A New Kind of Customer Service

Posted: April 7, 2011

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Recently, I ordered a replacement control panel for the front of my dishwasher.  The parts replacement website did have a disclaimer that said, “Manufacturer authorized substitution:  XXXX may differ in appearance, but is a functional equivalent to prior part XXXX.” Imagine my surprise when I opened the package to find a black control panel for my white dishwasher.  The website made no mention of the color of the part.

I knew I would have to call customer service where I would probably enter recorded message purgatory, get put on hold while someone reviews my file, get switched to one or more other departments and then have to leave a message for someone to call me back.  I set aside about thirty minutes to make this call in order to return the part for replacement.

Within the second ring to the manufacturer, I was greeted by a live female who simply asked a few questions, processed the refund, ordered the replacement part and included the coupon code I had used originally.  The customer service representative also offered free shipping for the return part and for the new order.  She swiftly took care of all of this in about five minutes.  I did not have to repeat my name, address, email, phone number, order number, reason for my call and was not put on hold even once.   Then she said, “Have I provided you with excellent service?”  My reply was, “Could you train other people to do what you just did for me?”

As part of my job, I deal with customer service departments quite frequently.  It shouldn’t surprise us when we actually receive customer service.  It made me wonder, is this the beginning of a new kind of customer service where a company goes out of its way to provide service beyond what anyone would expect?  I certainly hope so.