One Phone Call Really Can Make A Difference

May 03, 2011
Answering calls from consumers and businesses is a large part of what Operations staff does every day. Answering calls allows the BBB to keep our ear to the ground and hear about the latest scams, common concerns, point callers to various resources, and create and update reports. When dealing with businesses or consumers who are in the middle of a dispute, calls can be a bit time consuming and callers sometimes get heated. We certainly understand the frustration of being involved in a dispute and the BBB staff is here to do all that we can do to help consumers. Unfortunately, sometimes the best we can do is refer someone to a government or regulatory agency, or small claims court, in the hopes that the issue can be resolved at that level. Here are some things that may be helpful to know when calling our office:

You’re probably going to have to put it in writing. As our staff deals with a lot of information from many different sources, we’re more than likely going to ask for information in writing. It helps us ensure we’re getting all the information we need, the information we have is complete, and there are no mistakes made due to misinterpretation. We’re happy to listen to complaint concerns, responses to complaints, changes to business operations, etcetera, over the phone, but ultimately we need most information in writing.

We can get (lots of) information to you in almost any form. The fastest way for us to get information to or receive information from businesses and consumers is online or through email, so we will generally point consumers to specific places on our website, offer email information, or encourage responses and documentation to be sent through our online dispute resolution software. We can also send or receive information via mail or fax, or connect callers to our automated system to listen to reports. We are happy to send information in whichever format you prefer, or in multiple formats, so please let us know your preference. We generally try to give callers a referral agency to contact other than the BBB, an industry tip, and sometimes a list of Accredited Businesses, when applicable, so please ask what information we can provide for you.

We’re here to help … really! There is nothing more rewarding than hearing callers tell us that they avoided being scammed or received great service because of information we provided. And we also enjoy giving consumers and businesses information so they won’t be scammed out of their hard-earned money. It’s important for us to make a difference. Unfortunately, there are instances when our hands are tied. Staff members have to follow both local and national policy, and must remain neutral when giving out information. We can’t give our personal opinion, and we aren’t always the best organization to assist with a situation. When we can’t help, we give information to resources that can. And sometimes we just get thrown for a loop and have to do some digging to find out how to best handle something brought to our attention. Please be patient – we truly do want to help, even if we’re not the appropriate organization to get involved.

So give us a call! We’d love to hear from you. Just call: 519-673-3222 or email us at: