Time Warner has an interesting client-care strategy

I don’t know about you, but I don’t always look at my bills as I pay them. I just kinda plug numbers into my computer as I’m doing something else.

But yesterday, I actually looked at my Time Warner bill. It had somehow jumped in size. How did that happen? I called them. Here are the dialogues.

The first person – let’s call him Jim – looked at the bill and said, ‘We made some changes to our pricing. Seems you fell out of the loop somehow, and weren’t included. So you ended up being charged retail for what you have in different, and cheaper, packages, and no one fixed this.’

“How long has this been going on?” I asked. ‘Since October. And I can refund you the difference for one month, but not back til October.’  “That is NOT OK with me. I want the whole thing.” At which point he said, ‘It’s not our fault. It’s yours. Don’t you look at your bills?’  To which I replied: “How did I get to be in the wrong? How did it get to be my responsibility when you make changes? Banks and corporations are legally obligated to contact customers to tell them there have been price changes. Why are you leaving the obligation up to me to contact you?”  To which Jim replied: “It’s YOUR responsibility to question US, don’t you think?” At which point I hung up….

When I called back, the woman I spoke with was lovely, although to be fair, she  ‘made nice’ to me so nicely that I ended up getting a small sum back ($44) instead of the whole thing ($120) and I somehow didn’t notice.

I called, saying I wanted a supervisor. She said she’d take care of me, and I strongly resisted. I told her to read the files, which she did. “Looks like you hung up on a rep when he told you what your bill was.”

Then I got annoyed. “I suppose anyone can skewer a situation to make it look like they are right. Let me speak with a supervisor so I don’t be angry with you. I am quite annoyed with the way Time Warner is handling me and how they are handling my account.”

She promised to help and get a supervisor if necessary. She sounded very reassuring. I calmed down and told her the situation. She looked around, said I was owed $11/month and she could write me a check for $44. She also said that if she played with my services, she could get the package down to a savings of $30/month (See? I was so happy at that point that I failed to realize that that was what the first guy told me and couldn’t send me money for.).

She calmed me down, made sure she took care of me, and saved me money from now on. She was fun, caring, and I ended up taking less money than I would have if I were still angry.

But these folks have had no customer service training. Why? And what is their strategy? What about the techies that I speak with who don’t speak English and who refer me to Microsoft and won’t help with a problem their technology created.

How do we handle these large conglomerates who have spotty client care training, with folks from all around the world who translate the rules differently depending on their country of origin?

Just asking.


2 thoughts on “Time Warner has an interesting client-care strategy”

  1. On my last move, I turned off all my utilities within 30 minutes of calls to the various providers.
    Time Warner, took 16 calls, 12 hours of investment over 2 months of dialog all while they were continuing to bill me. Then when I was living across the country, they insisted that they would not and could not turn off my cable until I flew back and returned their equipment even though a service rep was sent to my house to turn off the cable and recovery the equipment 2 months previously, but forgot. Sharon-Drew if you investigate you will find this company has horrendous customer care. The good news is that it is also inconsistent and you will find some good people if you call enough that may be able to right their corporate wrongs.

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