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#1 Aug 15 2012 at 2:12 PM Rating: Default
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So, I consider myself to be "in with the technical ages". I do online banking. I use auto-pay to pay for all of my bills. I don't own a "check book". I have been a smart phone user since JAN 2007 and I have laptops and a tablet. However, there are times when I prefer to talk to a person as opposed to an automated machine.

Those times are usually when I can't find my answer online or want to ask a series of questions other than my "current balance". Nowadays, the "press 0 for an operator" voice recording isn't there and you either have to know to press 0 or go through a series of automated responses to finally find a person to talk to. I understand the point of trying not to tie up the phone lines with information that can be found on the Internet or phone, but it's terribly annoying to have to go through so much work just to talk to an agent.

Has anyone else experienced this?
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#2 Aug 15 2012 at 2:33 PM Rating: Excellent
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Depends on who you are calling, the 0=operator option isn't always viable. The reason for this is if you are calling a national company that has local agents it needs to redirect you to correct dept. For example where I work there is billing, sales, cable tech, phone tech, internet tech and specialized tech agents. Sales, billing and cable techs only handle local region calls. Internet and phone are handled on a national level, Specialized techs depend on what they do. If you dont follow the prompt and you are in cali you could get routed to MA and have to be transfered again. As annoying as the prompts are it is actually to assist you get to where you need to go. Skipping through the IVR or just spamming # will get you to an agent but is likely the wrong dept.
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#3 Aug 15 2012 at 2:34 PM Rating: Excellent
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1. Press 0.
2. If that fails, just say "AGENT"
3. If that fails, abuse the thesaurus and repeat step 2.

Nearly every automated system out there has a verbal shortcut for speaking to an agent. They may choose not to present it to you, but it's there. The rest of them are entirely useless and warrant similar frustration, but the ratio is in your favor.
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#4 Aug 15 2012 at 2:42 PM Rating: Good
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Sometimes "representative" works as well.
#5 Aug 15 2012 at 2:47 PM Rating: Good
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What is especially frustrating to me is that my bank doesn't have it's own phone number, apparently. I was trying to call and find a branch close to me when I had first moved here and I ended up talking to someone on another island who didn't know the Big Island at all. When I asked to be transferred to a bank on the Big Island, she said I'd need the specific branch to be transferred. Frustrating.
#6 Aug 15 2012 at 3:06 PM Rating: Default
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Tyrrant wrote:
Depends on who you are calling, the 0=operator option isn't always viable. The reason for this is if you are calling a national company that has local agents it needs to redirect you to correct dept. For example where I work there is billing, sales, cable tech, phone tech, internet tech and specialized tech agents. Sales, billing and cable techs only handle local region calls. Internet and phone are handled on a national level, Specialized techs depend on what they do. If you dont follow the prompt and you are in cali you could get routed to MA and have to be transfered again. As annoying as the prompts are it is actually to assist you get to where you need to go. Skipping through the IVR or just spamming # will get you to an agent but is likely the wrong dept.


I have no problem verifying my identity or getting to the right department via automation. I just hate it when I'm forced to hear information like location, hours of operation, my "balance" with all of the other common information that can be found online. I get their intent, but if it's a lot of information, then you're wasting my time.
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#7 Aug 15 2012 at 3:19 PM Rating: Excellent
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I was expecting...
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#8 Aug 15 2012 at 3:27 PM Rating: Excellent
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My favorite was a company I had to contact frequently for tech support. They changed their phone menu one day thought it best to let us know. Now, I'm all for that, it really was nice of them. However, after almost 2 years having to listen to the same 30-second long (I kid you not) message about their new menu options, I was slightly less understanding.

Well, that and the fact you probably shouldn't employ high-school dropouts in your call center and expect them to try and answer tech support calls filled with complex science words. Smiley: disappointed

Edited, Aug 15th 2012 2:27pm by someproteinguy
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#9 Aug 15 2012 at 3:39 PM Rating: Default
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someproteinguy wrote:
My favorite was a company I had to contact frequently for tech support. They changed their phone menu one day thought it best to let us know. Now, I'm all for that, it really was nice of them. However, after almost 2 years having to listen to the same 30-second long (I kid you not) message about their new menu options, I was slightly less understanding.

Well, that and the fact you probably shouldn't employ high-school dropouts in your call center and expect them to try and answer tech support calls filled with complex science words. Smiley: disappointed

Edited, Aug 15th 2012 2:27pm by someproteinguy


Well, nowadays, EVERYONE says "listen carefully as our menu options have changed" and "we are experiencing an unusual volume of calls".

I remember calling Microsoft in order to test for their Microsoft certifications and they would have a, no lie, 5 min recording that you HAD to listen to PRIOR to making any decisions. Companies are trying to answer every common question before being placed to an agent.
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#10 Aug 15 2012 at 4:35 PM Rating: Decent
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Jophiel wrote:
I was expecting...

Haha, I was too. I looked the the thread maker and was like "Oh I didn't know Alma played tf2".
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#11 Aug 15 2012 at 7:10 PM Rating: Default
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My brothers do... definitely a good game, I'm just behind in games in general...like a decade...
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#12 Aug 15 2012 at 7:55 PM Rating: Good
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It's a cheap grab, a well designed game (in that it's accessible for new players and still interesting to play at a competitive level), and there are a fair number of allakhazam people who at least own the game. If you have an interest in FPS games, I'd recommend it.
#13 Aug 16 2012 at 11:13 AM Rating: Good
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The best thing to do, if you finally get a hold of the "right" person at least one time, is to ask them for their extension, their direct number, or a back line number for their department. Especially if its a local business. A lot of banks, hospitals, and businesses will have a second back line phone number, where you'll go straight to a live person, or even better, straight to the person you need to talk to.
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#14 Aug 16 2012 at 2:01 PM Rating: Decent
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Almalieque wrote:
So, I consider myself to be "in with the technical ages". I do online banking. I use auto-pay to pay for all of my bills. I don't own a "check book". I have been a smart phone user since JAN 2007 and I have laptops and a tablet. However, there are times when I prefer to talk to a person as opposed to an automated machine.

Those times are usually when I can't find my answer online or want to ask a series of questions other than my "current balance". Nowadays, the "press 0 for an operator" voice recording isn't there and you either have to know to press 0 or go through a series of automated responses to finally find a person to talk to. I understand the point of trying not to tie up the phone lines with information that can be found on the Internet or phone, but it's terribly annoying to have to go through so much work just to talk to an agent.

Has anyone else experienced this?



Customer service from about anybody seems to be next to nothing anymore. This is something I find to be very annoying. Trying to get a hold of about any utility company is a huge run around anymore. You know what else really makes me mad? When you call and the prompts require you to input things like account #, birthday, last 4 of social, etc. That would be fine except when a live person does pick up they require you to give them the exact same information you just gave the computer. IF the computer has allready looked up who you are and has your info why does it not pop up on the persons computer screen when you finally reach them. If they can't do that then why do we have to take the time to give it to the computer in the first place?

Another annoying thing is requiring you to push a number for multiple menus. Sure I can understand the first menu where you press 1 for billing, 2 for tech support, etc. But when they break it down to 3 and 4 menu's it gets pretty annoying. When you get to the end of the menu and finally get a human being chances are you are going to get the same person regardless if on submenu 3 you pressed 1 for this problem or 2 for that problem.

What is even better is when you finally go through all the above mentioned things and right when it tells you to hold for somebody you get an automated message telling you they are closed.....

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#15 Aug 16 2012 at 2:20 PM Rating: Good
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A fair--though not all--of the hoops you're forced to jump through are for your own benefit. For example:
Quote:
Another annoying thing is requiring you to push a number for multiple menus. Sure I can understand the first menu where you press 1 for billing, 2 for tech support, etc. But when they break it down to 3 and 4 menu's it gets pretty annoying. When you get to the end of the menu and finally get a human being chances are you are going to get the same person regardless if on submenu 3 you pressed 1 for this problem or 2 for that problem.

As for what you probably most care about, having those menus gets you through faster. Even if it is the same person, that individual knowing the exact nature of your request and already being in the menu to take care of it is a lot better than keeping you on hold longer while she is asking a person about the nature of his problem.
#16 Aug 16 2012 at 2:45 PM Rating: Excellent
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fronglo wrote:
You know what else really makes me mad? When you call and the prompts require you to input things like account #, birthday, last 4 of social, etc. That would be fine except when a live person does pick up they require you to give them the exact same information you just gave the computer. IF the computer has allready looked up who you are and has your info why does it not pop up on the persons computer screen when you finally reach them. If they can't do that then why do we have to take the time to give it to the computer in the first place?


I can't speak for all companies but if the company you are calling deals with phone the agent HAS to confirm these things before discussing the account with you. For example if somone calls in to me and needs a troublecall or wants specifics on the account and they have phone services if I do NOT follow CPNI information and the call is monitored it is grounds for an immediate final warning. CPNI information is required to be confirmed by FCC regulations.
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#17 Aug 16 2012 at 3:01 PM Rating: Decent
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Allegory wrote:
A fair--though not all--of the hoops you're forced to jump through are for your own benefit. For example:
Quote:
Another annoying thing is requiring you to push a number for multiple menus. Sure I can understand the first menu where you press 1 for billing, 2 for tech support, etc. But when they break it down to 3 and 4 menu's it gets pretty annoying. When you get to the end of the menu and finally get a human being chances are you are going to get the same person regardless if on submenu 3 you pressed 1 for this problem or 2 for that problem.

As for what you probably most care about, having those menus gets you through faster. Even if it is the same person, that individual knowing the exact nature of your request and already being in the menu to take care of it is a lot better than keeping you on hold longer while she is asking a person about the nature of his problem.


This is ******** though. 9 times out of 10, regardless of what info you provide up front (either through menu navigation or verbal input), the rep on the other side will ask you to repeat it all. Most IVR systems simply provide generic team-based call routing. All that other crap they ask you to put in is useless unless they have an integrated management app that displays that input on the computer when the rep answers the call (something I've personally been involved in, but it's hella expensive to do).
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You guys keep tossing facts out there like they mean something.


#18 Aug 16 2012 at 3:05 PM Rating: Good
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That's not been my experience with Timewarner Cable, TXU, or Wellsfargo.
#19 Aug 16 2012 at 3:08 PM Rating: Decent
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Allegory wrote:
That's not been my experience with Timewarner Cable, TXU, or Wellsfargo.
Maybe you've been lucky. Personally, I don't know whether to laugh or cry in frustration when I sign on to Charter.com's online chat support, have to provide my full name, billing address, and account number, only to have the very first rep ask me "Who am I talking with today?" despite my name (which I provided mere seconds before connecting) clearly being printed in the chat log. This is not an isolated experience.
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gbaji wrote:
You guys keep tossing facts out there like they mean something.


#20 Aug 16 2012 at 5:35 PM Rating: Excellent
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BrownDuck wrote:
Allegory wrote:
That's not been my experience with Timewarner Cable, TXU, or Wellsfargo.
Maybe you've been lucky. Personally, I don't know whether to laugh or cry in frustration when I sign on to Charter.com's online chat support, have to provide my full name, billing address, and account number, only to have the very first rep ask me "Who am I talking with today?" despite my name (which I provided mere seconds before connecting) clearly being printed in the chat log. This is not an isolated experience.


I agree 100% it is annoying as ****, but not always is the information provided and the person talking one and the same. I have calls ALL the time where person calling is NOT account holder and no matter what they say I am fairly sure that the 12 year old sounding female on the phone is NOT the elderly man named john who is account holder. But when asked "who am I speaking with today" I get the response "john".
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#21 Aug 16 2012 at 5:48 PM Rating: Decent
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BrownDuck wrote:
Allegory wrote:
A fair--though not all--of the hoops you're forced to jump through are for your own benefit. For example:
Quote:
Another annoying thing is requiring you to push a number for multiple menus. Sure I can understand the first menu where you press 1 for billing, 2 for tech support, etc. But when they break it down to 3 and 4 menu's it gets pretty annoying. When you get to the end of the menu and finally get a human being chances are you are going to get the same person regardless if on submenu 3 you pressed 1 for this problem or 2 for that problem.

As for what you probably most care about, having those menus gets you through faster. Even if it is the same person, that individual knowing the exact nature of your request and already being in the menu to take care of it is a lot better than keeping you on hold longer while she is asking a person about the nature of his problem.


This is bullsh*t though. 9 times out of 10, regardless of what info you provide up front (either through menu navigation or verbal input), the rep on the other side will ask you to repeat it all. Most IVR systems simply provide generic team-based call routing. All that other crap they ask you to put in is useless unless they have an integrated management app that displays that input on the computer when the rep answers the call (something I've personally been involved in, but it's hella expensive to do).


Correct. Which is why most places don't have anything that fancy. The questions being asked serve the purpose of routing you to the correct group of people to address the issue you're calling about. It's not perfect, but it really is better than just calling to one big pool of tier 1 people and then having them try to figure out how to help you, fail miserably, then try to figure out who to send you to, resulting in you being on hold eternally and in some cases ending out in a circle.

To be fair, sometimes the automated menus will do that too, but at least they are efficient about it. And sometimes, one of the menu items exactly matches the reason you're calling and you just press a couple buttons, phone rings and go right to someone who can help you. That doesn't happen often, but every once in awhile it does.

To me, the more irritating part is that since I'm one of those people who generally attempts to solve any problems I run into my self and only call for help as a last resort it's incredibly rare that the menu options actually apply to me. I don't call to make a payment, or to inquire about the balance of my account, or the status of whatever. Those are things I can generally accomplish without having to call the business. If I'm calling you, its because of some other problem that doesn't fit into the standard set of menu options. I suppose what boggles my mind is the fact that those menu options were derived based on the most common set of things people call those businesses for. Yeah. That's scary all by itself.
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#22 Aug 17 2012 at 8:04 PM Rating: Excellent
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My computer can beat up your computer.
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#23 Aug 17 2012 at 8:38 PM Rating: Excellent
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Dread Lörd Kaolian wrote:
My computer can beat up your computer.

Lies, my commodore 64 will win every time!! mostly by sitting on yours until it overheats.
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#24 Aug 17 2012 at 8:55 PM Rating: Excellent
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Tyrrant wrote:
Dread Lörd Kaolian wrote:
My computer can beat up your computer.

Lies, my commodore 64 will win every time!! mostly by sitting on yours until it overheats.


Heh, my existing water cooling loop is so overbuilt that would be a very long wait for you. The new one I am building is even moreso.
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#25 Aug 17 2012 at 9:04 PM Rating: Good
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Watercooling is a waste. I just stick my components together in a glob of thermal paste.
#26 Aug 18 2012 at 12:29 AM Rating: Excellent
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Actually, thermal paste over a certain thickness essentially becomes an insulator. If you wanted to go a step above water cooling, you do mineral oil immersion. That gets kind of really expensive quickly though
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#27 Aug 18 2012 at 1:30 AM Rating: Excellent
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Dread Lörd Kaolian wrote:
Tyrrant wrote:
Dread Lörd Kaolian wrote:
My computer can beat up your computer.

Lies, my commodore 64 will win every time!! mostly by sitting on yours until it overheats.


Heh, my existing water cooling loop is so overbuilt that would be a very long wait for you. The new one I am building is even moreso.

I read an alma post and am so bored I can wait.
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#28 Aug 18 2012 at 2:59 AM Rating: Good
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Dread Lörd Kaolian wrote:
Actually, thermal paste over a certain thickness essentially becomes an insulator. If you wanted to go a step above water cooling, you do mineral oil immersion. That gets kind of really expensive quickly though

OH I know. I just know some hardware gurus who go absolutely ******* insane if you mention anything about putting more than a grain of rice of paste on your cpu, so I thought I'd be pushing your buttons with that comment.

Technically it's not an insulator, but it's less conductive than metal on metal. Metal beats paste, but paste beats air.
#29 Aug 18 2012 at 10:18 AM Rating: Decent
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Another thing that I hate about automated systems..

"Please say a word or short phrase in what you need assistance with"

"Auto Loan"

"I'm sorry, I couldn't quite understand that"

"Au-to Loan"

"I'm sorry, I couldn't quite understand that"

#$%@^!&!! "AU-TO LOAN!!"

"Ok, auto insurance, right?!
Smiley: mad
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#30 Aug 18 2012 at 4:21 PM Rating: Excellent
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Allegory wrote:
Dread Lörd Kaolian wrote:
Actually, thermal paste over a certain thickness essentially becomes an insulator. If you wanted to go a step above water cooling, you do mineral oil immersion. That gets kind of really expensive quickly though

OH I know. I just know some hardware gurus who go absolutely batsh*t insane if you mention anything about putting more than a grain of rice of paste on your cpu, so I thought I'd be pushing your buttons with that comment.

Technically it's not an insulator, but it's less conductive than metal on metal. Metal beats paste, but paste beats air.


The real hardcore cooling nerds don't use thermal paste anymore anyways for CPU's. They use this: http://www.performance-pcs.com/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=46_58_1097&products_id=34666

Its basically a low melt point metal that literally melts and flows in between the CPU and the cooler. Installing it is scary the first time, as it involves disabling your built in motherboard CPU overtemp protection, and running your computer until the metal melts and flows correctly. I know one "special" individual that decided to ignore the instructions and not use the containment layers and ended up somehow running the metal down into his CPU socket, which rendered the motherboard very, very unhappy. But if you do it right you get a 2 degree drop in overall temperatures on the CPU block

Technically anything that insulates is an insulator. Air can be an insulator in the right circumstances.
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#31 Aug 18 2012 at 6:06 PM Rating: Excellent
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I've been using this as a thermal compound.

When things start smelling delicious, I know it's time to dial back on the gaming.
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#32 Aug 18 2012 at 6:09 PM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
I've been using this as a thermal compound.

When things start smelling delicious, I know it's time to dial back on the gaming.
Also works quite well as sunblock.
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#33 Aug 18 2012 at 6:54 PM Rating: Decent
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Dread Lörd Kaolian wrote:
But if you do it right you get a 2 degree drop in overall temperatures on the CPU block


ZOMG RLY!? Two whole degrees? Smiley: bah
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gbaji wrote:
You guys keep tossing facts out there like they mean something.


#34 Aug 19 2012 at 11:39 AM Rating: Good
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lolgaxe wrote:
Jophiel wrote:
I've been using this as a thermal compound.

When things start smelling delicious, I know it's time to dial back on the gaming.
Also works quite well as sunblock.
I miss Premium. Smiley: frown
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#35 Aug 19 2012 at 1:32 PM Rating: Good
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lolgaxe wrote:
Jophiel wrote:
I've been using this as a thermal compound.

When things start smelling delicious, I know it's time to dial back on the gaming.
Also works quite well as sunblock.
I miss Premium. Smiley: frown

I have Premium but it just isn't the same anymore. It no longer opens doors for me or sends me flowers. I'm certain that when we're making sweet love it's thinking about other posters. Smiley: frown
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#37 Aug 26 2012 at 11:54 AM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
I was expecting...
I finally completed one level in Mann Up mode, with a PUG. It's difficult to do so when you get people constantly leaving, instead of trying to adjust tactics and work as a team.
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