As I mentioned yesterday, I had to call Office Depot to report my filing cabinet was damaged on delivery.
I explained my problem to the customer service representative and then was put on hold and waited for several minutes interrupted by the representative asking for forgiveness. She reports that her computer system is not responding and she can’t look up my invoice. I ask to be transferred to another rep but she tells me that everyone is having trouble.
At this point, the woman on the other end of the phone doesn’t really know what to do. She gets my name and invoice number and says unconvincingly that she’ll get this processed when the system comes back up. She adds that I should call back to make sure that my return is being processed. When I hung up the phone, I realized that my problem had not been solved and I had no confidence that it would without another call to customer service.
Do you know what to do when the computer is down?
The more you rely on computers to run your business, the more you need to have a contingency plan for when they are not available. Train your people to still act calmly and assuredly when their system is down. Make sure that the customer issues will be addressed and that the customer is confident that their problem will be solved.
Pen and Paper
When all else fails, go old school and pull out the paper and pen. They worked for hundreds of years and will work for you in a pinch.