This is just a random review of HP customer service as I thought I had an odd experience today.
My current printer died and it’s not worth updating given that it doesn’t have all the groovy features you would expect in 2020. So thought it was about time to buy a new 4 in 1 model. I struggled to find one that is compatible with the latest Mac OSX. HP still seemed to be the best for my needs but I did have a slight trauma in contacting them.
I wanted to find a list of Mojave compatible printers, the HP website had misleading information on that, so I attempted to contact customer support.
- Went onto the HP website to find the Canadian support homepage.
- Called the 1-800 Canadian number
- Got through to a representative very quickly, was pleased about that. I told her what I needed.
- I asked if HP had a list of Mojave compatible Inkjet printers similar to the LaserJet one on the website. She didn’t answer.
- She asked if I was in Canada. I said I was in Vancouver, British Colombia. She then asked again whether I was in Canada. It seemed she didn’t know where British Columbia was.
- I asked if I had been redirected to the US call centre, she didn’t want to answer. Thinking about it now I’m not sure if the rep was based even in North America or even if she worked for HP, maybe an outsourcing company?
- Basically, she had no idea what I was talking about, the call started to deteriorate.
- I decided to end the call as I wasn’t getting anywhere.
It was an extraordinarily odd call. I noticed the rep wanted to adhere very tightly to a script that was most likely on her call centre application.
I managed to reach out to someone on Twitter. They managed to redirect me to a page on their site that had a list of Mojave compatible printers but didn’t list the one I was considering.
The social media person said he didn’t know if it was compatible as there had been a lot of confusion over this issue. Well, the confusion seemed to be mainly with HP. The guy gave me a technical support number to call, I suspect it was in the US.
I called the technical support number as provided.
It was difficult to get through their telephone workflow as it kept wanting to direct me towards the “virtual assistant”. At this stage, I was not patient enough to speak to a computer. The first call was dropped as soon as it redirected me to a human. Sigh. I called again and finally managed to get through to someone.
That call started in an odd way, the rep first asked me for an issue number, I said I didn’t have one. Then she asked me if I was “such and such” person, I said I wasn’t, maybe she was expecting someone to call her back. Finally got to ask her the question I wanted answering and got an immediate “yes it is compatible, via an app in the Apple Store”. She tried to get me to order the printer from her but it would take up to 6 days via a courier and just couldn’t be dealing with that.
Finally got there in the end.
I wrote feedback to HP about the above so they were aware of the process in getting an answer to a question stating that it shouldn’t have taken that long.
I was impressed with an immediate call back soon after I write that email. That was nice of them.
The final step was buying the printer which we did from a very hard salesperson in Staples Canada, that was a bit troublesome too.
I bought an HP OfficeJet Pro 9015. I got it fixed up at home and it works perfectly with Mojave, as they said, via the app.
Some features I like about the printer:
- Nice bright design
- Easy to read/touch front panel
- Duplex printing and scanning. Two-sided scanning is a huge bonus for me.
- Mobile friendly
Some bad points:
- Seems a little noisy when printing
- Doesn’t do larger size paper formats
Every now and again I will write about good and bad customer service issues, today I’m sharing a story about UPS.
I ordered some furniture from Wayfair Canada. My friends rave about them especially those who work in Real Estate as they feel this is a great method of ordering items to prepare a property for sale. Before I get onto my experience with UPS I will start with the positive about Wayfair:
- They have a lot of choice on their website, high end and budget items
- Ordering was easy, a few clicks and it was done
- Unlike other companies, I wasn’t bombarded with emails after the order was complete
- Their customer service is pretty amazing
Wayfair uses different courier companies depending on what you are ordering, for the item I ordered, pictured, they used UPS. This is what Wayfair and myself went through with UPS.
- Supposed to deliver on Tuesday 15th October
- After waiting at home all day UPS pinged me a tracking update to say my address didn’t exist.
- I phoned UPS who had all the correct details. They said they didn’t have a name but seconds later contradicted themselves saying they did have it.
- They promised they would re-deliver the item on Thursday 17th October
- I called Wayfair to provide feedback at this point, they were kind enough to put me on hold while they contacted UPS. UPS also promised Wayfair the package would be delivered on 17th October.
- So 17th October came along, I waited in for a good portion of the day and didn’t see any tracking updates so I called them.
- After a challenging 45 minutes on the phone, UPS said they had lost the package and had to “open an investigation”, whatever that means.
- I called Wayfair again and they were kind enough to offer me a refund, which I accepted.
- I sent UPS a message through their website to ask them to return the package to Wayfair should they ever find it.
I looked up the UPS Depot who should have delivered the item which is in Delta, British Columbia. The reviews on the Yellow Pages website are pretty bad which explains the horror story I’ve been through. When I go to a UPS store for printing or other needs, whether it’s been in Washington DC, Denver CO or Vancouver Canada, the experience has been great, so I’m sad they don’t have the same service levels in their delivery branch.
Sorting this out consumed a lot of my time which was quite draining. Wayfair did everything they can to resolve the issue but UPS performance was obviously out of their control. So I will buy an alternative product at one of the local furniture stores here in the lower mainland. I’m sad as I was looking forward to doing business with Wayfair.
Every year I appear to have more than one trauma dealing with customer service departments of various companies, mainly blue chip in size. Whenever I approach a company it is for fairly basic and reasonable requests, shouldn’t be out of the ordinary, but they do appear to have many issues dealing with them.
Here is how I have handled customer service queries in the past, these are my expecations on how I should be treated.
- Thank the customer for reporting the issue
Often you can learn something from the customer, about a gap in the product or service levels, as they really are your best asset in finding bugs. So, be thankful, show empathy, apologise, and of course professional.
If the issue cannot be dealt with immediately agree a turnaround time with the customer. A customer doesn’t like to be kept in the dark so it’s also important to continue to touch base with them during the process. I find it useful to have an online system where I can look up ongoing isses and their status.
- Deal with the issue
Either deal with the issue or escalate it to a subject matter expert within the organization, but keep an eye on it to ensure it’s not forgotten.
- Sign Off
Get back to the customer to thank them for reporting the issue and let them know it’s resolved BUT ensure they are happy that it has been sorted.
- Product or Service Enhancement
If there is an error in your product or service ensure that it’s added to a roadmap for a fix, if it can’t be fixed immediately. Getting it fixed will limit other customers having to call in and the bug can be marketed to say your company is on top of product development.
- CRM and Data
Personally, I use a CRM (SuiteCRM) to register all issues for which I can pull of useful data ie 1) reports of open/closed issues, 2) current or past bugs, 3) time spent, and so on.
If I can keep to this basic workflow so can other small businesses and especially larger companies, I don’t think I’m asking for too much.
It’s been another bumper year with bad experiences with customer service departments, which I will be reporting on soon.