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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Learning to Love a Cable Guy (Great article)


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24 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   saleen351

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 08:13 AM

Full Story Link

When workers from AT&T and Verizon visit homes to install their new television services, they come with blue hospital booties that they slip over their shoes before going inside.

The sight of burly installers in dainty slip-ons might induce snickers. But the booties are just one of the many ways in which phone and cable companies are trying to reverse their reputations for shoddy service and win over customers who have a growing number of alternatives.
.....


Moderator Edit: We trimmed the length of the article... since it is available on a free website... click the link for all the details.... Earl

...Ads Help To Support This SIte...

#2 OFFLINE   saleen351

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 08:14 AM

Found this on digg. The reason I post this is because DTV has been going backwards while the other companies realize they need to improve and they are doing so.

DTV is in trouble if they don't fix their problems, the old DTV customer service is dead!!!! We are approaching cable tv customer treatment..

#3 OFFLINE   Cap'n Preshoot

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 08:38 AM

Found this on digg. The reason I post this is because DTV has been going backwards while the other companies realize they need to improve and they are doing so.

DTV is in trouble if they don't fix their problems, the old DTV customer service is dead!!!! We are approaching cable tv customer treatment..


Problems are unlikely to get fixed as long as they use contract installers & service techs with marginal skills and starvation wages. The installers themselves are contractors and so are only paid by the number of installs and/or service calls they complete in a day. If they want to average more than $10/hour they're going to have to do more in that hour which means racing through jobs and cutting corners. Only the vehicle, fuel and supplies (consumables) are furnished. The tech has to provide their own uniforms & tools, avg $1600, which is then deducted from their already meager pay at $50/week

#4 OFFLINE   naijai

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 08:38 AM

Found this on digg. The reason I post this is because DTV has been going backwards while the other companies realize they need to improve and they are doing so.

DTV is in trouble if they don't fix their problems, the old DTV customer service is dead!!!! We are approaching cable tv customer treatment..


Thats not true :nono2:
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.
Winston Churchill

DIRECTV employee since May 2003.
All comments are my own. Unless specifically stated, my views DO NOT represent the views of DIRECTV

#5 OFFLINE   jpl

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 08:43 AM

While I salute what the cable company here is doing, I think these companies still have a long way to go to catch up with DirecTV. I hear alot of complaints about their customer service. I've never had an issue with it. I get on the phone to report a problem, and I'm talking to a live operator within 30 seconds. I try calling Verizon because my phone is acting weird, and I can't find the right number to call (even whe I used the number on the back of my latest bill - which was no longer in service!).

I also have no idea how Comcast is now doing on this front, but when I used to be a customer of theirs (just over 4 years ago), it was aweful. I understand that they've improved a bit.... I think that companies are finally realizing that customers care about customer service. It's the reason I keep buying Dell computers - and the reason I ditched my Palm M500 PDA for a Sony Clie (Palm is a case study in bad customer service).

#6 OFFLINE   nhguy

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 08:45 AM

Thats not true :nono2:


DTV cust. service is worse than the service from Comcast. It's no longer approaching it. It's overtaken it.

#7 OFFLINE   jpl

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 08:52 AM

DTV cust. service is worse than the service from Comcast. It's no longer approaching it. It's overtaken it.


I have a real hard time believing that... When we had Comcast installed, the installer came out to my house without the right equipment to do the job. He wanted to drill through the floor. I wante him to fish the line up through a wall, over my crawlspace. He didn't have the equipment to do that. So he left us the cable sitting in the crawlspace, and WE (me and my wife) installed it! I never got that with a D* installer.

#8 OFFLINE   Steve Mehs

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 10:28 AM

Why is it hard to believe, just because you had a bad experience, doesn’t mean every Comcast subscriber in the country has.

Out of all (really not that many, maybe 10) service/install techs I’ve dealt with from Dish, DirecTV and Time Warner, the TW installer was by far the most thorough and professional.

With Dish, the initial installer was great, but when I had my second dish installed for locals, the guy connected the Dish 500 and Dish 300 with a SW64 and just left the switch dangling off the roof. Not more then 2 weeks later the switch died. A different tech from the same company came out and replaced the 2 dual LNBs with a Twin LNB and used SW21s. Then when we got our DVRs, the installer just gave us the remote, instruction manual and said here, this will explain everything, have a nice day.

The DirecTV guys were a little better, but had no clue when it came to the DirecTiVo loss of color problem. They blamed it on everything from wiring, to interference from other satellite dishes to interference from my XM receiver. The after they replaced everything, and each DTiVo was swapped out for the third time they said it had to be something in the building material of the house. The outside install was kind of shoddy as well, not as bad as when the Dish SW64 was up there.

Now for the Time Warner guy, when I had cable TV installed earlier this year he ran all new wiring, fastened it to the basement ceiling (as opposed to wrapping it around the plastic water pipes like the satellite guys did). When the install was done he hooked up the box and gave me a 10 minute demo on the features, he showed me how to set up DVR events, how to work the PIP and some menu settings. Not that I couldn’t figure it out, but it was appreciated. Then a week later he came back to hook up the living room TV. (I only wanted cable on my HDTV to see how I’d like it, so I only wanted one TV hooked up that day). For the SDTV in the living room I ordered an Explorer 8300 standard def DVR, the guy shows up with the wrong box, he brought another high def DVR. Damn that sucks :D I actually went to the office and switched the box out since HD DVRs are in short supply and I didn’t actually need one for that TV.

Along with that and the time when my internet connection would periodically go out (before I had cable TV), the tech was great. Easter Sunday he shows up right at 8AM, runs a new line, since the original incoming cable line was crushed due the settling of our concrete driveway, and we made it to 9AM Easter Mass on time. And got a free month of service to boot. That’s why even if cable is a little more, expensive, in my eyes it’s not, I don’t core, it’s service like that, that I never got from satellite and I appreciate it very much and will keep me as a customer.

I also love Time Warner's Service Policy

Our Guarantee

We guarantee prompt, courteous and on-time service, or you will be eligible for a $20 credit.
We guarantee to credit your account for any major service interruption in excess of four hours, upon request.
We guarantee that during your first month of service, if you are not satisfied, upon request we will disconnect your service and promptly refund your monthly charge and installation fee.
We will service your cable within 24 hours if all of your TV sets have no picture.


http://www.timewarne...cepolicies.html
Friends Don't Let Friends Subscribe To: Verizon Landline, Verizon DSL, Verizon Fios Phone, Verizon Fios Broadband, Verizon Fios TV, Verizon Wireless or Verizion Wireless Mobile Broadband
Keep America Beautiful, Ban Verizon From Your Home!
Down With Verizon!

#9 OFFLINE   cybok0

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Posted 28 August 2006 - 11:58 AM

I have a real hard time believing that... When we had Comcast installed, the installer came out to my house without the right equipment to do the job. He wanted to drill through the floor. I wante him to fish the line up through a wall, over my crawlspace. He didn't have the equipment to do that. So he left us the cable sitting in the crawlspace, and WE (me and my wife) installed it! I never got that with a D* installer.


D* refuses to crawl under my house. I'll give comcast credit for one thing they will crawl under and my phone company will do this also. so I got lines going threw the side of the house instead of under.Thats the only problem I have with D*.
___________________________________________
Tom
Directv user since 1995
Samsung DTIVO retired :(
HR22-100, HR24-500
R-16

#10 OFFLINE   White_Horse

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 06:19 AM

Comcast customer services varies widely, it all depends entirely on the area you are in. When my husband and I lived in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, the Comcast services wasn't bad. Wasn't great...but wasn't bad either...about on par with where Directv is now. We moved to Harford County, Maryland and Comcast customer service sucks. The difference being those two counties go into different call centers. The call center and people working out of the office that services Harford County are terrible. Anne Arundel County call center....ehh...like I said..so so.

I know on the few occasions we've had to call Directv, the CSR service has been pretty much on par with every other help desk/call center that we've had to call for a large company. And if Directv's call center is anything like the call centers at the company I work for...the CSR's are poorly trained, high turn-over rate, and only have scripts to work from. Heck..I'm surprised we're not getting routed first to India or Malaysia when you call Directv and then routed back if a 1st level CSR can't solve the problem.

#11 OFFLINE   cbeckner80

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 07:30 AM

Found this on digg. The reason I post this is because DTV has been going backwards while the other companies realize they need to improve and they are doing so.

DTV is in trouble if they don't fix their problems, the old DTV customer service is dead!!!! We are approaching cable tv customer treatment..


Very true. D* has the worst telephone tree of anyone CS I think I've ever called. Unless you have the "special" direct numbers that we see on here once in a while, it's a real pain to get to a CSR.

On the other hand, both times I've had an installer here, they did outstanding jobs. From what I've read in this forum, that seems to depend on what part of the country you live in, and what sub contactor D* has.

#12 OFFLINE   Earl Bonovich

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 08:00 AM

Very true. D* has the worst telephone tree of anyone CS I think I've ever called. Unless you have the "special" direct numbers that we see on here once in a while, it's a real pain to get to a CSR.


Try calling some of these collection/estate departments I have been dealing with for my Dad's affairs.... one of them, I had to hit 10+ menu's to get to a person... just to find out that they where closed.
Earl - Gotta Love Karma

DIRECTV employee since April 2008.
All comments are my own. Unless specifically stated, my views do NOT represent the views of DIRECTV

#13 OFFLINE   mhayes70

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 01:11 PM

Very true. D* has the worst telephone tree of anyone CS I think I've ever called. Unless you have the "special" direct numbers that we see on here once in a while, it's a real pain to get to a CSR.


I usually don't have that problem when I call D*. I just say tech support or customer service and I get someone within a couple of minutes.

#14 OFFLINE   dtv757

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 02:19 PM

whever i try to call cox HSI for a problem i'm on hold forever. and then i get there annoying animated system saying sorry "i cant find your modem." please wait while i find an agent.

when ever i call D* i get an agent after a few minutes. as for instalation D* seams to be hit and miss. some good ones some sloppy ones. never had to call the cox guy cause i have never upgraded my services, but they might send one out soon when i go FiOS.

"learning to love a cable guy" well i liked the last D* instaler i had who changed my programing to the NEW customer NFLST offer.

#15 OFFLINE   nhguy

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 02:23 PM

I usually don't have that problem when I call D*. I just say tech support or customer service and I get someone within a couple of minutes.


I find if I call early in the day, say before 9:00 AM on a Saturday or Sunday, I have much better luck in getting through quickly and get a more intelligent CSR than I have during the evening hours. I'm sure it's a function of number of calls vs quantity of CSRs.

#16 OFFLINE   Jhon69

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Posted 30 August 2006 - 04:29 AM

D* refuses to crawl under my house. I'll give comcast credit for one thing they will crawl under and my phone company will do this also. so I got lines going threw the side of the house instead of under.Thats the only problem I have with D*.


Had the same thing happen to me.I cancelled the install called D* back up told them what happened and what I needed.The second installer they sent out(same
company) was one of their trainers.I told him want I wanted he told me no problem.He ran the line(under the house) tweaked and peaked the dish with his
signal meter.Set up my remote showed me a general operation of my new system.
Made sure I was happy with the picture.I was so satisfied with the install I gave
him and his trainee $20 for lunch.I am now a very happy Directv customer.:D

#17 OFFLINE   BillyT2002

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Posted 30 August 2006 - 06:02 AM

Thats not true :nono2:


With all due respect, it absolutely is true and on many fronts other than product installation. Since Rupert Murdoch and NDS have taken over DirecTV, customer service has gone downhill (I always get a D* rep prompty and they are more often than not friendly, but the information provided is more often than not wrong. I'm always polite and cordial on the phone with CSRs from any company, and even when I'm fairly sure the answer is incorrect, I just say goodbye, end the call and call back later in the first place. I sometimes wonder why I call at all as usually I'm not so much looking for how to do something as I am looking to confirm information I already know.), install service has gone downhill and you the NDS DVR at this stage is inferior to the TIVO product you already had in terms of both reliability and functionality. DirecTV is stating they want a higher caliber of customer, and they are continually raising rates every year (which is fine by me - I don't care what I pay for television), but they are consistently downgrading the level of service in order to keep their costs low and it is showing up in many ways. DirecTV used to be the HD leader and now they're not even that. I'm told I'm a 5-star customer, but I'm itching for the chance to jump at another provider at this point. The only thing which keeps me with DirecTV right now is the TIVO-based DVR. That is it.

It's really too bad - I used to love my DirecTV service and my TIVO DVR and now I still love my TIVO DVR, but I don't even like DirecTV anymore.

I'd love to see DirecTV turn things around, but I have no faith that they will and I sincerely hope that the customer churn numbers reveal the mistakes DirecTV has made before it is too late.

#18 OFFLINE   saleen351

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Posted 30 August 2006 - 08:52 AM

DTV seems pretty clueless, they will send guys out to your house in nondescript trucks. If I ran the company only DTV vans with logos would show up to people's houses. How many times would a neighbor sign up with the service if the Jones across the street had DTV service...

I'd own the install companies or atleast some of those in the larger metro areas or problem areas.

If Mrs Jones has a problem and it's not resolved in the system by the alloted time for the love of god DTV be proactive and find out what went wrong and alert the customer.

Have a clear cut install policy about what could cost extra.

Make sure your install reps, look the part and act the part and make sure they speak english.

Not rocket science, but while Ford relied on SUVs, DTV relies on the NFLST, and we know what happened to Ford.

DTV has lost it's way, and I see them doing nothing to fix their problems, they can't even get their dvr to record shows correctly.

#19 OFFLINE   jpl

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Posted 30 August 2006 - 01:14 PM

It wasn't just the install that I had issues with. I had a Comcast CSR lie to me, yes that's what I consider it, over the phone regarding their rates. We got quoted some figure (I think it was $27/month back then) when I first called to find out their rates. A few days later, I called to subscribe, and they quoted me a cost of $29/month. Granted, it's $2, but I was less then impressed. I asked about that difference, and was told "oh, we just raised rates." I asked "how long ago?" "Just recently..." I asked "when was that rate increase announced?" "oh, some time ago..." The original CSR knew the rate was old, and still quoted it to me. I chalked it up to an honest mistake at the time.

But they've also misrepresented the cost of their digital service to me. And every time I called them, I was given a serious run-around. I'm normally pretty patient, but every time it was a battle with them. And every time I would get the attitude that I was bothering them. I can only hope that they've improved. The thing is, I live in the Philly area - in Comcast's backyard. I've come to understand that Comcast in some areas (particularly in VA - I know folks down there) are pretty decent. The prices for their service aren't as horrendous as they are up here.

Call me silly, but I appreciate the fact that I can get through to a live operator within 30 seconds if I have a problem, and I appreciate a friendly "thank you for calling, what can I do for you today?"

#20 OFFLINE   BillyT2002

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Posted 30 August 2006 - 02:55 PM

Well, that's most likely why I have no problems with looking at other providers. I basically don't care how much money per month I spend on television. I'll pay $5000 per month if they want it and will provide exactly what I'm looking for in terms of content and access. I'm precisely the upper demographic of customer that DirecTV is looking for, but they keep alienating me to the point where I'm looking at any other provider who will give me what I want which ultimately is a RELIABLE DVR (most likely TIVO based solution unless by some miracle NDS DVRs become 99.999999% reliable in not freezing and recording what I instruct it to) which records in high-definition and offers me more functionality than limitations, eventually (hopefully) certain high-definition channels in 1080i and ideally the SciFi channel and all of my broadcast networks in high-definition.

I used to love DirecTV (and I started with them when they first started their business) and now I'm at the point where I don't even like them anymore, but they are still the best provider in the area solely because of my DirecTIVO (HR10-250).

I would rather have a CSR call me rude names, slap me and tell me the truth, than someone who can politely give me misinformation, any day.




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