About a month ago I started experiencing an intermittent connection problem with my Sky Broadband connection. It would slow down to almost no connection at all, and sometimes disappear all together! I often work from home, I develop Mobile phone apps as well, I am a computer scientist – so – this is unacceptable to me. I called Sky, they sent BT, and they couldn’t fix it after 2 weeks of trying.
Now out in the ground outside my house I have a Virgin Media cable, and I thought to myself that it was worth a try to get that set up. After all 100Mb/sec sounds like Internet heaven to me, so I ordered it Thursday the 28th of June, and was impressed with the service I received in setting up my account, and even more impressed with the speed at which they could get a man to my house, it was scheduled to the 2nd of July.
The installation guy came as promised to my door, and after an inspection established that a two man team was needed, as there apparently was no connection into my home. He called up his supervisor and was told that a two man team would come later in the afternoon. I was even more impressed at this point – however this was the highest point it ever got to, as it drastically went down from here on!
No one turned up that day. At work the next day I decided to call the “Customer Service” to find out what had happened. This is a close-to-real-enough transcript of the conversation:
Automated Lady voice: Enter your account number
Me: (I did) #########
Indian male voice (IMV): Hallo Sir, what is you account number
Me: I already gave it
IMV: Sorry, but I need it again
Me: Here you are #########
IMV: Was it #########
IMV: Are you sure you are a customer?
Me: Yes, otherwise the installation guy probably wouldn’t come to my house yesterday…
IMV: And your address is?
I give it, and following a difficult time conveying my name to him, he finally decides to transfer me to his “supervisor”. After some wait he connects. He is a Male English Voice on a much better phone connection (MEV).
MEV: Hallo Sir, what is your account number?
Me: I already gave it twice…
MEV: I know. It can be frustrating. But I do need it again for digital privacy reasons…
Me: (Almost not resisting the temptation to call the error in that argument!) #########.
MEV: And you name, address, and password
Me: Give the information
MEV: I can see that the installer turned up yesterday
Me: I know
MEV: And a two man team will come today to your house.
Me: Really!! Do I need to be there? Why didn’t anybody call me, I gave all my phone numbers…
MEV: Yes, you ought to be there (and politely excuse that I weren’t told)
Me: Drives home from work in a hurry after just arriving…
Now I could understand this if they turned up. But they didn’t, so I called up “Customer Service” again shortly after 6PM the 3rd of June, and this is roughly what happened:
IndianGuy: Tells me I am not a customer
Me: Try and convince him I am
IndianGuy: Tells me I need to talk to sales, and transfer me
SalesGuy: Tells me I am a customer and that they will come on the 12th with a two man team. (A help person all in all)
Me: Asks if he can tell me why I was told that someone would come today, and why I was told I wasn’t a customer.
SalesGuy: Excuses the situation, doesn’t have any answers, so switch me over to “Customer Service” as they should have the answer to that
IndianGirl: Tells me I am not a customer
Me: I try and convince her
IndianGirl: Tells me that no installation is booked
Me: I tell her that the sales department just told me that there was on the 12th
IndianGirl: She talks to sales, and after that tells me that there indeed is, and that I had given her an old account number to begin with
Me: I ask her to give me the correct one
IndianGirl: Tells me she can’t over the phone
Me: I tell that I already received my number by mail and read it to her
IndianGirl: Tells me that is the correct new number, and claims that I didn’t give her it at the start
Me: Frown, and say I don’t have any other numbers, so couldn’t possibly have given her an old number
IndianGirl: Doesn’t say anything to that, and decides to ensure me that the two man installation team will come on the 12th.
So today is the 12th of July, and the two man team should come, but, only an hour ago a one man team turned up. I told him I expected two people. He excused himself, and went around the house and could confirm that it is a two man job. He called up management, and they told him that they would send a team later today.
Have I been here before?!
I really do hope they turn up today, and that I don’t have to call the dreaded “Customer Service”…
BTW – as a Computer Scientist with a PhD in Knowledge Representation – I might be tempter to offer my consultancy expertise to Virgin Media. There must be something wrong with redundant data and the internal methods when something isn’t a normal case!
— Update —
The managers came by, and they were really friendly and apologetic about the situation. They could verify that a two man job was needed, but the only thing they could do was to reschedule the job to the 24th of July. A “bit” annoying, but at least they did turn up this time.
The Saga will continue…
— Update 22-07-2012 —
A Virgin representative calls me up on a Sunday to tell me that the two man job has been delayed until the 26th, and reassure me that I will have the service that day.
— Update 26-07-2012 —
50% of a two man team turns up. The guy informs me that this is a two man team, and that he cannot do this on his own.
I start – forcefully – to tell him the history of this “odyssey” . He calls up his manager, and he angrily tells the manager off for sending him alone. After this he re-investigate the situation, and decides to do it on his own. It takes him 4 hours (it was scheduled to take less than an hour), and he manage to install it!
He was awesome, and I cannot praise his work enough…