After T-Mobile’s loss of the JD Power Customer Care award and a continuously growing stream of emails regarding unusually long wait times we begin to wonder just what exactly is going on with T-Mobile’s award winning customer service department. Well someone’s ears were ringing as two sources answered our question with a confidential look at what could be to blame. We’ve received two pieces of information that give us at least some form of an answer as to why T-Mobile’s customer service seems to have dropped from the top spot.
The first is related to the above image as T-Mobile has removed the ability to bypass the automated calling system
pass Go and collect $200 instead requiring the customer to input a phone number to properly route the person to the correct place. T-Mobile says it’s taking this step in order to properly route customers and better answer of questions. I say its just another step in ensuring longer wait times by placing customers into a longer queue.
The second is a little more detailed and something we have to be a little more selective on our word choices as we were asked only to post certain things. The short version of the story is that in the past 12 months T-Mobile call centers have seen, in some cases a drastic reduction in staffing, outsourcing and as of late a drop in morale as almost every center believes they are closing when the AT&T deal finalizes. While call volume remains steady, reductions in staffing have lead to very high hold times and a whole lot of customer unhappiness. Our inbox speaks to that. Some call centers have seen reductions in staffing by the hundreds since early this year with some centers looking to further cut staffing as 2011 continues. In fact, some employees responsible for training new employees in the United States call centers are now being sent overseas to handle increases in staffing abroad.
So is T-Mobile looking to downsize ahead of the merger or are they looking to cut costs with outsourced service centers? Either way there is a clear indication that something is going on and there is something behind the recent spat of disappointed loyal T-Mobile customer complaints about lengthy hold times. We’ve begun to really hear a large number of complaints from our readers about call wait times including one reader, Anthony who has tried over the last 5 days just to get someone on the phone and has waited at least 45 minutes each time being unable to do so. Anthony has called from his T-Mobile phone and a desk phone without including his own number.
We’ve been unable to confirm all of the specifics contained within our ninja info but we have no reason to suspect it is incorrect based on the information we are hearing from everyday T-Mobile subscribers who are finding more and more calls being handled by overseas agents. For the moment we are growing increasingly concerned about the direction T-Mobile is headed as we begin the countdown to the AT&T takeover decision. Slowly but surely it looks like the T-Mobile we know and love is becoming the AT&T Death Star, even if the deal doesn’t go through we wonder what a post AT&T takeover talk T-Mobile would look like.