CX fail: Worst call center experience ever goes to … Clear Wireless

We’ve all bounced around unnecessarily convoluted call center menus, had our CX issues punted from department to department, and dealt with hopelessly hapless CSRs. It’s so common in the world of “customer service” that I brace myself whenever I have to call an 800 or 888 number for help.

Today, I called to cancel my Clear Wireless home internet service because I’m moving to New York City and my new roommates already have wifi. I called the main line prominently posted on the company’s website, went through the menu until I could select that I wanted to cancel my service, and was told to hang up and dial a different number.

<commence rant>

If you’re sending me to a department your company, why not transfer my call automatically rather than make me scramble for a scrap of paper so I can scribble down the number, and then hang up to make the call myself? Thank goodness I found paper and a pen nearby, or I’d have to go through that whole menu again. CX fail.

I got through on the second number, answered all of the CSR’s security questions (including ones I’d confirmed with the automated system – CX fail!), and listened to his obnoxiously long-winded and phony-sounding script. When we were finally through, he asked me what I was calling about and told me that another department handles cancellations and he’d have to transfer me. What! CX fail.

He got another CSR on the line who, over the course of 20 minutes, took the situation from bad to unbelievably bad. He tried to up-sell, cross-sell, and even get me to sell Clear services. He said the only way I could avoid a $40 restocking fee was to get someone else to take over the service for me. I asked what was the benefit to the other person of my doing that over her opening a new account, and he explained that the bills would go to that person, not stay in my name. I clarified the question and he repeated his answer.

This process of repetition and ignoring what I said – or, even worse, repeating back to me what I said, only to continue with the same script – continued on other topics and I got increasingly frustrated. I finally asked to speak to a supervisor and was told they were in a meeting. All of them. He asked if I wanted to wait for 30-40 minutes on hold. Wow.

I asked him to have his manager call me back. I asked for her name and his. He said he would go ahead and process the cancellation with the $40 charge in the meantime. I had explicitly stated (2 or 3 times) that I did not accept that charge, since I had spoken to two people at the company previously who told me there was no charge. CX fail.

The ridiculous back and forth continued until I was at my wit’s end. I told him I needed to go, since he couldn’t help me and couldn’t get a supervisor on the line. He asked if there was anything else he could help me with. I almost spat in disbelief, but I reiterated my position. He launched into repeating the same script and … I hung up.

As a rule, I don’t hang up on people and, in fact, pride myself on being nice to people providing customer service. Clear Wireless, you drove me to exasperation and rudeness. I lost count of your CX tally, but you are the clear winner of ‘WORST CALL CENTER EXPERIENCE EVER’.

<conclude rant>

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