The Human Element


Sean Nolan wrote to tell me a story that illustrates the weak link in many customer interaction systems:

So I'm waiting in line at Safeway to buy groceries. Like most supermarkets these days, they've got a loyalty card program and offer reasonable discounts at checkout for cardholders. An older man in front of me wants to purchase items that are on a card special, but doesn't have his card and can't remember his phone number. The clerk says, "hmm, wait a minute." He starts punching in phone numbers at random, and after a few tries gets a "hit" and uses it to apply the discount.

I wonder who just had hemorrhoid cream added to their past-purchases profile?

Gotta love that inevitable weak link in business intelligence systems.