Cox Communications Customer Service

A friend of mine and longtime reader of Service Untitled sent me this link on Saturday. The link outlines a particular guy’s recent troubles with Cox Communications. It seems like there is never a lack of bad customer service, especially in industries where monopolies tend to occur like cable TV and Internet.

The guy (Shanti Braford) is a programmer who needs the Internet for his work. His Cox Internet service went out for a while and Cox handled the situation poorly. Like a lot of companies, the actual issue wasn’t that complicated to fix, but since the company handled the situation poorly, it became a much bigger customer service problem.

Why his Internet went out is actually pretty sad. From my understanding, Cox decided to disconnect a lot of people and only reconnected them once they complained. Shanti was a very vocal complainer, so I imagine his Internet got connected a lot sooner than his neighbor’s.

An anonymous representative from Cox contacted Shanti and answered some questions he had. The representative said that she makes $8.50 an hour and has a very comfortable job. Like a lot of lower level customer service representatives in backwards (at least in the customer service sense) organizations, this representative has to deal with all of Cox’s dumb policies and procedures. She isn’t empowered to do that much and these policies and procedures make it harder, if not near impossible, for her to provide great customer service. 

The representative also mentions how representatives rarely get recognition for a job well done. Most of the feedback they get is when something goes wrong and then it is obviously quite negative. This isn’t helpful and definitely isn’t an example of good coaching. I’m sure Anonymous Cog, as well as thousands of other customer service reps, can relate.

From Shanti’s story and the anonymous representative’s comment, I think we can learn the following:

  • When you do service calls, it is important to have a good relationship with the company actually doing the service call.
  • It is important to empower customer service representatives to go the extra mile.
  • It is critical to praise and recognize great customer service when it is provided.
  • Don’t do stupid things like unplugging people’s Internet and not plugging it back in until they complain.
  • Don’t complicate issues when they don’t have to be complicated.
  • As a customer, you sometimes have to be rather vocal to get your problem resolved.

A lot of these issues are common themes that you see recurring throughout customer service. They are issues I and others have written and spoken about before, but so many companies just don’t seem to get it. And who suffers because of that? The customers.

Oh and Shanti, I’ve been a DirecTV customer for a while. Although I have had a few problems with them, I would highly recommend them. I also like being a customer of a company that is not the local monopoly (ours is the probably as bad as Cox company Comcast).

8 Responses to “Cox Communications Customer Service”

  1. Anonymous Cog said:

    Aug 13, 07 at 3:08 pm

    Hi,

    Thanks for the link. FYI-I finally found a job outside of the call center and am leaving soon.

    see ya,

    AC

  2. Shanti Braford said:

    Aug 31, 07 at 4:43 pm

    Thank you for the link & recommendation re: DirecTV.

    I think your comment via email was poignant — that some big companies (like Ritz-Carlton, BMW, etc) really have managed to keep customer service a huge priority.

    I would almost be willing to pay for the BMW of phone/cable service if it really was that nice, etc.

  3. Service Untitled said:

    Aug 31, 07 at 10:14 pm

    The amount of people that would pay for a company that provides a regular product/service with great customer service is pretty surprising. A lot of people value service.

  4. jean clark said:

    Mar 14, 08 at 12:45 pm

    I/m having problems with cable reception on Viper chan 3There is interference with static like sound and blurry like pictures.I don”t notice this on other chanals. Troule findin a complaint site. Thank you Jean

  5. Sharon said:

    Apr 03, 08 at 8:27 pm

    My husband has Cox high speed internet..nothing but problems since installed one mo. ago. Called for help. However, when you finally reach a customer service tech.(waiting forever) he says, we have virus because we have high speed internet..they will fix it over the phone for $195.00. ..Since, we have their anti-virus …this makes no sense.??? Told tech we had dial up before..no problems, just slow..He said, because we have high speed internet easier for virus’s..Not able to get on slow dial up….HUH!..Now have to re-boot. to use internet…shuts down & freezes up..Disgusted with COX & the attitude…Our niece and neighbor also, have the same problem…seems to me it’s Cox internet problem.

  6. Rick Ballard said:

    Feb 09, 09 at 6:05 pm

    BEWARE! I struggled with the disconnects and lack of ability to connect for three years before switching to FIOS last week when it finallly became available in our neighborhood. Little did I realize that the instant Cox received my disconnect order, they shut down my email address @cox.net, which means I can’t get my several emails that I had archived there for safekeeping. If you plan to swicth internet service providers and you use cox.net email service, make sure you copy and paste all your critical emails BEFORE you discontinue service. Since cox.net makes a good stream of income with banner advertising, it seems like a very poor business practice to retaliate against customers by shutting down their email accounts, with no warning whatsoever.

  7. Tech Support Girl said:

    Feb 16, 10 at 1:20 am

    I finally quit that job after 3 1/2 years! I am so sorry to all of the people that I had to lie to on a daily basis. Seriously guys go to DSL or anything else. There were “outages” almost every single day. We were never given any information at our call center we were only told to tell you a technician is working on it or has been dispatched to work on it. Also Cox outsources a lot of the tech support calls. I never had the misfortune of having Cox services as I was working in one of the outsourced call centers in ND. I also have to tell you that the technicians have a whole 2 weeks of training in a classroom and 2 weeks of training on the floor (OJT). They have a computer in front of them that gives a “script” for what can be handled. A monkey could have done my job. After doing the basic power cycling of the modem and bypassing the router there really isn’t anything else that can be done with the techs over the phone. We either blamed the router or the modem or we had to transfer you to another group called Tier 2 or we had to schedule for a tech to come out. If the automated system doesn’t help then I can almost guarantee that getting a live person on the phone will not help either. Another thing, asking to speak to a manager is not going to get a manager on the line. When you ask for a manager you get someone called a SED, Supervisor Escalation Desk. These guys are just a higher up technician. If you ask for their manager you just get another SED. I have seen customers passed down the SED row and make it to the very end of the line until they seriously believed they had made it as high as they could in managers. I have sat through thousands of phone calls and did what I could (nothing) to help out. It is very sad but true. So just a word to the wise, avoid Cox like it is the plague! And if you have to take the service, as soon as your services stop working call in and demand a credit! It may be just a buck or so but still demand it. Continue to call in and demand a credit every single day that you do not have service! We were trained to not offer the credit and to only give it out when it was asked for. Again I must say if at all possible avoid Cox!!!

  8. Tech Support Girl said:

    Feb 16, 10 at 1:20 am

    I am pretty sure I am the Tech Support Girl who spoke to Shanti a few years ago.