshow, if you got it great, if you didnt to bad,

                     One on one, (that was a free "perk" for working for them). I notice that my iPhone would not teather via bluetooth from  my HTC amaze 4G to the iphone 4s. But my ipod 4 would. So I thought maybe, just maybe I am doing something wrong... so I went to the apple store and waiting for my "appointment" to be open... I had a rep from one on one see me, the moment that i said tether, the biscuit cut me off and said it was  my amaze. I told him well, all my other devices connect even the ipod... NO! IT'S THE NOT IPHONE ITS PERFECT, ITS YOUR OTHER DEVICE!!!!! and he just keep saying that over and over again. I just walk out. And it turns out that the iphone is just program that way. The one on one mega biscuit could have just said that instead, instead of having a meltdown. just saying.


                So yes I do agree with @miket 100%, the thing is that they just don't know how to talk/treat their customers. T-Mobile does a lot for us, which I am very thankful. I know you guys aren't perfect but at least you guys try.