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Econet fixes website access issue. Our thoughts on customer support

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The Econet website

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The Econet websiteLast week, we complained that we couldn’t connect to the Econet websites unless we used an Econet Internet connection. We don’t use Econet for Internet at the office and we write about the mobile operator regularly so you can understand how it affected us. We were also not happy that this had gone on for months despite notifying Econet about it.

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It was fixed, within 48 hours. We complained loud about it so we felt it’s only fair to acknowledge this.

The article got the attention of Liquid Telecom group technical director, Ben Roberts, who immediately assured us with the comment “I will make sure it is fixed. Nobody has brought it to my teams attention.”

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Our article also received comments from ZOL CEO, David Behr who took the opportunity to explain how the Zimbabwe Internet Exchange (ZINX) works. ZOL is one of Zimbabwe’s biggest Internet Service Providers. We all learnt something from the numerous comments by people affected by the issue.

Yes, it took an article to get the issue fixed. And it’s not Econet that made the move to fix it; it’s a technical director from Econet’s upstream bandwidth provider. Indeed Liquid Telecom is an Econet company but this shows you how unresponsive the local Econet support/tech people are; a director at Liquid had to “Hey Econet buddies, please fix that for your customers?”

Econet has a customer care issue. It’s not just a perception we, Techzim readers, or the general subscribers have. It’s real.

The unavailability of the Econet call center for example is widely known and talked about around. Personally, the times I have needed Econet to fix something with my mobile service, I have had to call the call center about 5 times before anyone is available to help. And each time I’m put on hold until the line terminates some several minutes later. The few lucky times an agent attends the call, they say something like “Let me look at the problem and call you back”. I have never been lucky enough to get the call back. And because of this, I never the call the Econet call center unless it’s to do with overcharging my account.

And no, we’re not saying Telecel, or NetOne, or the new entrants are any better. The truth is we don’t know. Econet is the largest telecoms provider in Zimbabwe and has about 70% of the mobile phone market right now. When Econet does something wrong, it’s noticed by 70% of Zimbabwe’s mobile phone users. Some 5.5 million subscribers get mad.

We wonder sometimes if this is an issue Econet is aware of. We were convinced the large ‘state of the art’ call center launched last year would help but it clearly didn’t. The situation just seems to go on like that with little acknowledgement from Econet that they at least know about the problems and would like to fixed them.

Shareholders are happy though, that certainly matters more, right? At the end of the day, it’s a business.

Please share your thoughts on this (and your experience with your mobile provider) in the comments below.


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8 thoughts on “Econet fixes website access issue. Our thoughts on customer support

  1. At least Ben got it fixed as promised and I hope he goes further by helping those sleeping on the job to wake up. lol

  2. For sure econet has a customer support issue. If you go to their shops, there are long and winding queues which do not end. If you dial the call centre at night they are closed. if you dial during the day, you are put on waiting util you get tired. Surely someone at econet needs to do something!

  3. Ben

    Again thanx for fixing that, but can you go further and sort out your techies and helpdesk people in Zim. They are a disgrace, l had the unfortunate moment of visiting them when l wanted my internet sorted. l never went back there again!

  4. econet service is generally bad , no call centre t respond to our cncerns and also you can spent the whole day trying to juice up one card , def i think we will rely on telecel for our quick activities at the same time its very cheap and has got a lot beettr promotions

  5. i have had the pleasure of accessing various companie CS from UK,India,SA,USA and must say Econet is the WORST ever,dial 111 is a joke,the biggest joke!…when you get through to them,their agents are poorly trained and hardly fix the query for you,they promise to call back,which of course they never do!…I have had to travel from outside hre just to vist their centres coz foning them is OUT of the equation…they should be aware of this by now but hey,is somebody sleeping on the job?…they should get some advise from Multichoice call center for it works like magic…

  6. I use ZOL for email service. I am failing to access or send emails when I use an
    Africom CDMA dongle.

    Using Outlook I get the error message to the effect that
    Outlook cannot reach my ISP

    When I try Webmail I get the following error message:

    “The connection has timed out

    The server at oldwebmail.zol.co.zw is taking too long to
    respond.”

    When I switch over to Telone ADSL I immediately get
    access using Outlook and Webmail.  I tried this several times on different days.

    The Africom dongle gives me access to all other sites
    that I have tried except ZOL webmail.

    A colleague who was Africom for both email service and connectivity suddenly failed to send emails when he switched connectivity to Telone ADSL. He called Africom several times and was given new setting- only to find out his emails go into a bottomless pit- they do not reach their recipient. Several follows did not yield any result.

    I do NOT expect Africom to resolve my problem.
    So I am now looking for an alternative back up service provider to Telone ADSL.

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