Apple's Industry-Leading Tech Support Satisfaction Declines
According to a new study that was recently released, Apple’s phone-based tech support continues to remain the best in the industry but complains regarding wait times and call automation have caused a decline in customer satisfaction. The results are based on data from an ongoing study conducted by Vocalabs and show the quality of Apple’s phone support has declined substantially over the past year and a half. Apparently, it’s slowly sinking to reported levels of its competitors, no longer providing superior support.
The study was conducted as part of the research firm’s National Customer Service Survey, where 4,852 customers were interviewed between May 2008 and December 2011, each being polled on various service quality metrics regarding tech support calls to Apple, Dell, and HP. According to Peter U. Leppik, President and CEO of Vocalabs, “Apple was far and away the leader in technical support quality” but “in the end of 2011, the company slipped to merely [being] ahead of its competition in certain metrics, and with a downward trend. If this trend continues, Apple could even be trailing in support quality by the end of 2012.”
The company, which reached a peak in early 2010 has shown a 19% decline of customers who were “very satisfied” with their call, compared to the 5% and 2% drops in call satisfaction from Dell and HP respectively. The problem resolution aspect is also on the decline as the Mac maker showed a 17 point drop in problems solved over the phone, ultimately leaving one out of every two issues unresolved. The results bring Apple down to being within four points of Dell’s 46% rate of problem resolution and three points of HP’s 47%. Furthermore, in some cases, Apple has even been surpassed by its competitors, as in the 20 point increase in customers who didn’t experience problems with the company’s interactive voice response system.
Overall, the Cupertino California company has seen a drop in almost every surveyed area over the past 18 months, including the likelihood to repurchase, agent satisfaction, reaching an agent, as well as a rise in customers who noted problems with Apple’s call automation and wait time. The results are in no way signifying the death of Apple support as the company remains the industry leader in offering a satisfying problem resolution experience.