Mystery Caller – Warsaw calling


"What a beautiful name," said Sam. I vomited as quietly as I could into a handy wastepaper basket.

Sixth – T-Mobile

I pressed the option that told the woman in the machine I wanted to become a T-Mobile customer.

With some trepidation, in case I was put through to a recorded announcement, I pressed option four for ‘general information on T-Mobile’.

As things turned out, a conversation with a recorded announcement would have been more rewarding.

Sam picked up my call somewhere in the Philippines, close to Manila. I know, because I asked why I was having to strain every audio sinew to hear what he was trying to tell me.

Sam asked for my name. "Mr Howard," I told him.

"What a beautiful name," said Sam. I vomited as quietly as I could into a handy wastepaper basket.

I explained the people who worked for me were, in the main, Polish and had asked me to find out whether there was any cheap prepay option for calling from England back home.

Did Sam know of any offers or tariffs from T-Mobile that would fit the bill?

"Certainly, I will look into this," said Sam, but he didn’t sound too confident as he went off into the ether to confer.

The reason became clear when he returned; he hadn’t understood my question.

"When you are in Poland, calls cost 35p to send and 19p to receive. Texts are 40p and a picture message costs 20p."

I explained again, but slower. This time, Sam told me that the cost to make a call from a mobile to Poland was 30p a minute.

In a final attempt to get blood out of this particular stone, I asked whether there might be a special prepay tariff for UK to Europe calls. If there was, how did I get it for my staff?

Sam disappeared again, only to return with a garbled version of the information he should have given me in the first place.

"Text India November Tango to 441 and you’ll get the International option, with calls at 5p a minute to fixed-line and 15p a minute to mobiles. Texts are 10p."

Sam had no idea about where to get 50 cheap SIM cards either. So, taking everything into consideration, the call was pretty much worthless. 

Time of call – 19:20 weekday

Duration of call – 8 minutes

Length of queue – 2 minutes

Assistant introduced by name – Yes

Manner = 3/5

Understanding  = 1/5

Knowledge = 1/5

Helpfulness = 2/5

Clarity = 1/5

Overal = 2/5

Total =  10/30


The full version of Mobile News’ fortnightly Mystery Caller feature is only available in the print edition of the magazine. See how other network operators call centre staff did on this subject in Mobile News issue 421 (August 25, 2008).

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