OOOO – THIS is “Bad Business” writ large!
For many years, I have been a satisfied and loyal customer of Efax.COM and would happily stay with them for years to come, but I’ve just invested in a new phone system for my office, and that system includes Fax Service.
It’s not new news that telephone numbers are “Portable” meaning that it’s generally easy for a person to take a phone number with them when they change providers.
When I switched from Cricket to Verizon, this switch happened effortlessly.
When I switched my office line to Ring Central (Which I LOVE), the Ring Central Team was able to port our main telephone number without hassle AND without ANY disruption of service.
Because Ring Central offers Fax capabilty with their service, I no longer need to pay the $20/mth fee to EFax.
Of course, I assumed the Ring Central Team could pull this off just as smoothly as the main line, but NO!
They hit a wall – Efax would not release the number because I (Their long-time customer) had not followed their protocol which is deeply embedded in the their service agreement.
The protocol requires that:
- I terminate my service with Efax before they will agree to port a number thereby creating an “outage” of the functionality of the number for an unspecified period of time.
- I can ONLY port out a number that I owned and ported in when I initiated service – WHO would even think about this when signing up for Efax in this world of “portability”?
- My account must be paid current (It is!)
Additionally, they don’t make it easy to find out HOW to cancel their service.
In essence, Efax is of the mind that they want to make it VERY difficult for any of their customers to leave without pain.
THIS is bad business!
As a result of their “Bad Business,” the Pareto Realty Fax number will be changing thereby requiring us to change Websites, Letterhead, Business Cards etc.
Efax has made what could have been not much more than the ending of a pleasant experience with their company into a conversion of a raving fan into a very unhappy camper.
If you are in ANY kind of business, and a customer wishes to “move on,” making that transition difficult and painful is likely the WORST thing you could do.
Why would any organization want to turn a loyal customer whose experience has been great for years into an angry and disgruntled prior customer?
I would continue to be an advocate of Efax for years to come if it were not for this idiotic policy of theirs to hold the phone numbers (and hopefully retain customers) captive in such an extortive way?
Instead, I pick up my mega-phone and scream “I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore!”
When a business ends a customer relationship in this way, they have no way to measure the damage done.
How many potential new customers could you imagine Efax will fail to have as their string of shunned prior customers grows?
In business, we sometimes lose customers.
When they go, are they likely to refer business to you?
If not, why?