Nokia Care–Teaching lesson to service industry since years

All of us know that what all those customers visiting Care/Service Centers have in common;

They all do visit if the product is not functioning properly, repeat problems or in certain cases they are negative towards the company itself.

When you look at things in this way (specially the last point), then it becomes very important for companies to curate a top class Care/ Service Center experience to tackle the aggressions and disappointments of consumers.

As customer experience and customer service increasingly become a strategic priority for companies looking to differentiate themselves, most of them are realizing that some of their consumer interactions (face to face or contact centers) represent more than just costs; they’re moments of truth for customers, points in time that significantly impact customer loyalty.


If we sit back and recall our last Service Center experiences, then I am sure that we can sure remember one of those worse ones a few years back and we can sure remember that how we talked about those experiences with our friends. It clearly shows that much important Customer Care is. Are companies really doing something about it now in recent years?

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Luckily, I got a chance to visit and see the process followed by Nokia Care Centers in general and would like to share the same with you so that you can understand that why Nokia remains consumer’s favourite.


Nokia Care: the process

As about the looks and process inside a Service Center, it changes as per the user base and type of handsets change city by city, area by area, time by time, so its not exactly possible to keep each Service Center in the same way as a metropolitan city would have. Yes! there might be alterations in minute details in comparison but more or less, Nokia Care Centres catch the consumer eye. They are easy to locate & give a comfortable feeling once you enter. The basic amenities like seating space, air-conditioning, cleanliness, decent branding are common to all Nokia Care Canters.

Let me now share the different elements of a Nokia Care Center:

  1. The reception:

    The reception in a traditional Nokia Care Center has been replaced by a Token System that generates token on the basis of task category & also sends this information to Care Center manager. You get a touch based, ATM like looking token machine with different task categories from which customer can select the relevant option.

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    As you can see, this system removes the middle man carrying up your tokens and subsequent order no. The new system is very transparent in its functions. While the centralized reporting helps Nokia in further improvements, but it also improves the turnaround time with per call. DSC05199Along with token, you also needed to fill Customer Information Slip for record purpose, so that Nokia may contact you about your experience if required.

  2. Waiting area: Comfortable seating at the Waiting area makes it relaxing. An LCD TV is showing the latest Nokia promotions about products as well as valuable Consumer Information like (Do’s & Don’ts, Consumer Awareness initiatives like Recycle etc.). Another LCD displays token allotment and also the average waiting time.
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  3. Monitoring and tracking the tokens: It sounds too good to be true but gone are those days when you were needed to sit for long in Nokia Care Centers to get your number. While efforts are made to attend to customer at the earliest, in case any customer is waiting for long, the Center manager would attend to the customer himself. The company monitors the Average Waiting Time centrally to take corrective actions.
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  4. Product & Accessory Display: One thing that has always been part of a Nokia Care Center and that is Accessory Display. It’s still the same though Nokia Care Centers in certain cities might have the latest products on display too.

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  5. Service Desks: The number of service desks depends on the location & number of customers visiting the Care Center and the one that I visited was at Delhi, it had larger number of desks.

    DSC05208The Service desks are not only equipped with common accessories like covers, headphones etc. but also keep catalogue of protection plans as well.

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    Like the one, you see here, Nokia Care Protect plans extends your warranty for 12 months more (Obviously after inspecting your device once and if found perfectly fine), which will be exactly same as the normal warranty. Unfortunately, only those users that are covered in warranty can enjoy this benefit, not the one who are left with expired warranty.

  6. Technical Desks: Not all the issues are as simple that one expert can solve without doing dirty things like opening your device or opening screws within mins, so all the cases that require further work beyond just an expert inspection, will go into technical section.

    Obviously consumers are not allowed to enter into technical section as it requires some form of Electrostatic Discharge (ESD) protection, though all such technical desks  will always have a transparent glass front. Logic behind the transparent glasses is, people out there can have a view if the technical desk want to show them the exact problem with their handsets.

     
  7. Feedback Section: I am not sure if I would have come across a cute feedback section like this in some Service Center. It was pleasing to see the openness & transparency at Nokia Care Centers to collect customer feedback.

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    And more better is, this is not just namesake. Put a negative feedback and you can be assured that someone will personally meet you or call you about that feedback.

  8. Collection Counter: Obviously not all issues can be resolved within mins or even in hours, many a times, you need to come to Care Center on a later date, just for the collection purpose. Obviously, it doesn’t make sense to put a customer coming for collection into the same queue as of people with complaint. Obviously, a separate desk for collection.
  9. Accessory Replacement: Nokia Care Centers maintains a stock of commonly used accessories batteries, headphones etc. Let me remind you, you will never get a repair of headphones and batteries in case of Nokia as such items get instantly replaced with a new one rather than doing some ad-hoc solution (obviously when in warranty).. 

    Nokia ensures adequate stock in all Care Centers to avoid disappointed customers coming for service. The stock in Nokia Care Center varies as per patterns of consumers visited there.

  10. Internal Training & skill enhancements: We were very excited to know if those technical desk people were given chance of having hands on over latest upcoming gadgets before the marketSmile with tongue outNokia keeps on training each one of them about handsets throughout the year.
  11. Outcall to customers about their experiences: This is another feat that Nokia seems to have adopted from the best practices of service industry. Random calls to Customer to know if they have been satisfied with their experience with Nokia Care Center. Also if they have any suggestion in mind for further improvements. All of such calls get well documented and forwarded to concerned authorities for further decisions if required.

So, this pretty much sums up what a Nokia Care look like and functions like. When I was asked, for me it was actually hard to come up with a suggestion to bring further improvement.

Do you find the process good enough or do you have some of your own suggestions? Do you have any good or bad experiences with Nokia Care recently? Please share them with me, I hope you will be listened by right ears.

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Nokia Care – Irresponsible staff costs goodwill

Today, February 5, 2010 … was the day, when I finally packed up Trial Device Nokia N900 to be sent back to Womworld, London, I was supposed to be talking about my experiences with unexpected offer, was thinking to write about such marketing and customer gaining strategies, started to think Nokia along with Google as one of innovative giants or more importantly was supposed to be enjoying party somewhere as one of my colleague Arjun just became father and we were in great joy for that, but ….. my day was bad.


First the mess-up started with DHL (though it wasn’t their fault either, but still) I already mentioned that last time the DHL guy delivered the shipment without my signature or receipt and this time, they were supposed to follow each and every minute details without even try to help me out in place.

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First problem was price as Indian Rules requires some additional formalities, if you declare price of shipment more than Rs. 25, 000/- (which was my case 500 Euro). This was sorted out by Womworld, when they changed the invoice to present the price 300 Euro now.

Second problem arrived at day next, when I was ready with new invoice. Now, they asked for full details of shipments (like what’s inside the box, how many chargers, cables etc), while this was not mentioned there in original shipment. I asked the guy to stay a little before I could change the invoice, but he said other person will pick the same. Good!!! No patience for little formality. Nice service.

Third problem, new DHL guy arrived at 5:18 PM, when I was supposed to leave office early by 5PM to pick my Nokia N82 from Nokia Care (Actual story the post is about), then he said no mention of Sender’s address over invoice. I said what?? ok .. let me make another one and I have to send it now, no second time. He agreed with address written by pen. Thanks a lot!!! then he wished to open the packed shipment to check. Ok!! fair enough, opened the tapes/ packing, then repacked it. Well!!! Finally…


Actual mess up with Nokia Care; the pathetic one!!!

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Must been around May 2009, it was under last few months of warranty (purchase in first week of August 2008, if I remember right), but was returned back from Nokia care saying that they do not cover liquid damage. Fair enough!!! They were unable to tell cost of repair and also said that its not promised that device will come back in same condition after opening it. I was irritated then and took the device back that I don’t wanna repair now. This was not that bad then the red led light in back was always on and flash was not working.

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Later things got more worse as loud speakers stopped working and keyboard got loose due to my mishandling (could say). Finally, by this year, I decided that either this get repaired or whatever. Bought Nokia 5800 and sent N82 for repair on February 18, 2010. Meanwhile on February 19, 2010, got Nokia N900 as trial for two weeks. Story got twisted when I lost my Nokia 5800 before just going to home, where I was supposed to give my other handset Nokia 5130 to Mom. No issue, I thought.. Nokia N900 was with me and N82 was supposed to be back easily in two weeks max.

March 5, 2010, after many follow ups, got news that set is repaired and I could pick it.

You know office timings and Nokia care is near my room which is at one hour distance from office. Means today was on a brick, Nokia care was supposed to be closed by 6:30 PM and I was waiting in office for DHL Somehow made to reach in time at Nokia care (don’t forget, was to visit ATM as Nokia care doesn’t accept Cards).


Check the Job Sheet, what were the major complaint?

question

Application Sound? !!!! Not repaired !!!!
Damaged Keyboard? !!!!
Not repaired !!!!
Firmware update? !!!! Not done !!!! Not mentioned in job sheet even when I specifically mentioned
Camera’s Xeon Flash? !!!! Not repaired !!!! Not mentioned in job sheet even when I specifically mentioned, after all its special about N82.


Do you know only complaint they resolved was the red led light in back always ON .. nothing else. Hanging, reboot etc. was all absurd, I never asked anything like that. And the cost they assumed me to pay was Rs.3850/-

For what??? I asked.. tell me specific details for what I am being charged?? What took two weeks to you in doing this??

Moreover, who updates tracking status? Formality to show that work done/ call closed?

track They took the device back from me saying that will be repaired this time. Great!!! No smart phone with me now (last N900 gone and 5130 with Mom), I am not connected from home as it was only means now days. NO blogging from home 😦

Next delivery date is February 9, 2010. How many of you think that Nokia care will make it????