The Electrical Contractor Network

ECN Electrical Forum
Discussion Forums for Electricians, Inspectors and Related Professionals

Books, Tools and Test Equipment for Electrical and Construction Trades

Register Now!

Register Now!

We want your input!


2017 NEC and Related
2017 NEC
Now Available!

Recent Posts
Parking lot pole light swap....
by gfretwell
10/24/16 08:46 PM
International Wire Colour Codes
by Tjia1981
10/23/16 12:08 PM
Son of Sparky
by HotLine1
10/20/16 07:43 PM
Speaking of Plugmold ...
by gfretwell
10/17/16 02:37 PM
Broken battery charger? Check for cobwebs!
by gfretwell
10/17/16 02:30 PM
New in the Gallery:
12.5A through 0.75mm˛ flex (just out of curiosity)
Shout Box

Top Posters (30 Days)
gfretwell 14
HotLine1 7
ghost307 7
renosteinke 6
Potseal 4
Who's Online
0 registered (), 275 Guests and 5 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#25301 - 05/03/03 09:26 AM What would improve customer interaction?
BuggabooBren Offline

Registered: 11/15/01
Posts: 336
Loc: NM
If you had an opportunity to educate your customers before they called you so their time and yours would be spent most efficiently and effectively, what would want them to know? I'd like to know from both a residential service provider as well as an industrial service provider's viewpoint - what should the homeowner or the facility/building manager be familiar with or able to discuss with some level of understanding in order to get the job done quickly and correctly?

For example, when I was dispatching telephone repair & installation techs, I was often frustrated when a caller didn't know their location (large facility) and they'd know the general area but not the building number or the room number - afterall, they just drive there, park, walk through a door, turn left and unlock their door, why can't my service guy do the same? (tongue in cheek) They also often didn't know what kind of phone they had. Often they didn't know exactly what the problem was either or how often it occurred, or when it happened. I realize sometimes things can be a little fuzzy but as a person sitting across town hoping to send this individual some relief, it became apparent that if we told the caller that "I'll need this basic info - location by Area/Bldg/Rm, type of phone, description of the problem or failure and if possible, when or how often it occurs, and whether or not there was other service types of work being done nearby."

What would you ask your customer to be ready to provide you upon their request for your service?

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades
Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades
Arc Flash Clothing, Gloves, KneePads, Tool Belts, Pouches, Tool Carriers, etc. etc....

#25302 - 05/03/03 11:21 AM Re: What would improve customer interaction?
Roger Offline

Registered: 05/18/02
Posts: 1779
Loc: N.C.
Bren, I can relate. I have actually asked a customer to find out certain things after the original call explaining to them that this would save them money. This usually is taken well since you are showing concern in their interest. (of course there are always exceptions)

Another problem in commercial and industrial situations where there are maintenance personel, is that some may be able to give you precise info and actually help you or maybe perform most of the work themselves, or, on the otherhand give you bad info thinking they know more than they do.

I think asking as many questions with the knowledge of the customer considered is a key.

There will always be the situation where you will just have to go do the best you can with no info, and then defend your billing.


#25303 - 05/03/03 04:23 PM Re: What would improve customer interaction?
sparky Offline

Registered: 10/18/00
Posts: 5545
I have told many that having a plan costs less, which is usually the catalist for thier education.

Residentially speaking, the big hangup is usually lighting.

I will refer to lighting shops, who have lighting design people that will lay out a residence.

This works well, they'll spend all kinds of time in the showroom, then sell them a lighting package which i would rather not

IM(well....maybe not so humble) Opinion, a large majority of lighting fixtures are so flimsey they border being a saftey issue...
i'ts not worth 15-25% to be married to.

Or, as in the case of my last rough out, walk around with catalogs and a magic marker for 6 hrs with mama, while the husband (not interested) smoked camel after camel.

Yes i charged for the time, never lifted a tool (other than the marker), yet went home drained from the excruciating procrastination.

I just recieved a set of plans for another post & beam, the owner wishes 10 recessed lights , unfortunatley there is no cieling cavity.(just 2" T&G)

Again, the party in question needs to be confronted with zeroooo's before they take note.

Thus, i asked for an extended soffit, dragging all the other subs in with me, which resulted in a speedy response..

I'm just an EC,watching the whole construction world turning on a paper bearing greased with BS i guess....

#25304 - 05/04/03 02:49 PM Re: What would improve customer interaction?
nesparky Offline

Registered: 06/21/01
Posts: 650
Loc: omaha,ne
Just having a customer who has an idea of what the problem(s) is/are would help.
I have had several that just say that part of my house quit working. Some do not know where the panel is. I have also had those who did not know how to reset a GFI and could or did not follow direction to do so. One elderly lady could not even see the reset button on a GFI outlet.
I also had one customer who wanted me to fix his electrical while he was on an overseas trip. He said he could not meet me before he left and did not describe his problem(s)-- "Just fix it and we'll talk about your bill when I get back"
At least that job turned out easy and he did pay 65 days later.
The one who have very poor plans are also a big pain. A recent bid had only proposed office area walls for a remodel of an old church to 4 tenant offices. Was told the boiler was to be removed and new furnaces and RTU would be installed. GC did not know if they would be gas or electric yet. But he needed a firm bid.


ECN Electrical Forums - sponsored by Electrical Contractor Network - Electrical and Code Related Discussion for Electrical Contractors, Electricians, Inspectors, Instructors, Engineers and other related Professionals