How Easy Is That?


Last winter, after the mountain of snow that fell on Bleak House, SWMBO decided to try wintering in sunny Florida. So last week we went down to drop her off at the appointed location and set up the telecom technology. It was a no-brainer compared to our historical experience in TGWN

    Day 1 - Where in we meet the service provider

    1. I drop into the local cable company office. It a bit of a ‘mom and pop’ operation, but has all service reps ready to serve customers—good sign,
    2. Take a number and wait with geriatric customers who carry armloads of cable boxes,
    3. Get to service representative, ask for local service and broadband,
    4. He mutters something about shortage of modems and advises it needs service visit,
    5. I suggest I can install myself and he says, “No takeaway modems available, but will charge lowest fee possible for truck roll”,
    6. He tells me that broadband will cost 19.99/month (5MB service) and telephone is $24.95 with tons of features,
    7. I agree and he says “$19.99 service visit charge, that’s it, no other fees and tech will be there tomorrow between 15:00 and 17:00″,
    8. I think, yeah, yeah that’s likely to happen and take a list of numbers to call…, and
    9. Total time spent at cable company office 15 minutes.

    Day 2 - wherein the tech arrives late, but competent

    1. Tech has not arrived or called at 16:30 and I am now thinking that this is just like OHANL
    2. Call Service Centre and surprise, no call queue, service rep gets on to dispatch and tells me that alternate tech will be dispatched in 10 minutes and will call me within 15 minutes,
    3. Tech calls as advised and arrives with required equipment,
    4. Says we must install software to get modem to work, I say no way and he calls dispatch to get them to reset to allow for IP to appear without client software,
    5. He says, “I dont know why they still ask to install software - its just trouble waiting to happen…”,
    6. We test all stuff and all is great, broadband speed is about 6.8MB down, 2MB up, and phone features all work.
    7. Result: Happiness in the land.

So why so difficult here OHANL?

I cannot explain why it’s so tough to get the same service set up here. In our last experience to get two lines set up and a broadband connection (absolutely no work inside the house was required) it took;

    Day 1- 25 - wherein the service provider drags on the process

    1. More than 17 calls to the service provider,
    2. Nearly of 2 hours of hold time,
    3. Three technician visits,
    4. One of our lines out of service for a week,
    5. Then assigned the wrong number,
    6. A truck roll to change a number(???),
    7. And after nearly 25 days we were in operation.
    8. Result: Misery and latent anger toward service provider to this day.

Final grumpiness

It seems to me that if you want to build a solid base of loyal customers you might think of giving them what they want quickly and correctly. Any process or support system that is not doing that should be fixed or eliminated. As a consumer it seems that I have to choose the best of a bad lot in service providers. Was that really what competition was all about?

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