PART FIVE — “The Customer Support Review”

The final review-subject in our 6-Blog series involves an activity that many of you don’t realize is even possible. After all, customer support shows its pretty or ugly head sometime after the sale.

And, in many ways, that’s true. Some vendors regard their customer support activities only from a cost control standpoint. They believe that a customer support function is nothing but an expense item. So, they try to put roadblocks between them and the customer in order to delay the inevitable as long as possible in the hope that it will “just go away.”

Unfortunately, far too many training vendors put a “Contact Us” on their website, BUT only provide an e-Mail method of contact — no phone number!

Other vendors place the caller into a voice mail activity, bypassing the customer’s need to get immediate service even though that customer may have a class of learners waiting without a solid internet connection to the purchased courseware.

What can you do during your review process in order to minimize your chances of ending up with one of those non-customer oriented vendors?

Well, you should ask your salesperson for a “number to call” in the event of a problem and an e-Mail address to contact whenever you’re experiencing problems.

Now, run a test. Call the number provided and time how long it takes for them to get back with you. Ditto with the e-Mail address. The answer to those two tests will tell you a lot about the future problems you are going to encounter with that particular vendor.

We all know that technology is not perfect. There will always be hiccups. And, most of us know enough not to expect perfection.

But, it is not too much to expect vendors to treat those imperfections with the care and concern you, their customer, deserve.

Some vendors are truly customer oriented. Find one of those. It will save you a lot of grief.

More on Tuesday – – – – –

— Bill Walton, Founder of ITC Learning