Sadly, I went to Digiprint Levy branch today and I wish that the universe could have misdirected me to go buy a geyser instead.
The Digiprint Managing Director called me to clarify what had happened yesterday. He explained that Digiprint is still a young company only 3 years old but experiencing insurmountable growth. In supporting Zambian developmental growth, Digiprint has hired a lot of Zambian young people. The MD apologised for the bad experience and promised to speak to his staff about the incidence in order to avoid repetition in the future. The MD appreciated the feedback received as well as the tweets and this particular article. Digiprint recently won the award for best Xerox Distributor in all of Africa beating the likes of Kenya and many others. Therefore, this article is only meant to highlight the customer service delivery aspect in the hopes of keeping Zambian businesses accountable to their customers.
***End of update***
If you’re a living, breathing, money-spending human being, then YOU ARE A CUSTOMER. It doesn’t matter how much money you spend or for what purpose, the simple fact that you’re giving money and there is another party receiving it makes you a customer!
At one point or another, all of us have encountered a rude, unfriendly or downright condescending service experience. In the Zambian context, this might be every day of your life. Enter Digipint Levy branch, nobody in-person stepped up to fix a bad situation today. Digiprint is a digital printing company and is the authorised distributor for Xerox in Zambia.
They’re pretty good at what they do, known for higher prices among competitors but still a preferred choice among many because of high standards, even me once-upon-a-time.
Below are the 5 bad customer service lessons I learnt from Digiprint Levy branch’s customer service delivery:
- Your time is not important – it only took them over 10 minutes to download a 221KB PDF file (for emphasis- KB is smaller than MB or GB)
- Business hours are for staff interaction– about 5 staff members casually chatted among themselves while customers lined up waiting to be served
- Withholding the truth is not bad- a 7 to 8 minute job turned out to be more than an hour. No apology offered for misleading a customer
- Teamwork is a strange notion– one staff member can handle everything while 5 tell stories to each other
- Managerial positions don’t make a difference- complaining to the manager doesn’t yield solutions. In fact, it turned out that the manager was observing the fiasco from her window the whole time and didn`t do anything
Never leave an establishment unhappy without informing management. In spite of this, I got a non-satisfactory face-to-face response from the manager. But alas, another response (perhaps more official) landed in my email from the Creative Development Manager as I wrote this article. Summarised points are below starting with what can be appreciated from the email:
- Apology & follow up- “Sorry about your bad experience in our shop today… we strive for First Class service”
- Ownership– “our shop… we… etc”
- Explanation– “delay in downloading due to viruses on front desk computer”
- Solution– freebie 100 business cards designed to my taste if I go back
Turn-Offs from Manager’s Email
- Uncertainty: don’t address a situation if you’re not sure what happened
- Blame-game: “this person was supposed to have done ABC but they were unavailable”
- Too much information (TMI)- It’s not useful to know what happened months ago when the business ran out of paper and charged ABC for so and so quality
- Non-Remedial- what if I don’t want to go back to Digiprint Levy and I don’t care about the cards anymore? Please note, I said what if!
Anyway, this is as objective as I can be for now. Needless to say, I took to Twitter during this whole ordeal with photos for evidence being live-tweeted. Interestingly, there was also another complaint of delays at Digiprint on their timeline, although, that might have been the Digiprint Arcades location.
I’ve frequented Digiprint for most of my printing jobs even referring friends before while their service was barely ok. Perhaps First Class service is for First Class customers who have a secret code.
Have you had any horrific customer service experiences you’d like to share? Please hit us up and let us know.