Service Is My Middle Name
Once upon a time not that long ago, I worked as a costumer service rep for a west coast insurance company. To say that I’m glad that I’m not doing that job anymore would be like Ted Kennedy saying he enjoys a drink every once in a while. The one good think about the job is that I learned more than I ever wanted to know about 1000s of complete strangers.
Of course I’m going to give you an example of a crazy call, but first I need to describe how the customer service shtick works for an HMO insurance. The first thing you should know is that there are only 3 reasons for anyone to call the customer service line at the insurance place that I worked at. If you need to change your doctor (it’s an HMO so you have a primary doctor), receive paperwork, or get a new ID card, by all means give us a call. If you need to know what is and isn’t covered, get off your lazy ass and read the schedule of benefits and explanation of benefits packet that you got when you signed up for the insurance. When you called me, or any of the people working customer service, and asked me about your coverage, I simply looked at the same book you received and read verbatim what it says to answer your question. No big secret, you lazy illiterate dummies.
Another thing I think you should know is that, your calls are not private. It’s not just you and one customer service agent. Often times when I or other people received unbelievable or funny calls, we would signal other people over to listen. I have quite a few good ones to share.
So it was another crappy day sitting on the phone, when my buddy J said as loud as he could into his microphone, “So, le me get this straight. You ran out of vaginal cream.”
He then turned the microphone around and did the silent laugh while pointing to his headset, signaling to me that he wanted me to listen in. Not needing to plug my headset into his phone, I put my phone out of commission so that I could finish hearing what he was talking about. Now usually the best way to piss people off on the phone is to just repeat what they are saying back to them so that they know how stupid they really sound. So I’m contently listening to my friend J repeat to this lady her troubles of running out of vaginal cream and not be able to get more because it was denied when ran through the insurance at the local pharmacy. J is really getting into this call now, probably because he got to say vaginal cream a dozen times as loud as he could, and he offered to call the company that handles the prescription benefits. He calls them and shortly after giving the prescription company the ladies information and telling them the problem, he receives the best news. The lady mail ordered a 3 month supply and can not refill her prescription until the three months are over. So this is how the rest of the call went with the lady and J.
J: Miss, I just spoke with the prescription company and they said that you ordered a three months supply…….Well mam’ they won’t authorize you getting more vaginal cream unless your doctor submits the authorization……Mam’ I understand that the three months supply of vaginal cream only lasted you two weeks, but you have to get a doctor to say it’s ok for you to use that much vaginal cream…..I’m very sorry…Is there any thing else I can help you with?.....hello?