good customer service is solving problems

A Tale of Two Student Loan Services: Solve My Problem, Don’t Tell Me My Problem.

Well, it’s tax time again. Fun? Absolutely…but of course only if you’re getting money back. Which, thankfully, I am. Unfortunately there’s a roadblock as I haven’t yet gotten everything I need to do them. Let the phone calls begin – BC Student Loan Service Bureau (BCSL) and the National Student Loans Service Centre (NSL).

THE ORDER:
Paying your student loan is an automatic thing –  Pay monthly, tell when I’m done. I’d had very little contact with both service centres beyond the odd address change. I called and thankfully only needed my social insurance number to get through (phew). I spoke with both and each explained that the address I had had come back “invalid” but they would resend my tax information. Fingers crossed that this was the case.

THE SERVICE:
When I spoke to the BCSL service desk, I knew that the tax receipt hadn’t made it to me. It was the reason I had called. Did that stop her from repeating back to me, “Your address is invalid” twice? Nope. Did she have the right address? Yes she did. So why tell me what I already know?

When I call customer service, I’m looking for a problem to be solved. I’m not looking for my problem to be told back to me. I’m looking for you to fix it. (that’s a lot of “looking”). Now I can understand if she was trying to confirm what the problem was but we had already established she had my correct address. Instead, the operator felt parroting back my problem to me was a suitable end to the conversation. I’m not blaming them for the mail not getting to me, but I do blame them for their response when I tried to find a resolution.

In comparison, I spoke to the National Student Loans Service Centre with the same problem (correct address but information wasn’t reaching me). He was great. He understood that there was obviously a problem getting me my information and that it might happen again so he problem solved. Yes, I said it. PROBLEM SOLVED. He gave me the amount I could claim and said that if my accountant/tax person wasn’t sure, they could call the service centre for confirmation. Oh, and he also was going to have the tax receipt resent just in case. Listen, solution, satisfaction.

STUDENT LOAND SERVICES Conclusion:

BCSL: Friend Zone – I just don’t like you in “that way.” Let’s just say I’m glad I don’t have a reason to contact you again. This relationship was as acquaintances at best so I’m perfectly fine with it drifting to strangers. Sorry, communication is a little too important for me to try to establish a strong relationship.

NSL: Going steady – This could be the beginning of something major. We talked. We laughed. We had fun. Together we overcame obstacles. I’m looking forward to talking again. Would you like to meet my friends?

Service Rating System:

Friend Zone – I just don’t like you in “that way.”
Booty Call – If I don’t have anything else better going on, I’ll stop by.
2nd Date – I’ll give you a second chance.
Going steady – This could be the beginning of something major.

 

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