Telstra Automates Big Pond Support Line

BigPondLogo.jpgCompanies might be happy to ring you in the middle of dinner, but they're noticeably less keen to make it easy for you to call them. At APC, Dan Warne reports that Telstra is about to shift most of its BigPond support centre to the Philippines, and is adding a interactive voice recognition (IVR) troubleshooting system you have to navigate before reaching a real person. Based on the sample call provided in the story, it doesn't work very well, but these kind of approaches are becoming more common. (I had a similarly frustrating experience with Vodafone's 'Lara' recently, and it ultimately diverted me to the wrong division anyway.) Are you happy to deal with IVR services if they get the job done more quickly, or are they just another pain in the neck? How could they be improved? Speak out in the comments. If you don't want to deal with a call centre, you could always try BigPond support via Twitter.


Comments

    I have had my battles with telstra and their Bigpond quite a few times. Hopefully they 'upgrade' themself now to an international standard.

    I've actually used this "service" to setup a wireless service on a mac for a friend. To say that it was annoying, pointless, useless, time consuming, setup to fail and verging on "criminal" would be understating it. Yhe system wanted me to start from scratch (fair enough I suppose except that wasn't my issue!) and I needed to choose the modem from a list they offered. Despite my friend being supplied BY BIGPOND with a wireless router branded by Telstra/Bigpond it was NOT ON THE LIST, consequently it was impossible to proceed beyond the first step! There was no way around it. Prior experience with these outrageous automated services suggested that I would soon default to a human being (but most wouldn't know that). Well I was wrong too! It wasn't soon. I lost count but it took at least 12 attempts and failures to not choose one of the options to get out of the horror-go-round and then I was put through to the wrong human section!
    What is going on here? We pay them for a rather expensive service and get this disgusting treatment. Shame shame shame.

    If by "upgrade" you mean complete disaster you're on the right track. I work in technical support in Sydney and we are able to monitor calls from "The Bridge" which we basically have access to the global call network from and believe me so far the philippines centres are light years behind us in service and technical knowledge.

    Lara is being a bi**h this morning. She keeps hanging up on me!

    The only Voice Recognition service that is anything at all reasonable is Centrelink. But even then you can simply divert to Operator.. Telstras BPs idea of having to go through the VR first , is quite simply a PAIN.. Pay premium service and you get premium garbage..
    I am gradually moving all my services to Operator Serviced Companies. ie Internode and the likes..

    I find these IVR prompts frustrating. Most times I've dealt with them they ask me every question under the sun and then when I get to the real person, the information i just gave hasn't transferred through to the person who answers my call so I have to give it all again!!

    So annoying!

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