Part I -The Early Days

When you contact your bank, mortgage company, or the customer service organization of that product you bought but are having difficulty with, is it a pleasant experience? Being a salesman the past 40 years, the last 20 selling technology in the contact center space, I thought I would summarize some of the evolution of this business segment that most people love to hate.

It used to be when you called an organization, a person would answer the phone and you would explain your issue or the information you desired and the person with whom you spoke would either provide you an answer or would call you back. That’s assuming, the organization had a customer service department. Many didn’t. As an example, If you wanted  information regarding your bank account, you went into the branch.

Much of this began to change after the deregulation in the telephone industry almost 30 years ago. That led to the evolution of the telecommunication industry. Up until then, businesses like individuals received all their telephone services directly from the phone company. If an organization added a phone, they obtained it and another line from the phone company. The telecommunications manager was simply the person that ordered the phones.

One of the first technologies to emerge in the customer service space was Interactive Voice Response (IVR). In my next posting I’ll discuss the evolution of IVR, which, although disliked by many, is an extremely useful solution to obtain information and can actually be user friendly if properly designed.

One Response to “Part I -The Early Days”

  1. Hi Ron,

    It’s true…these days you can’t get a real person on the phone to answer your questions. They call this progress. I call it one of the reasons why “Corporate America” is falling apart.
    Companies today have become disconnected with their customers. Everything is all about making profits, instead of looking out for the good welfare of your customers. Happy customers will in turn bring in the profits.
    But companies today can’t seem to see things further than in front of their own noses.
    You have to look at the big picture…this brings in success!
    Thanks for the thought-provoking post!

    Best regards,
    George Nieves

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