OSS Key to Customer Service

Customer service in the telecom industry, in recent years, has fallen to an all time low. With companies providing poor service, some off-shoring all service and a few having no service at all it’s no wonder that the industry is reaching to find ways to draw customers back. We’ve always held that effective OSS and BSS can be customer retainers. Seem other folks think so also.

Customer Service leverages OSS & BSS

A site we follow has published an interesting read on the connection between systems and improving customer service. You can check it out at Telesperience. The article clearly covers the territory that relates underlying support systems to the customer experience.

Some more for the list

In addition to the areas mentioned in the article there are a few items that need some further consideration.

“OSS is operations, it’s not really relevant,” said one guy I spoke to recently when we were talking customer experience. I’ve had this same argument so many times recently I thought I’d write a little piece explaining why, if you’re serious about your customer experience, you just have to look long and hard at your OSS.

Teresa Cottam

The three areas we believe that carriers fall short of leveraging their value to customers is;

  1. Order Management—in many cases orders are not managed as a continuous flow. Updates are lacking, information is missing and the result is a missed commitment leading to a poor customer service experience. A small number of great OSS companies provide an overarching process flow for orders that telecoms should adopt.
  2. Service Representative Flexibility—In many cases service reps have access to your customer information ONLY while you are on the call. For us this routinely happens on service calls. This is patently stupid and leads to much wasted time for a customer. Is it that hard to allow a representative to take down the call information, complete the research, fix the problem and then call the customer back?
  3. Clear Display of Service Costs—In more than one instance, in the process of requesting service changes, we have discovered that the service rep, and our own information from the carrier’s web site, did not provide any clear delineation of service charges. In at least three times this year we requested a particular service, were provided with a service charge, and had the service activated. Later we found that the service charges were wrong, and in one instance the service conflicted with another on our plan. These were resolved after numerous hours on the phone (see item 2) above.

So what’s your opinion? Is customer service improved by good support systems?

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