Thursday, May 04, 2017

Saved By The Swim


Subtitle: Was it National Idiots Day?

A day of Frustations.  3 examples for an unfortunately larger set from yesterday, Thursday May 04, 2017

Sandra's Story
Sandra had a job interview for a new job in Germany.  Her potential employer was just confused how Swiss applicants asked for high salaries.

Turns out the job is in a low cost part of Germany.  So "the poor salary" we can offer you is in line with the cost of living in this backwater.   Surely you want to come now?

Marcus' Story
I'm looking to externally host our Vintage Computer website as a contingency for our new home Internet Fibre connection being delayed.   I was recommended a company that could cope with the large storage and bandwidth requirements and started a web chat to confirm some basic facts before ordering.

Example Question:  What are the limits if any on #files and #max storage space?    Every question that was asked took 2 or more minutes to answer.  More than once a copy paste of a previous inadequate answer.   I was appalled that this was the 'technical hotline',  WTF would the 'non technical hotline' be good for I thought?  After over 20 minutes of getting nowhere I had to say goodbye to join another call.  Frustration!

Agata's Story
We are shortly to leave Switzerland for a while.  As law abiding citizens we must de-register and declare non residency by law if we leave for > 6 months.   (Of course we know that numerous people do not do this, but we keep to the law).

At this point Swiss Banks would like to stiff you for large monthly sums.  See this article

So after 45 minutes of almost pointless and fruitless discussion with a UK bank, having already researched the very few that allow accounts in foreign currency (obviously for zero interest by the way)  Agata ended her call.

The call taker seemed to know almost nothing about the Bank Account but thought that it was backed by a secure deposits scheme.  10 minutes later his promised email arrived.  The Bank account was in a different country to that which he had told us.  Oh mi!

Our Pledge
Marcus has a pledge when dealing with incompetent (typically Outsourced) Service Centres

- Speak Slowly
- Don't pre-judge
- Go through the often tedious and inappropriate PD they initiate
- Don't try to be smart or confuse the Service Rep
- Try and get their name
- Politely ask for them to put you through to a more knowledgeable person if necessary
- Don't shout, try not to show frustration

If it becomes obvious within the first 10 minutes of the call you are dealing with a total idiot who knows nothing about their product or service, and if escalation fails, politely end the call and think of a different escalation e.g. email, web-form

Low Expectations

On days like theis I make a plea to all Service Centre operators

- Be knowledgeable about the product that you are supporting
- Don't lie or pretend to know what you do not know
- If you are out of your depth refer the situation to somebody else
- Don't put down the phone on us
- If you promise to get back to us, then yes, do actually get back to us
- If you are not enthusiastic and helpful doing this job then please get another one that does interest you.  We; the end user can tell you know.  Bad service from you taints your company for far longer than the day of your  meh response.

Saved by the Swim

By 15.00 this afternoon morale was at a low point.  Agata rescued the situation as we headed off for a Swim at the local pool.   It worked.   We walked back home ready for round #2.

Swiss fury about non Resident Accounts

Idiocracy: Introduction