We Didn’t Have To Bend Over Backwards To Return Our Wunder Unders

It’s not a stretch to call Lululemon’s recent recall of see-through yoga pants a fiasco. If there were ever a time to double-down on customer service, this was it.

And, StellaService data shows the company actually improved certain areas of its service performance during the high-volume period after the recall. In particular, the company was well prepared for questions about store policy, fitting for an influx of questions about returns.

StellaService places calls and emails to Lululemon’s customer service team on a daily basis, asking a mix of questions about products and store policy. To research the Lululemon recall, pre-fiasco is defined as Nov. 18 to March 17, while March 18 through April 7 defines the period the company handled recall inquiries.

First, it’s important to note that performance via phone was on par with pre-fiasco levels, a sign the company staffed up their call center appropriately.

But, there were a few hiccups in email performance during the high volume period.

Policy-related questions took 4.8 hours longer to receive a response than during the pre-fiasco period. And, Issue Resolution via email dropped off 13% on March 18 – the day of the announced recall, with 83% of those failed interactions being product-related. Still, there were bright spots in email performance, as Lululemon’s response time for product-related email inquiries improved 12% after the announcement.

Policy-related topics took longest to get a response after the announcement. For instance, Returns Process questions took more than 24 hours to receive a reply, while refund questions required 18 hours to be addressed by Lululemon’s team.

The good news is that while agents took longer to respond to policy related questions after the announcement, these inquiries were thoroughly addressed and resolved 89% of the time. Compare that to product-related email inquiries, which were resolved only 55% of the time.

It seems agents were more attentive to policy-related questions than those about product at this time. Even though they were faster at servicing shoppers’ product questions, the attention to detail wasn’t there.

Finally, refund processing time was only slightly longer in March – an average of 13 days versus 11.8 for the pre-fiasco period.

StellaService actually ordered and returned a pair of the “Wunder Under” pants (THE pants), and received a refund within 10 days of initiation, which was in line with pre-fiasco refund time for the region where the item was ordered.

Photo: lululemon athletica Flickr/Creative Commons

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