Letters To No One: A Response From Sirius / XM

May 26, 2010

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Ever since the publication of my letter to Sirius / XM, I’ve been receiving both feedback from readers and e-mails from customer service representatives at the satellite radio behemoth. As it turns out, sometimes copying and pasting a nasty e-mail into a blog post can expedite the handling of one’s claims against a major corporation!

On Saturday afternoon I received a message from Sirius XM Corporate Customer Relations in regards to the escalation I asked for on my account. I was told by “Charlene” that she would like to help me resolve the issue, and she offered a phone number as well as her work schedule. I thought about calling her back to discuss my issue, but since my radio miraculously started working again on the morning of the 19th, I figured I might not want to push my luck. I though, “I’ll just enjoy this last month of service and then cancel my subscription.”

On Monday, just as I was preparing to take my lunch break, I received a second e-mail. This one said, “We are writing to you with regards to your Sirius XM account. We would like to inform you that our Corporate Customer Relations Department has tried to contact you and were unsuccessful in doing so. Please take note of the following dates and times our attempts were made…We ask that you please contact …the number below.” This message was signed by “Jenna”. I decided this time not to ignore the message, but to take them up on their offer and speak with the department.

When I called the number, I was greeted by “Angie”. She was very nice, and I could tell immediately upon her answering my call that she understood English. She listened patiently as I detailed my experience on the phone last week, and appeared to be taking notes in order to better understand my situation and alleviate my concerns about the service. I was very excited when she took down my name and address, because I thought maybe she’d be sending me something in the mail to make up for the huge PR disaster that could occur were I to continue exposing their shitty business practices on the Internet. Then something horrible happened.

Apparently she was taking down my name and address because she was having trouble accessing my account. That’s when we both realized that she was a employee of Sirius Radio’s Customer Relations Department, and my subscription was placed through XM Radio. I was more than disappointed when she said she was going to have to transfer me to someone with her exact job description at XM. I thanked her for her consideration and kindness, and then waited to be transferred.

The person who picked up the phone was named Manuel or Matteo or something. He had a pretty good grasp on the English language, but wasn’t nearly as pleasant to converse with as Angie. Once he verified my account, I was told that the person with whom I spoke last week was going to be dealt with by the company. I was not allowed to hear how she would be reprimanded, but I was told that XM does not stand for that kind of poor customer support and does not want anyone to feel how I felt following my phone experience. Then he asked me a few more questions and asked if there was anything else I wanted.

Therein lies the problem with these customer relations outreach phone calls. What am I supposed to do in that position? Am I supposed to demand further satisfaction like some kind of cheap bastard? “You know what you can do Manuel, why don’t you comp the next six months of my service.” I’m not going to say that. I don’t want to sound like a spoiled brat who wants free shit. But at the same time, I think for all the frustration I’ve felt during the past two terrible, annoying conversations with Sirius / XM support representatives I should have been offered something more than an unverifiable claim about reprimanding the woman I spoke to last week. What’s wrong with someone on the company’s end saying, “You mentioned earlier that you have one radio you use both in your car and at home. Tell you what, we’ll send you a free radio so you don’t have to keep transporting it back and forth.” Wow, okay, now I feel better about renewing my subscription. Don’t just remind me that my subscription ends next month and say “Have a nice day.” That doesn’t make me feel any better about the fact that your company charged my bank account without warning, took away my service without warning, and then completely misrepresented itself during the initial support call. That’s bullshit. I DEMAND SATISFACTION.

This isn’t over, Sirius / XM. And I had better get some notice before my account is automatically charged again, or this whole thing is going to start over, and I’ll keep milking it on my website until you do something to demonstrate your commitment to quality customer service.

Warm Regards,
Evan

1 comment

  1. |

    Completely horrible experience in dealing with SiriusXM, bought a new car and I’ve spent the last 2 months trying to upgrade to a paid premier (only for Stern) and it’s an beat down of an experience. Here’s my email to their corporate support:

    I have a new vehicle that came with a 3-month trial for SiriusXM. Immediately, I called listener care and asked to pay to upgrade to a full premium package. I spent countless hours with out-sourced call centers all telling me there was no way to upgrade an account. Imagine that. Here I am, offering to pay siriusXM money, and you don’t want it. I spent a total of 12 hours over the course of a month and half dealing with completely incompetent support people. Finally, in one final last ditch effort, for once in all of my experiences with SiriusXM I had the opportunity to actually get through to someone who understood my dilemma, and patiently worked to get my account upgraded. No surprise that she was based in Virginia, and regrettably I wish I could remember her name because she should be recognized as an outstanding employee and a role-model for what customer support should be.

    One week later, while driving to work, my premier subscription completely stopped and reverted back to the 3-day trial. Dreading what would be the inevitable, I’ve now spent an additional 2 hours of my life dealing with horrific out-sourced customer service who apparently don’t want to take my money. Look, I want to pay you for an account. I really do. Actually the only reason why I do is because of Howard Stern. I actually canceled an account with your company once before because of the horrible support, but here I am, like an abuse victim who can’t leave their abuser. I use that analogy because it’s true. Each time I’m left dealing with your support (except for that one pleasant experience) I truly feel battered and beaten down.

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