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Nov 21, 2012 12:26 PM

KFC-Customer Service-Do they care?

I ask as I went to KFC twice in the last six months, same outlet at about 7:00 PM. Both times they had no Original Recipe Chicken and only offered to sub Extra Crispy. Bummer, not sure how that can happen at a Chicken place but it is a pain as I did drive out of the way.

Anyway, I called the complaint line which was useless as it was all auto-mated and it was difficult to describe the problem. On both occasions, I used the internet to tell them of the problem and filled out the box that "I would like a response" , well no response. Not sure why they ask if they don't intend to do anything.

About a month ago I tried another outlet and after paying for the meal, the cashier (who was not wearing gloves) turned around and grabbed the chicken pieces with his hand. I asked for a refund and left.

This time I made a few calls to corporate and quickly explained the problem and again they said an area person would contact to get the details. They never did....

Very disappointing but I guess they are more concerned with how they are perceived in China.

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  1. Bothered you so much you went back to the same place at the same hour.

    7:00pm is just a bit before closing. You say they only offered to sub crispy - what else would you have them do? Make a fresh batch for you? Going to wait?

    A sfor touching food with bare hands, you must be young because for most of my life food handlers handled food. This whole nonsensical glove thing is a recent development.

    7 Replies
    1. re: FrankJBN

      Sorry if my behavior and gripe does not reach a level you find relevant but on my way home from work, I do expect a Chicken restaurant to have chicken especially one that closes at 10:00 PM

      Yes a fresh batch would be nice....novel idea, fresh food and yes perhaps I would have waited.

      Glad you find safe handling of food "nonsensical" I guess I am being a pest if I prefer the person that accepts money from people at the register to not reach in afterwards and grab my food with their bare hand

      I do think I was most disenchanted by the company not seeing fit to answer the customer complaints that they claim are so valuable and that they promise to answer. I would have been quite happy if KFC had answered me and told me the food handling in question was acceptable.

      1. re: cstumiller

        Aloha - don't worry. It happened here too. To make a long story short I did the automated and then got a real person who gave me the same answer. I never got a call from area management nor the manager of the branch itself. I eat their food maybe once a year. I don't think they have to care.

        1. re: cstumiller

          You are right to be unhappy with KFC on both accounts. Your experience is like going to McDonald's and them announcing, "Gee, we've ran out of hamburgers."

          They should have asked if you'd be willing to wait for the original recipe to be done. I have to imagine some original was already in the works. They should have handled your food with gloves if that is their policy to do so, too.

          Rather than going to the national complaint line, I would next time ask for the manager on duty at the time and complain to him or her. That individual should be empowered to give you a coupon for free food the next time, or in some way make things up to you.

          On a side note, don't you live somewhere that you can find better friend chicken than KFC? I admit that I can understand having a soft spot for the Colonel, however.

            1. re: EarlyBird

              As far as takeout goes, I can only think of KFC (but there isn't one really close to my house) or the grocery store for fried chicken. It's not really a "thing" where I live.

            2. re: cstumiller

              IMHO you are fully justified for your feelings. Cash and food do NOT mix. Getting close to closing time does NOT excuse a firm from not having their fuill menu available. I once pulled into a drive through Nathans and was told that they were closing...15 minutes before the posted closing time. BTW...that particular outlet is now permanently closed.

              You have my vote

              1. re: njmarshall55

                Many times the "were about to close" is about employees not wanting to work any later than they have to, of course. It's not right, though.

          1. Interesting discussion on KFC. I like the original recipe but rarely get it because they are usually out at our local franchise. It is almost to the point where they just cook it on demand and if you are willing to wait, they will fry it fresh but if you don't want to wait, you either get the extra crispy or go somewhere else.

            1. I gave up on that $h*t. They don't care and the product sucks. I go to Church's and Popeyes for chain chicken.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Samalicious

                Yup. I also gave up on KFC's mix of sub-par food and surly service. There's a Popeyes near me where the manager periodically checks the chicken that's under the heat lamps. If the pieces have been there too long, he throws them out. Onion rings have to be fried fresh; they're not kept und lamps AT ALL. If they're ever short on spicy or mild pieces, they say it will be fried fresh in 5-10 minutes.

              2. I'll agree with everyone that food should be special when eaten...I'm an over the road truck driver and I can tell you I've seen some pretty nasty food out there....Love chicken wings and never got one at KFC that it didn't have a broken wing bone...Can anyone explain this???? Thanks

                1. Call and speak to the manager if you have a problem. Calling corporate is so tacky, if you have an issue talk to someone there that can fix it without getting his/her 5 bosses involved.

                  9 Replies
                  1. re: joe777cool

                    Sorry Joe...I did speak to the purported manager on duty. I fail to see why calling corporate is "tacky". Funny how KFC and many other chains put numbers to call on the receipts...

                    1. re: cstumiller

                      Agreed. However , they are both eminence front numbers. No one is really there , no one cares.
                      Nevertheless , they are numbers.
                      Irregardless, call either , if you get an answer , the local manager will tell you to f*** o** , only if they answer though (bonus) ,or corporate will send you a coupon for 15% off your next order , and only if they want to, that after your lovely on hold Muzak for 20 min. YUM Brands. Whoopee. BOFG's.
                      YMMV , but highly unlikely.

                      1. re: cstumiller

                        why is it tacky? are you looking to get people in trouble or just trying to get your meal right? is running out of 1 type of chicken really that bothersome that you need to go up the corporate ladder to let them know? if its later on in the evening you are probably dealing with a 20 year old shift leader/key holder and not someone who really has much authority. call the store the next day and deal with someone who can make it right, not contact some 800 number and have it filter down from the vp to the rvp to the dm to the gm.....if you have an issue at work do 3 levels of management know about it?

                        In the first situation they ran out of one type of chicken, get over it! In the second situation a (17 year old kid in all likely hood) did somethig stupid. If I were you I would have told him that I would like a new meal and to make sure he was wearing gloves ad that is the law and would have been done with it. Its not in me to try and get people in trouble for such minor issues.

                        On a side note, many chain restaurants use a service that keeps track of customer complaints. If a complaint comes in it will show how many complaints a customer has filed - and people that frequently complain aren't taken seriously.

                        1. re: joe777cool

                          PLEASE NO ONE HIT REPORT

                          #1 KFC is in an advertised business,this as a contract with the public isn't a secret.
                          YES they should deliver the menu as advertised period!!! When they can't offer the menu or better,IT IS NOT ON THE PATRON.
                          Attitude aside KFC is the obligatory subject here,OP included and aside.
                          The issue is now "principle",and at every level KFC should deliver,,,not IGNORE
                          not the patron pay,,,for ,,,what ??? hello!!!

                          1. re: lcool

                            I am utterly confused by your post. Restaurants run out of menu items ALL THE TIME, what "contract with the public" are they breaking? Are you going to tell me that you havent been to a McDonalds that has (temporarily) been out of fries, a Dunkin Donuts that was out of chocolate frosted donuts, or a Subway that was out of meatballs? I went to BK a week ago on my way into work only to be told that their new Cinnabon Mini's would be a 10 minute wait because they were out.
                            Was I bummed? Sure. However, I understand that sometimes places run out because there is no perfect science to the restaurant industry.

                            If KFC made double the amount of chicken they wouldnt run out, but guess what.....the OP would have gone something like "I drove out of my way to get cold rubbery chicken." Plus with all the extra waste that $19.99 bucket would be $21.99.

                            In fact the OP has a post that exactly describes my point:

                            "Westchester pizza slices-anyplace have it fresh

                            looking for individual slices that are moving and so fresh that they don't "reheat". Seems like even the busy places at lunchtime are serving pies made in the morning."

                            Those pizzas places dont run out of slices - because they premake their pizzas!!!!

                            1. re: joe777cool

                              I do not agree with the KFC example at all.The menu is short,all pre done,waiting in the walk in.
                              A one of business is not a comparable "business model" to a FRANCHISE and all of its ensuing rules of operation set by corporate.
                              Near us DC to Baltimore to Frederick the advertised hours of operation are just that,offer to cook to order until closing.If the location has whatever woe,labor to clean up etc after the advertised hours of operation that is on the franchise not the customer.We don't do stuff like KFC or Popeyes or Mcd's often but I have never heard "we are out" within the hours of their choosing,always it will be X amount of time while we cook yours.A simple trip to the walk in and deep fryer.As a matter of fact I am very likely to order something that isn't under the lamp,
                              knowing it will be fresher.Somewhere shutting down the kitchen early or before closing by 10 minutes isn't the same as 7:00 PM and no offer to cook fresh.This KFC store is pretty defenseless at dinner hour.

                              1. re: lcool

                                I am really having trouble making sense of your point, but I see some key assumptions. First, fried chicken takes awhile to cook. I dont know exactly how long it takes KFC to make a batch of original recipe, but I would bet its at least 10 minutes and I highly doubt the chicken is pre-prepared in the walkin as the coating would be a complete damp mess and not stick or cook correctly. There is also a huge difference between we are out (temporary) and we are out for the day and IMO it isnt clear exactly what happened here.

                                Yes, I have heard "we are out" on numerous occasions, and I don't agree that the hours of operation are some type of contract with the general public to guarantee the entire menu at all business hours. I have had Domino's run out of mushrooms, I have had Boston Market run out of ham, I have seen many chains run out of certain items. It happens all the time! Sometimes a product isnt ordered correctly, comes on the truck broken or back ordered, spoils, get run through quicker than normal etc etc etc. It happens, I work in the industry and eat out often, where as you admitted that you "don't do stuff like KFC or Popeyes or Mcd's often."

                                1. re: joe777cool

                                  KFC the original recipe,delivered to the walk in all ready to cook as is ALL of their fry product.To be out of THE SIGNATURE chicken,TWICE at 7:00 PM is preposterous.
                                  To make excuses for the store is a stretch for me.I am more inclined to think either they are too lazy to cook or have already miscalculated the sale potential of extra crispy and NEED to push it to save their mistake.
                                  To run out of a topping at a pizza place that has 20 or more isn't remotely equal to not having one crust when two are offered,twice at 7:00 PM...dinner
                                  At 9:55 PM with a 10:00 PM close or something like that I'll give some slack to your position and excuses.But 7:00 PM ,just no way.Now if KFC has no interest in the franchise that's fine with me.I can eat somewhere else and the brand can continue to shrink along with the value of the franchise.

                                  1. re: lcool

                                    I think we can agree on this position. Shit happens, but to repeatedly run out of their signature product in the middle of dinner is not smart business.