March 13, 2023
The Washington Post recently published an article discussing the decline of phone customer support, and the impacts this has on consumers, featuring Abraham Seidmann, Professor of Information Systems and Michelle Shell, Assistant Professor of Operations and Technology Management.
Both large and small companies have limited the amount of live human support they offer to customers during times of need, becoming both inconvenient and irritating. The COVID-19 pandemic limited the number of phone line employees, consequently increasing the wait time for consumers seeking assistance during times of need.
Michelle adds that, “When people are anxious or have problems, they really, really want to talk… You need human contact.”
Companies claim that consumers prefer virtual support and chatbots, rather than phone agents, but surveys discovered that more than two-thirds of respondents prefer human representation when interacting with a company.