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Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

Quaero
Newbie
Posts: 2
Registered: 01-04-2014

Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

I am a member of Which? and chose plus.net based on the Which recommendations. Along with many other businesses everything is fine until you have a problem and need support to get it fixed.
I telephoned today and received a message that call waiting times were 15 minutes. To ask your customers to hang around for 15 minutes waiting for your under resourced customer services to answer is not acceptable. Ensuring that your customers can speak to you promptly and without hassle is fundamental to providing quality customer services. We customers know the reasons for poor service don't we? It is not to do with the tired old excuse of "we are experiencing large call volumes" but simply, we do not want to spend the money on providing a quality service. I accept that you cannot have cheap prices and top of the range service but this is where the skill of managing quality systems comes into play and there are many companies that excel at getting the balance correct.
Of course, plus.net is a subsidary of BT who provide some of the worst customer service experiences I have ever had the misfortune to deal with. I really hope that plus.net are not being tainted by the standards of their owners and being pressurised into profits first, customers second.
So please plus.net, get to grips with answering your phone because I am getting fed up with the continuing faulty telephone line and snail pace broadband.
12 REPLIES
198kHz
All Star
Posts: 3,358
Thanks: 341
Fixes: 9
Registered: 30-07-2008

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

Welcome to the forum.   Smiley
It's not acceptable, of course, and to my mind neither is 5 minutes.
If waiting times are down to 15 minutes then, compared to recent experience, things are improving rapidly. Recent waiting times (actual - not predicted) have been typically 30 to 60 minutes.
There has been news lately of a new call centre opening up in Leeds; no doubt someone will be along shortly to confirm whether or not that is operational.
Once you do get through, I'm sure you will find that the support is very good.
Remember you are unique - just like everyone else
Plusnet Staff
Plusnet Staff
Posts: 6,346
Thanks: 31
Fixes: 5
Registered: 26-11-2011

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

Thanks for your feedback.
Our call wait times have reduced significantly over the past 3 months from some wait times being at the 45 minute mark and we're now down to around 10-15 minutes.
We've by no means given up and believe that this is where we think we should be, there's still work to do. Our second site is functional, over in Leeds. We're going to keep on driving to bring the call wait times down as much as we can.
I'm sorry it's caused you inconvenience.
Chris Pettitt
Cloud Environments Engineer
Mayfly
Pro
Posts: 1,127
Thanks: 100
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-06-2009

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

Well I have to be honest and say the longest I have never waited I believe was 15 mins - yesterday for instance the chart on the website said 11 minutes and the recorded message said 15 mins wait  but in fact my call was answered in 4 mins and that was at lunch time. So it appears the times have significantly reduced since the start of the year.
PN is it pot luck as to whether you are connected to Sheffield or Leeds? and do the times for the 2 call centres differ significantly?
Plusnet Staff
Plusnet Staff
Posts: 6,346
Thanks: 31
Fixes: 5
Registered: 26-11-2011

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

The calls are routed across the two sites evenly depending on the amount of available call takers on site.
Not all departments are at our Leeds Site so you may be routed to Sheffield if you want to speak to our Faults Team for example.
Chris Pettitt
Cloud Environments Engineer
Quaero
Newbie
Posts: 2
Registered: 01-04-2014

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

I am grateful for the responses and to know that plus.net are improving their call waiting times. I agree with Foresee that even 5 minutes is not acceptable. I come from a technical service role within industry and the company target time to answer a call was within two rings! I am pleased to say that plus.net appear to have now resolved my broadband problem and I have no quibble with their technical  support. I hope they aim for zero waiting time and become the industry standard for best practice.
abstruse21
Grafter
Posts: 80
Registered: 28-03-2014

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

Over the past 2 months i have typically waited 8-35 minutes. The average being around 15. That said i have hung up numerous times when told there is a 30 minute wait so that will have reduced the average a fair bit.
It would help if didnt have to ring them between 2 and 4 times a week of course chasing up when my service might actually become live..
And no, these waiting times are far from acceptable.
Petard
Rising Star
Posts: 140
Thanks: 23
Registered: 22-08-2011

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

I was told recently by a PN rep that the recorded announcement you hear of how long you'll have to wait is set up manually. I had assumed it was an automatic thing and reflected the instantaneous length of the queue. Not so, apparently. In the event the announcement was hugely pessimistic, and my call was answered in a few minutes. So don't let the announcement put you off holding!
leelee
Newbie
Posts: 1
Registered: 04-04-2014

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

absolute joke,was informed by the recorded message that there would be a 30 min wait,i had to give up after 40 mins due to the battery on my house phone bleeping warning me that the battery was low on charge,terrible response time,this is at 11pm not exactly a peak time is itHuh?
Mayfly
Pro
Posts: 1,127
Thanks: 100
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-06-2009

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

You can check the wait times here...
http://portal.plus.net/supportpages.html?a=212
note it is updated every 15mins.
anniesboy
Grafter
Posts: 385
Thanks: 2
Registered: 06-01-2011

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

The waiting time is still very poor,  I have suggested (referred) friends to Plusnet in the past ,  I now do so but add the caveat regarding the phone wait if you need to contact support.
This is the wait now
Residential call stats
Current calls waiting Longest call waiting now Average answer time today
9.49 39 minutes and 40 seconds 39 minutes and 42 seconds
Last updated: April 5, 2014, 8:05 am
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,664
Thanks: 763
Fixes: 1
Registered: 23-09-2010

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

Frankly I think the only reason most new users hang on the phone line all that time is because they've signed a contract.
If it wasn't for that I think many, if not all, would leave plusnet after the first interminable wait or failed appointment.
Maybe if that was the case things would not only have to improve, someone at plusnet would finally need to get serious with their suppliers nonchalant service.
anniesboy
Grafter
Posts: 385
Thanks: 2
Registered: 06-01-2011

Re: Can 15 minutes to answer a telephone be acceptable?

Crikey everybody must be still watching The Grand National.As wait is now
Residential call stats
Current calls waiting Longest call waiting now Average answer time today
0.00 0 seconds 2 seconds
Last updated: April 5, 2014, 5:20 pm