I have been a customer of Telstra for a while, and there’s a reason for that – they have always proven to be the best of a bad bunch. Recently, however, I have had to contact them a few times on separate occasions due to some excessive mobile broadband changes. Every time I turned on my mobile WiFi I received multiple messages informing me that I had exceeded my data limit and that an additional 1GB would be added for $10.
I didn’t use the device that often but I had 28 of these messages during the month, hence my shock. I contacted Telstra via their online chat and was unequivocally told the excess data charge messages were a mistake and I wouldn’t be billed. That seems like it would be the end of the story, however, I then found out this week that I had been charged. In fact, my account had been debited $405 which represents $315 of excess data charges on top of my $90 monthly plan.
I then contacted Telstra again and after being redirected twice I managed to speak with the right department who told me the charges were genuine and nothing could be done. I spent 52 minutes talking to an operator and holding while she talked to her supervisor yet I didn’t get anywhere. When I questioned why the previous person told me the charges were a mistake and I wouldn’t be charged, they asked for a reference number. The good news is I have an email version of the transcript yet for some reason Telstra do not have reference numbers of their transcripts for online chats, so I offered to email the transcript to the operator only to be told that they can’t accept emails, which seems a bit old school.
The outcome is, that if I want to obtain any form of a refund, I have to print the transcript and drive to a Telstra store so they can see if it’s genuine and call the same team I was talking too on the phone to confirm that the transcript is authentic. Surely in 2018 there is an easier way to help your customers or at least understand their frustration to improve services moving forward.
So, what would be a more favourable solution and could my experience with Telstra change if there were better customer service strategies put in place? Customers are more likely to remain loyal to brands that offer great customer service and are willing to go the extra mile to ensure a great customer experience. Current trends dictate that companies who don’t focus on customer service and a wonderful customer experience will lose its competitive edge. In a society where customer service means everything and online reviews make or break a business, will this mean large companies that don’t focus on great customer service will eventually lose their place as leaders in their industry?
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