#Opinion: Zim Mobile Operators, A Testimony of Customer Care Gone Bad

An old adage, now a cliché goes “Customer is King”, something most mobile network operators’ call centres seem to have forgotten.

Getting a response from customer care agents working for these telecom companies is a mammoth task not for the faint hearted.

By Marvelous Chibagidi 

The essence of patience being a virtue loses value whenever one tries calling these customer care agents.

On the other end of the line, a voice that lasts a 30 minute trip parrots, “Our customer services representatives are currently busy, please keep holding.”

This is how laid back our MNO call centres are with Econet Wireless being a major culprit.

Since I started using a mobile phone,  I have had very few times that I could actually stand and applaud the mobile telecommunications  companies for a highly active and quick to response customer care line.

This is regarding Econet, Telecel and Netone and I stand strong with my opinion as I have been a subscriber to all the mentioned networks. I could argue that mostly Econet response is the most delayed for reasons I am yet to really get. Maybe this would all make sense if we were to really get to know how a customer care call line really works.

Checking on someone’s call log you would be surprised to see the call to have lasted even over thirty minutes but the actual call where the customer was actually talking to the customer care representative would have lasted a minute or two.

Racheal Gatawa who is a customer stuck between Telecel and Econet says, ”Telecel works for me as most of the time they are quick to pick up where as with my Econet line I know I ca plug in my earphones and do what ever I am doing whilst I wait for the customer care representative to pick up.”.

“Econet has improved though It took me four minutes for my call to be picked,” said one Econet subscriber.

Could it be that the systems they have in place since they started haven’t been replaced as their client database grew? This could be the case with the Netone customer care line which I used to vouch for.  But the story with NetOne has changed as it is now taking ages. In this modern era where everything has gone digital these service providers should be on a mission to ensure that one doesn’t have to opt to having to visiting the customer care over something that they could have done over the phone while in the office or at the comfort of their own home.

The social media complaints seem to be super quick but one then wonders why it cannot be the same with the care lines. This is because with social media a complaint can go viral and also have other disgruntled customers ranting on their social media pages and accounts. An example is Econet’s Twitter and Facebook page which have the most active customer care representatives who if they would do the same and fix the care lines would have the best customer services.

One could then wonder why the sudden concern when the system seems to have been the same over the past years. Imagine trying to call the care line when you would have a mistakenly sent money to the wrong person and the call is only retrieved 20 minutes later. This particular delay in calls best believe will send a customer into panic mode. So this calls as a request or call on all the mobile service providers that they have to do something to improve their customer care line services as getting help is proving to be an uphill climb.

Econet’s customer care line along with the rest of the MNOs cater for three of the 16 local official languages namely in three languages which are English, Shona and Ndebele. The companies should consider adding more of the local lingos for the convenience of callers.

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