Customer Service Review: Walgreens
So you know how I’m a stickler for customer service? I have a tendency to tweet when I receive bad customer service. I also tweet when I get awesome customer service. Well…this time I got some good and some bad. It all happened the other day when I had to get a different dosage for my prescription. I needed to take 1 1/2 pills a day instead of 1. It wasn’t a huge deal, or so I thought.
I received an automated message from Walgreens that my prescription couldn’t be filled because of something with the insurance. Not a big deal really, I figured I would just call them and find out what was going on. After all, I waited until I only had one pill left to call them. So I guess it was a big deal, but not a I’m-gonna-freak-out-if-I-can’t-get-my-meds kinda deal. I spoke with a pharmacy tech, hoping that she could just tell me what the call was about and if there was anything I could do. It turns out that my crappy, expensive private insurance won’t cover more than 1 pill a day. Go figure. “So what do I do”, I ask. She starts to explain again about the insurance denying coverage. I interrupted her and I tell her I understand that, but what are my options since I am down to 1 pill. Usually, they will give you up to 3 pills until you get authorization so you don’t have to skip any doses. She didn’t offer that. She got really defensive and said there was nothing she could do and I would have to speak with my doctor and the insurance company. Okay, not a problem. Then she says I can purchase a couple pills to hold me over.
This is when things get really wonky. I got the feeling the first time I interrupted her that she was overreacting to whatever she was thinking I was saying, or moreover how I was saying it. I wasn’t mad or sad or crying or upset or distressed. As a matter of fact, I was smiling. I asked her how much a couple pills would be and she asked me how many I would want. Since she already said “a couple”, I assumed she had a number in mind. But we were going around in circles. She kept saying the same thing and I was confused as to why she was being so cranky with me and why “a couple” wasn’t 2. It spiraled out of control quickly. I tried to stop her from freaking out on me but obviously interrupting her repeating herself was some sort of trigger. She accused me saying, “Well YOU are the one getting upset!” I laughed and told her I wasn’t upset. I was about to tell her that she gives horrible customer service and suggest she invests in some training, but instead asked to speak with her supervisor. Without so much as a “Sure. Hang on,” she put me on hold. If it weren’t for the hold music, I would’ve thought she hung up on me.
I was on hold for 30 minutes. That’s right. On. Hold. THIRTY. Minutes.
I hung up, which I assume she was wanting. But what she didn’t count on is that I know Walgreens well enough to know that if I tweet about it, they will respond.
And what do you know? Someone tweeted to me just a few hours later.
A couple emails with Kristen and later that afternoon, the manager at the offending Walgreens called me. That was quick! I wasn’t expecting word for 2 days. The manager asked about the situation and apologized for the misunderstanding and the hold time. He admitted she should have called him to pick up if the pharmacy manager was too busy. I explained to him that it felt as though I was the bill collector and she had no money and was freaking out. It seemed to me that maybe she needed further customer service training. Also, I forgot I live in Florida, not Oregon, which makes a huge difference in expectations of relations.
So with the bad, so comes the good. Walgreens stepped up and provided (almost) immediate customer care. Once again, I applaud Walgreens for excellent customer management.