Papa John’s Customer Service – A Pizza Experience

I’ve written a very popular series on service calls, but as far as I can recall, I’ve never written about delivery experiences. I read about one the other day at Phil’s blog, Make it Great. Meikah, Becky, and Maria all wrote about Phil’s experience and I’ll also add my two cents.

  • Redundancy. I don’t know about the pizza delivery industry, but in technical industries, redundancy is important. Can’t they call in another driver or like Maria suggested, have another employee deliver the pizza? Redundant solutions should be available to prevent problems.
  • Work around the system. Robert Stephens says that his employees can break policies if it is for the purpose of “protecting the company’s reputation” – the store manager should have broken a policy and issued a gift card and/or refund to Phil.
  • Keep everyone in the loop. When Phil arrived at the store, the pizza was on a truck somewhere. They should have made him a new pizza for him while he was there and/or started making it as they knew he was leaving – for free.
  • Keep everyone in the loop (part 2). If the store knew there were going to be delays, they should have called and/or emailed Phil to let him know about it and offer other options.
  • Follow-up. The company should have followed up with Phil after the experience. He should have gotten a phone call later in the evening to confirm he got the pizza and later, a nice email or letter from a corporate executive or the manager apologizing and including a $25 or $50 gift card. Don’t be afraid to bribe customers – it may really help make the peace.
  • Apologize. Throughout the entire experience, Papa John’s should have been apologizing, explaining, and fixing. They should train their employees and managers to know how to apologize and to fix things.
  • Watch. If Papa John’s watched the blogosphere, they would have seen Phil’s blog post and dealt with it. Now, they would have to deal with the post on several other customer service blogs and all of the commenters who read about Phil’s experience on them.

I know that if I were in Phil’s situation, I would have given up and ordered from someone else. He was extremely patient and much more mellow about it than an average customer would have been. I admire his patience.

Have a great weekend! If you decide to order pizza, hopefully it will be a better experience.

3 Responses to “Papa John’s Customer Service – A Pizza Experience”

  1. Phil Gerbyshak said:

    Feb 18, 07 at 11:36 pm

    Great tips here for any company, not just the pizza business. Thanks for sharing your $2 worth.

  2. Meikah Delid said:

    Feb 19, 07 at 1:39 am

    You hit the bull’s eye at Watch, Doug! 😀 Considering that Papa John’s maintains a website and doing business through it, I wonder if they’ve read about the story.

  3. melissa weimer said:

    Nov 05, 07 at 10:07 pm

    I would like to inform you that I had a very bad experience with papa johns pizza in oak grove, KY. Phone numer is 2706405081. I oredered my pizza @ 7pm and @ 8pm I got a phone call from the restaurant asking me if I had recieved my pizza, I said no. Then the man on the phone said that the orders got mixed up and my pizza was still at the store, but when the driver arrived here he wanted me to let the driver use my phone so the manager could tell him not to give us what he had that it wasnt ours. I find this very unproffesional and this has to be the worst service I have gotten from any pizza place.