Written by Swan Morrison
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Tuesday, 18 October 2016

image for Major Companies Consider Revision Of Recorded Messages For Customers Waiting For A Call To Be Answered
'No staff are currently available to take your call, so tough luck.'

A recent survey of its members by the UK consumer group, Which?, has identified the most annoying elements of recorded messages played to customers who are waiting for their calls to be answered.

The most irritating phrase contains a reassurance that the caller is a "valued customer".

It was not so much the statement that upset people but the clear lack of sincerity that was inevitable inherent in a recorded message that could be heard by anyone.

As a result, a new, more evidently sincere, recorded message is being trialled by several major companies in the south of England.

If no staff are available, callers hear the following:


Thank you for calling our company. No staff are currently available to take your call.

We're not going to tell you that your custom is valued. We don't know who you are yet, for God's sake. You might be some whinging complainer with a personality disorder - God knows we get enough of those in these days when every consumer believes they're the most important person in the world with a near psychopathic passion. You might even be an automated PPI scam for all we know.

If you're enormously rich and your call could lead to vastly increased profits for our company, then please press one on your keypad. You might be Richard Branson, for example. If you're Rupert Murdoch, however, just hang up now. Our company may be profit driven, but we're not without some sense of ethics and common decency.

When you press one on your keypad, we will log your number, so if you're pissing us about and try that stunt more than once, your calls will be blocked.

If one of our products has caused a big, big problem, then please press two on your keypad. For example, if we've sold you a mobile phone and it blew up, downing a 747 over the Atlantic, we might be able to come to some financial arrangement with you to keep your mouth shut.

If you're anybody else then you might like to just hang on until more of our customer care advisers turn up for work.

Any delay in having your call answered is your own fault anyway. You all complained when our call centres were in India. Well, at least our staff arrived on time in those days because the Indians have got a reliable train service. Now this call centre's in southern England, we're all at the mercy of those flat-capped luddites who staff Southern Rail.

Bring back Margaret Thatcher, we say. The rail union needs to be crushed in the way Thatcher crushed the NUM before the whole country gets taken over by unelected, self-interested, Britex voting, thickos with no grasp of the larger economic picture. Do they think their wages grow on trees that are independent of the financial viability of the companies they work for?

We want to add that we're not exactly disinterested in your custom, it's just that it probably doesn't matter if a few of you hang up and never contact us again as long as not too many of you follow suit.

Anyway, as you're paying for this call and it's probably cost you three quid already, you might want to hang up and try your luck again later.

If you'd like to hang on, we'll play you some distorted music that you probably wouldn't normally choose to listen to before we repeat the original message again. Enjoy.

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The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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