Friday, 1 March 2013

Why does everything take so long?

Last week I told you how my router kept playing up and how I had to keep re-setting it in order to get Broadband.   On Saturday morning BT kindly rearranged me a new package and ordered me a new router, saying it would be here on Tuesday (26th).

Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and this morning went by and there was no sign of a new router.   This afternoon I rang - picking up the phone at 2pm, I was in a queue until 2.20pm then a nice lady listened to my story and said she would put me through to the management team.   I was in a queue until 2.35pm when a nice man listened to my story and after looking into things told me that the particular router which they were going to send me had been out of stock, so the order had not gone ahead.

Now a new order has been made,with a new order number, and the router is coming by courier and should arrive some time on Tuesday.   After almost an hour on the telephone I am feeling more frustrated than I was before I started - not helped by the fact that in the middle of this sentence BT rang to ask me to do a survey about the service I had received.

I don't think anyone is to blame - it is surely the size of all these organisations that is at fault.   Why do things have to be so large and unmanageable?   Gone are the days when organisations were small and personal.   We still have our local bank with bank clerks I have known since I came to live up here; they provide a really personal service but I wonder how long it will be allowed to continue as quite often our bank is empty whilst there is a queue at the cash machine outside.

There are a number of gas leaks down our lane - at least a dozen places where there is a very strong smell of gas when you walk past.  The gas board finally came and repaired one really strong smelling one - but the rest have remained unrepaired for the last couple of years.   How much gas is being wasted?   Who is paying for it?  We have reported it regularly but to no avail.

Potholes proliferate down our lane every time there is a frost or a bad spell of weather.   Gulleys at the side of the lane are blocked and have been for years.In the "good old days" this village, like all villages, had a 'road man'.   Ours in the village where I lived was called Joe Hardy, and every day you could see Joe around with his spade and wheelbarrow, cleaning the gutters, chopping out blocked conduits, generally making things shipshape. (us kids used to go down to his house after school on Mondays just so that we could see his huge combinations hanging on the washing line.   They had a massive slit in them and we never did work out whether the slit was at the front or the back!)

It is wrong to assume that everything has changed for the worse.   It is wrong to look back and say that things were better in the old days because of course they weren't.   But sometimes these large organisations seem to lose the personal touch and things get lost in the great skyscrapers of departments and the great avenues of telephone exchanges needed to deal with them.    

13 comments:

Heather said...

I think you are suffering from a dose of 'progress' Pat, and probably a dearth of commonsense. Of course many things have improved, but so many companies and organizations have grown to such an extent the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing. Add to that the ever constant demand for profit, profit, profit and you have fewer staff trying to cope with increased work loads.
We can't telephone our local bank as they don't take incoming calls!
Hope you are soon satisfied with your service provider.

MorningAJ said...

I hope your router arrives soon. It's annoying when technology doesn't work.

I daren't start on the topic of taking a long time. I'm in the process of changing my bank account. Don't ask!

Angie said...

Great post ...I am so with you ...my pet hate is explaining everything and then being transfered, only to have to explain again ....often this can happen three or four times ....but who pays for the call ....we do. The other thing that annoys me is that although those in the bank are pleasant and friendly each one only can answer certain questions ....so you have to see several faces before the problem has a chance of being solved ...gone are the days of asking to see the bank manager who used to know you well and answer all your questions. ...but then thats progress.

Rachel said...

We used to have a visit from the bank manager once a year. Mum would bake scones for his visit. We would discuss the farm overdraft, go outside and walk the crops and come back for another cup of tea, shake hands and another year's overdraft would begin. Now I don't know who our bank manager is or, if there is one, where he is. We are also not allowed to ring the local branch as the number is not released.I feel like we are a complete nuisance to the bank.

Actually when the BT router went down I found the lady in Mumbai most helpful and problem solved within a couple of days.

Good luck.

Rachel

Bovey Belle said...

Hmmm - I am NOT the one to mention BT to, as I am still trying to recover from being without a phone and broadband for over two months! Like you say, these organizations are far too large, the left hand doesn't even know that the right hand exists and they employ legions of people dealing with customer complaints and then tell their engineers that there are too many of them and redundancies are necessary! Crazy! Apparently with the pole work now, that is now tendered out and the sub-contractors then sub-contract ad infinitum so of course no-one can give a repair date.

I hope that you get your new router soon and the problems are solved.

Hildred said...

Oh Pat, I feel your frustration.

I have started to take advantage of the empty banks when the queue line at the bank machine is too daunting, and I find it so pleasant to have a little conversation with the tellers I have known - some since their childhood.

On the other hand I had my Credit Card at my favourite store in the city declined the other day as one of the 'new' ones had not yet reached me in the mail, and the old ones had been declared invalid!
Head Office, of course, was somewhere in the East (Canadian East, - thank goodness not India, where most computer techs seem to reside).

Hope this coming Tuesday will be your lucky day.

The Solitary Walker said...

What I really hate, Pat, are the menus you're forced to negotiate when you phone up any large organisation these days. I had to go through so many questions and hash key responses the other day (I think it was HM Revenue) I went quietly insane for ten minutes. Then I was cut off so had to start all over again...

The Solitary Walker said...

And, yes, as someone said above, you can never get through to your local bank, or your local anywhere — Currys, Boots, Smiths, Sainsbury, B&Q and so on. You're always directed to some centralised number.

mumasu said...

I am with the famous spanish bank. You can't take out less than £50 over the counter unless you are under 16. There are always queues at the cashpoints inside and outside the branch, whilst the cashiers are doing nothing.

Dave King said...

I have to say, your experiences echo mine remarkably. We have just had a power shower replaced. The new one leaks. The plumber has been back a couple of times - not at the times agreed - but it still leaks. I could go on...

Em Parkinson said...

This is all sounding VERY familiar. Someone who used to work for BT once told me that, as they've grown, communication, ironically, has broken down between departments, and no one knows what anyone else is doing. Very worrying!

The Weaver of Grass said...

Oh dear - all your comments make depressing reading - it seems we have all had more or less the same experience. I have now had an e mail to say that my router is coming on Monday although on the phone I was told Tuesday! Bring back the little red phone box with a Press Button A or Press Button B I say!!

Gerry Snape said...

I'm soo with you here...Kaitlin Moran has written such a good piece on this very problem today and I wonder if it's time for all us caring people...that is about our country...to march!!!! well I th9ink we're quite a caring bunch otherwise why would we even bother to write about it!!!