As published in Scotsman Guide's Residential Edition, March 2007.
Many mortgage companies claim that using technology brings them closer to their customers. But when customers call, they are put on hold for 20 minutes. All the while, a mechanical voice also tells these customers that they are valued and that a customer-service representative will be with them shortly.
In cases such as this, technology has distanced businesses from their customers, rather than enhanced the customer experience and relationship. Although quality customer service has often been a victim of increased technology use, many consumers are now demanding its return.
Why the disconnect?
There are many reasons that technology is distancing mortgage businesses from their customers, such as instant gratification and an increased dependence on technology.
Many consumers have become obsessed with instant gratification. With cell phones and e-mail, we are in instant and constant contact with the world. And if we don't respond to a call or an e-mail almost immediately, we are likely to receive another call or message. Worse, we feel guilty if we don't respond instantly.
In an effort to satisfy the consumer's desire for an immediate response, we have created faster computers, more-sophisticated personal digital assistants and cell phones, complicated software programs that make data available at a moment's notice, and voice-response systems that are touted as being better than talking to a real, live person.
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