Occasionally, I get in surreal exchanges with Technical Support people and it is all I can do to keep my composure. The images accompanying this article have nothing to do with the companies I spoke to, but they illustrate ways in which hard work does not serve customer needs.
There seem to be two main problem areas in dealing with Technical Support:
Every piece of data you give him goes through some sort of filter and comes out meaningless to him so he paraphrases what you say.
Using short words and very simple sentences, you can eventually coax the rep to give you useful information, but the experience is not one you wish to repeat.
You usually end up regaling friends with the more absurd parts of the conversation until they are sick of it.
The other area is far more frustrating. You engage in conversation with a customer service rep who seems fairly knowledgeable and you describe your problem in detail and he says, "I’m having a hard time seeing what the problem is. Is there something specific you would like me to look at?"
The problem here is that the rep is thinking like a designer, not like a customer.
The problem I was dealing with today was that a company’s software creates images that are all the same outside dimensions, even if the actual objects are vastly different in size. I have to resize the images I send clients to show how different choices affect the appearance of the final product.
The technical rep could not see why this was necessary. He could not adopt a customer”s viewpoint.
Can you image an auto manufacturer showing product image comparisons where their sport cars were the same size as their heavy duty trucks? That’s what this software package is currently doing. It needs to be modified to convey a better idea of what it is producing.
Designers making life easier for designers is not the way to win customer loyalty. Understanding customer needs is critical to survival in a competitive marketplace.