Here at Buckingham Insurance we believe that customer service is the foundation in which our company was built.
But how do companies get away with poor customer service?
A Forbes (2014) analysis found that:
- Customer service scores has no relevance to stock market returns
- The most hated companies actually perform better than their loved counterparts
This may seem strange but it makes sense. Obviously the amount of competition in the marketplace plays a big factor. But a lot of it comes down to customers not holding these companies accountable. Many of us are guilty of it.
Take a recent experience I had. I had rented an apartment from a company in Sheffield and, despite having some misgivings about the service, had no reason to complain, as I had accepted it how I saw it. It was only after moving out that the trouble started. After texting and emailing my letting agent multiple times to arrange my keys handed in, he called me at 11 am on a Sunday demanding the keys back “in 5 minutes”. Then, after a few of the rudest phone calls I have ever received, he agreed to drive down to collect them – egged on by the angry tenants who were meant to move in that day. They had also not lodged my deposit with the DPS so despite him admitting over the phone my room was in excellent condition, my deposit was, and still is, in their hands. After looking on Facebook I saw hundreds of reviews confirming my experience.
The moral of my story is to always do your research and don’t take the risk! Obviously I made the same mistake: I should have done my research on the company rather than trusting my initial judgement. When I looked round the apartment, it seemed nice enough although expensive. And because I desperately needed a place to live I made a snap judgement. It would have taken me 5 minutes to look this company up online – in the age of digital connection we have no excuse not to research who we give our custom to.
Even one horror story review should ring alarm bells and prompt you to ask questions. Particularly with service industries such as insurance (or letting agents) where you wouldn’t necessarily notice bad service up until you need them – i.e. when coming up for renewal, changing a car or making a claim.
Because of the bad reviews I was confused how this company seemed to be doing well, and actually flourishing! Again, it all comes down to accountability. Don’t let companies get away with providing poor service and hold them to the standards you would expect. Remember online reviews are the currency of the internet. If you have had a good or a bad experience then don’t let it go unsaid.
Saying that, while technology has greatly increased transparency in companies it also massively contributes to a lack of customer service. Don’t trust a completely automated company. Technology increases convenience but destroys relationships where trust is key. While technology has given us multiple channels to do business, watch out for companies where technology takes precedent over human interaction. We see this problem all the time in the insurance industry – people filling out forms online nearly always run into problems because an online form can never get a full feeling for you or your business. Those face to face relationships and trust building are still so important in the industry, and our trust is proven with the amount of customers that have stayed with us throughout the years.
If you have had a good experience with us then make sure you leave us a review on Trustpilot here – we’d really appreciate it.