Archive for July, 2014

Customer Service

Posted: July 28, 2014 in Uncategorized

I don’t like talking to people.  I know this is odd coming from a psychologist, but I really like that much of what I need in the world can be found online with a few button clicks.  Last year when I bought my new car, I was able to purchase car insurance in about 5 minutes online. I just got my renewal in the mail and it is higher than I excepted so I decided to shop around.  I figured since I bought insurance in 5 minutes, surely I could get a few quotes in that time.  There is a company here called Youi that is constantly advertising their ability save EVERYONE money.  So I tried them first.  I went through the 5 minutes of online questions and clicked on “Get Quote”.

I have to admit it is probably kind of sad how excited I was at this point – curious to know how much I would be saving.  I mean, on the commercial, they saved Sophie over $900/year!  And my insurance isn’t even that much now! Maybe my insurance would be free!

You can imagine my disappointment when what came up was:

“Grab your phone!  You are one of our preferred customers and one of our representatives is going to call you right now.”


So yes, someone called and proceeded to tell me what a great company they are and asked the EXACT SAME QUESTIONS I had just answered online. The fast talking, annoyingly mumbling call centre worker asked if I would proceed if I found their quote acceptable.  I said:


She laughed and asked why maybe.  She seemed genuinely surprised when I said that this phone call was a pointless and irritating waste of time.  She then proceeded to waste even more of my time explaining how this is customer service and how all of their customers appreciated that by asking more questions than other companies, they are able to tailor their insurance to the specific client and save them money by doing so.

What she should have said was “Ok, let’s get this over as quickly as possible and get you that quote you were looking for”.  That would be serving THIS customer.

Many years ago I worked for The Bay, a big department store in Canada.  They had a customer service plan that involved asking customers if there was anything else they needed and trying to sell them other products related to their purchase.  That is NOT customer service.  That is BAY service.  And that is fine – you’re a company that is out to make money – but DO NOT try to sell me something and say it is for MY service.  I’m not a moron.  And it is insulting to try to fob off your gain for mine.

So back you Youi, the call centre lady then asked the compliance questions that every insurance company asks – are you a criminal, have you had an accident, have you made a claim blah blah blah.  All of these could have been asked online (indeed they were when I bought my insurance online last year).  Why on earth did they need to be asked in person?  Does the call centre person have super powers to detect lying?

Not one of the questions they asked seemed different from what any other company asks.  Any modifications to the car? How is the car used? Where is the car kept?  Everyone asks these questions.  Does this company even know what their competitors do?

While the computer churned out my quote, the call centre lady again regaled me with advantages for choosing Youi.  It had now been ages since I started the quote process online – Just give me the damn quote!!!

$50 more than my current company.

You have GOT to be kidding me!!! The woman was ready to sign me up.  I opened my current policy to confirm.  How can this be?!  Sophie saved over $900 a year.  Where the hell was she getting her car insurance before?  The Royal Diamond Studded Insurance Company for Stupid Rich People???

I told the lady her quote was more than my current policy and that I would be staying where I was.  I heard her call my name as I hung up.

Sorry, but you’re not serving this customer.