Customer Service gone wrong

Today’s edition of Mumbai Mirror features an article about how someone experienced great customer service at a local Chinese restaurant. Which made me think about a rather poor service offered to me lately.

For about two years now I visited a health clinic to solve some of my allergy issues. This was one of the modern type clinics with a membership plan, a gold membership card, SMS based appointment reminders and the works.

I was happy with the treatment, although their customer service was something which kind of pissed me off quite a few times.

  • It was difficult to re-schedule a missed appointment and it was even more difficult to get through the clinic numbers if you wanted to speak to the doctor directly.
  • The SMS reminders came in after the appointment was already gone by.
  • You could never confirm or cancel appointments by SMS even though I would do just as told in the SMS instruction list.

Anyway, ignoring these as technical issues, I let them go by and because I needed the medicine I made the extra effort and got my stuff done. What took the award in Customer Service at it’s best was this:

In December was my last appointment of the plan. I missed it and since then it’s been almost a month now, I didn’t get my SMS reminder saying I had missed the appointment. Better still, nobody called me to even check if I was interested in renewing the health plan for another year. I really thought they had an efficient call centre taking care of the customers but now I think they were just a mere customer call centre taking care of only the appointment schedules.

If a credit card company or a bank did this – I would never bother. There are too many options in the market and I would go ahead and pick another. But to think of it on medical grounds you tend to build a relationship with the doctor and also a particular medicine works with you – so I expect they are more concerned about their patients and their well-being. Reminding them if they wanted to continue the relationship to help them cure the problem completely. (I had in no way told them that my problem was solved, in fact the doctor had even recommended me to renew the plan for a year more). So I am very surprised what went wrong.

Well, that’s life. The waiter at the Chinese restaurant even remembered the soup the lady ordered every time, whereas my doctor didn’t even call me to know why I was not coming back to them.