Twisted clock

How Long Is Too Long?

20130130-154639.jpgWhen you call an 800 number for technical support, how long should you be expected to remain on hold until someone talks to you to solve your problem?

I’m rebuilding my hard drive, a necessary nuisance with computers; so, I’m in the process of reinstalling all of my software, and I have a lot of software. I went to reinstall the Adobe CS 5 Production Bundle only to learn that Adobe has removed the download links from my user account. The FAQ said I should use the nonexistent download links in my account. So, after searching everywhere on their site, I called Adobe to find out where the links are hidden.

Be assured that upgrade links as well as the download and purchase links for their latest software are in your face at every turn. (And, can you imagine paying Adobe $50 a month to use their software “in the cloud?” I bet that’s a user nightmare!)

After negotiating the endless menu tree of Adobe’s phone system (“Please press 1 if you…”) I was told that my “approximate wait time is over 2 hours.”

What?! Did I just hear that correctly?! Two hours? Maybe they just say that to encourage people to hang up? So I carried the phone around as I went about my day.

Thank goodness the hold music was a collection of nice jazz.

I was appalled, which is generally my reaction to Adobe. This software package retails for nearly $2,000.00, and paying customers get treated like this?

Was only one person working technical support for the whole world?

Finally, after waiting on hold for over 5 hours — yes, five — I remembered that during my last, and only other encounter with Adobe customer support, I communicated with them through Twitter. I dug around and found their Twitter handle @Adobe Customer Care. I sent them a tweet asking my simple question.

Within about 20 minutes I got the correct answer with the link.

After successfully downloading the software, I finally hung up the phone. Total time on the phone waiting to talk to a live human being before I hung up: 5 hours, 43 minutes, and 47 seconds. That’s just nuts.

What message is Adobe sending to its customer base when:

  • Their online FAQ is inaccurate.
  • Their Contact Us number requires a hold time of greater than 5.5 hours (with no result).
  • They don’t even advertise their Adobe Customer Care twitter account (that I could find).

I have groused before about Adobe’s apparent indifference to their customers. Sadly, little has changed.