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What do you think it will take to fix EA/UO Customer Service?

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Jirel of Joiry, Apr 28, 2008.

  1. Jirel of Joiry

    Jirel of Joiry Certifiable
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    After what I went through I think we can definately say Customer Service is broken/nerfed/hosed (fill in your favorite adjective). What do you think it would take to fix it? Aside from a case of Fleets and the Sam's Club size bottle of tylenol..LOL [​IMG] J/K

    Seriously I think the GM system needs a complete over haul,IMHO. Let's here some ideas, suggestions, etc, etc. So start posting your ideas!!!
     
  2. Guest

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    People who care and are willing to invest the money.

    Sadly, regardless of Robert's pr spin we are indeed stuck with a small core group with little aid, especially in things like GMs.
     
  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

    An act of God.
     
  4. Jirel of Joiry

    Jirel of Joiry Certifiable
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    Well said shrike001, well said!

    How many people out there would be willing to do GM work in exchange for nothing more than their account(s) being paid for every month? I'd gladly donate 6-8 hrs a day up to even 12 hrs on weekends just to have my 4 accounts! I think all GM canidates should definately go through a screening process so to weed out those likely to abuse the power. I think some of the qualification should be:

    1) A basic understanding of coding whatever UO is coded in (C, C++,etc) gamebryo understanding would be a bonus but not necessary.

    2) Definately basic customer service skills

    3) Understanding of UO lore and History

    4) Must have played UO a MINAMUM of 5 years, actually played not just bought a veteran account!

    I'm open to more ideas, etc.
     
  5. Guest

    Guest Guest

    It would take a large investment by EA; They must look at the number of subsciptions and have a budget based on that of how much can be spent on GM and customer support, I think the support is shared by UO and DAOC, but I may be wrong about that. Bottom line is Customer support is not a priority for UO; please do not infer that I am being critical any of the folks working in the customer support roles currently, just that from all accounts the customer service is clearly lacking; the problem is not with the current support folks, it start from the top.
     
  6. Guest

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    <blockquote><hr>

    the problem is not with the current support folks, it start from the top.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    I'm actually going to disagree... its a bit of column A and of column B.

    Remember what happened to Sparkle?
     
  7. Jirel of Joiry

    Jirel of Joiry Certifiable
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    Too true Thunder!
     
  8. Guest

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    I think much of the issue 'at the bottom' is that they are understaffed, have a poor working knowledge of actual UO game mechanics and are required to hit a quota.

    Anyone who has actually submitted anything knows firsthand how most GMs at this time have no idea what this game is about or the actual issues that need to be dealt with. Not all, but most.
     
  9. Guest

    Guest Guest

    <blockquote><hr>

    I think much of the issue 'at the bottom' is that they are understaffed, have a poor working knowledge of actual UO game mechanics and are required to hit a quota.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    But those issues do not start at the bottom, they are form the top because of a lack of commitment to provide quality customer service. If I hire someone to paint my house and do not provide them with the tools is it their fault the house doesnt get painted? This is an orginizational issue.
     
  10. Guest

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    I'm not saying that they start there, just stating these are the problems.
     
  11. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Ya, I'll tend to have to agree here. Outsourcing Customer Support to another country to save the almighty 50 cents isn't a good move.
     
  12. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I don't know SQUAT about Coding or any of that..... But I know one heck of alot about the game..... I'd be MORE than willing to donate several hours a week if it paid for a few of my accounts....

    I could answer dozens and dozens of questions....... give help to folk.... and direct questions that are more technical in nature to those who REALLY could fix the problem.....

    I'd be willing to assist the Young.... like the old councilors....

    Following all that....... Heck I'd just like to actually get to speak to an english speaking person when I call tech support..... and have them actually have some knowledge of the game.
     
  13. Guest

    Guest Guest

    If you think EA's customer support is bad, you should try calling Charter Cable's customer service line. Ive actually had to hang up and call back because I couldnt understand the folks...
     
  14. Jirel of Joiry

    Jirel of Joiry Certifiable
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    You want the WORST customer service call AO-Hell's errr AOL's customer service! Not only do they not speak english, but it will take you a minimum of an hour to find out they can't help even though the problem is theirs. I honestly don't know wether to laugh or cry!
     
  15. Guest

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    I'd Settle for someone that speaks english when i call.
     
  16. Tomas_Bryce

    Tomas_Bryce Rares Collector Extraordinaire | Rares Fest Host
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    This is a very critical issue that many U.Hallers tend to not realize. Developers cannot ban cheaters. Only GMs can make that decision.

    GMs have a big say on our game play, yet we see very little input from their team relative to the dev team. Maybe Jeremy can be recruited to have one FoF question regarding customer service which is answered by GM lead? That might be a good start to opening up the communications line between customer service and players.
     
  17. The GMs need a labor union. One that will negotiate better performance indicators than raw numbers of "calls" handled.

    As near as I can tell, the biggest source of the problem is that, at some point, EA started counting raw numbers of calls handled as a means to determine a good vs. a bad GM. The result was that good GMs, who actually HANDLED calls, were axed or told, "don't be so good. Suck more."

    Here's a great story from last year.....A GM fixed my issue! Yay!!

    However, he or she at no point actually appeared, and thus when he or she fixed my issue, I didn't realize it a first. So when the "evaluation gump" appeared I almost gave him or her a bad review! Then I looked closer and saw that my issue had been resolved.

    That was an instance where the emphasis on speed not only worked to MY disadvantage, but also to THEIR's.

    If any GMs are reading this and wish to form a union, click here if you're based in Virginia:

    http://www.va-aflcio.org/

    or here

    http://www.aflcio.org/

    They will help you organize.

    -Galen's player
     
  18. Jirel of Joiry

    Jirel of Joiry Certifiable
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    They recogonize the Union in California too! If anyone has union info for California please post it in case the GMs are still in California.



    Edited because I apparently forgot basic grammer.
     
  19. The GMs need a labor union. One that will negotiate better performance indicators than raw numbers of "calls" handled.

    As near as I can tell, the biggest source of the problem is that, at some point, EA started counting raw numbers of calls handled as a means to determine a good vs. a bad GM. The result was that good GMs, who actually HANDLED calls, were axed or told, "don't be so good. Suck more."
    ---------------------------------

    I was in customer service. The #1 rule was 'get them off the phone as quickly as possible while having done steps A-F. The idea that we solved any problem was not addressed, it was how fast we got to step F and got them off the phone. I helped almost everybody and was constantly told 'wow thanks' and eventually quit as I was being slapped hard every day for my 'poor times'. ABSENCE OF LIABILITY again. Did step A-F. Who cares if you are helped. Problem with UO is a bloody program does step A-E and tried its best to boot you before you even get to a person. Please go to this webpage and if that doesn't work email us we'll respond to you in a week about your problem of 'my house blew up and all my items are locked down in the sky!' (hyperbole)

    as for players volunteering to help...class action suit by counselors ring a bell?
     
  20. Jirel of Joiry

    Jirel of Joiry Certifiable
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    I actually did not know about the lawsuit. I knew there was some problem that occured with the counselors , but I never knew what since they were gone when I started playing in 2001. Does anyone know the particulars or anything I could use to look up the case. Actually the lawsuit issue can be completely avoided with a well written and EVERYTHING spelled out clearly contract. Without some particulars some I might research the case I can't come up with how to avoid said pitfall if I don't know what I'm avoiding.
     
  21. Guest

    Guest Guest

    <blockquote><hr>

    What do you think it will take to fix EA/UO Customer Service?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Short of an Act of Bob, it would take substantial financial investement, which means it could be done if players were willing to pay for it.
     
  22. Belmarduk

    Belmarduk Guest

    <blockquote><hr>

    It would take a large investment by EA; They must look at the number of subsciptions and have a budget based on that of how much can be spent on GM and customer support, I think the support is shared by UO and DAOC, but I may be wrong about that. Bottom line is Customer support is not a priority for UO; please do not infer that I am being critical any of the folks working in the customer support roles currently, just that from all accounts the customer service is clearly lacking; the problem is not with the current support folks, it start from the top.

    [/ QUOTE ]
    /agree
     
  23. angelus aconitum

    angelus aconitum Journeyman
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    <blockquote><hr>

    After what I went through I think we can definately say Customer Service is broken/nerfed/hosed (fill in your favorite adjective). What do you think it would take to fix it? Aside from a case of Fleets and the Sam's Club size bottle of tylenol..LOL [​IMG] J/K

    Seriously I think the GM system needs a complete over haul,IMHO. Let's here some ideas, suggestions, etc, etc. So start posting your ideas!!!

    [/ QUOTE ]

    They need

    - a new management which focuses 60% on customers and 40% on shareholder value,

    - a new management which actually knows what they produce and serve to their customers,

    - a new management which are interested in their own products,

    - a new management which has actually a brain instead of the books they got placed into their heads while they crawled in front of their teachers at university,

    - a new management which has a look for the long run instead for the short period until the next shareholder's general meeting,

    - an economic environment where shareholder value is not the main reason for a business,

    - an economic environment where shareholders actually realize that good business sometimes needs more than just a few pennies for 3 months, but alot of investment into the future,

    - an economic environment where management has grown up with the product and identify themselves with the products they produce (the same goes for the shareholders)

    - a social environment where the people working in the service plants are actually getting something for their work,

    - service employees who get the time to learn the product or employees who already know the product,

    - customers who do not ring for service as soon as they don't have enough coffee at home,

    - customers who can actually explain what their problem is and not just send a line that something is wrong and what they did and

    - customers who ask/message in a normal or nicely way and not talk trash.


    There is alot more, but I think that service is a thing which is very hard to make right and to fullfill customers expectations.
    If UO would be a high seller, then customer service would be better, but as long as UO is a cash cow, there will not be many improvements to the service.
     
  24. Kaj

    Kaj Lore Keeper
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    <blockquote><hr>

    After what I went through I think we can definately say Customer Service is broken/nerfed/hosed (fill in your favorite adjective). What do you think it would take to fix it? Aside from a case of Fleets and the Sam's Club size bottle of tylenol..LOL [​IMG] J/K

    Seriously I think the GM system needs a complete over haul,IMHO. Let's here some ideas, suggestions, etc, etc. So start posting your ideas!!!

    [/ QUOTE ]
    Volunteers.

    There are many people with more knowledge than the GMs and most likely more dedication. Old volunteer crew would put in many hours per week, some even matched full time jobs. That just shows that there's people that want the best for UO. Much more than someone you hire for $20 an hour, give him 3 weeks training and let him go wild.
    Volunteers act from the passion they feel for the game and the feeling that they want to positively contribute towards their game.
    Hired people mostly act from the need of money to pay for their homes and food.

    I experienced this a lot when I worked for another MMORPG. The volunteers would be online whenever they were needed. The hired people were there 9-5 (minus 3 breaks and additional coffee breaks). My volunteers I could ring at 3AM and they'd help out. While with the paid folks.. Ugh.
     
  25. The answer is simple, yet also not.

    The answer lies in this chart - -

    http://www.mmogchart.com/Chart1.html

    EA clearly should mimic the in-game customer service powers and abilities provided within the one game which, apparently, has had industry-smashing huge success in customer aquisition and retention - you can pick out which one that is from the chart yourself.

    My understanding is that when your account there is compromised and gutted, they will return all of your things to you, etc. And that the nightmare of someone logging into your account and deleting all of your chars and stealing all of your stuff, and nobody being able to restore things for you, does not happen? They can actually fix things when they go horrible in those kinds of ways.

    The list of UO horror stories in my mind, big and small, seems to grow each month. Friend #1 gets scammed out of 2 mill, and EA does nothing. Acquaintance #1 has all chars deleted and houses stolen by former boyfriend who had password to her account (it being a password compromise does not put the blame on the user! In the real world of computer and account security, the fact that it was a password compromise vs. some other exploit means NOTHING, password compromise is a very common means of hacking!). Nothing is fixed for that person. Friend #3 gets scammed out of 10 mill because Etheral Cloaks apparently cannot be distinguished from a simple black cloak unless equipped. EA does nothing and the thief walks away, grinning.

    I donno what to say other than - - - fix this? modernize this? The goal was customer retention, not customer alienation, right? Drag out server backups for the worst cases if you have to?. Do what it takes?
     
  26. <blockquote><hr>

    A working knowledge of the English language!!!!!!


    Explains it all

    [/ QUOTE ]


    AMEN
    loose the people that don't understand us when we call. at least make customer support country specific as for the help you hire.

    nothing is more frustrating to a customer than calling for help just to explain it 20 times to the CSR because they don't know any other english word than hello and goodbye.
     
  27. Jahira-Tor

    Jahira-Tor Lore Master
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    It'd also be nice for me to have somone to call in Auz. If for eg my account was being hacked and i could see it happening, i wouldnt know who to call, let alone would it be during their office hours?
    Id love a freecall Australian service.
     
  28. the 4th man

    the 4th man Lore Master
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    I tend to say, moving jobs over- seas myself. I've seen this country go from having good CS to real crappy.

    Call CS from POTCO....hell, you'll connect with Oregon, at least Disney kept those jobs here for Americans!!
     
  29. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I would take a congressional hearing to ban outsourcing. Then you could possibly get a English speaking customer service agent.

    Imagine that...