1 – On January 11, I wrote “I didn’t ask for it” which talked about the fact a company called U-file had sent me the CD containing the 2012 Canadian tax return. As I had used U-file the past couple of years they apparently assumed I’d want to use it again for this year’s return. My marital status had changed on the 2011 return, and when I clicked on the new status, I was greeted with a screen that asked all kinds of intrusive questions that, as I later learned, Canada Revenue Agency didn’t need the answers to. That CD has since found its way into my trash can and I purchased a different programme which worked quite well and was nowhere near as nosy.
2 – February 12 brought a rant called “Customer service, what’s that?” about the response I received from Virgin Mobile when I mentioned I was being actively wooed by another cell phone company. After posting that blog, I decided to contact customer service at Virgin by email. Being somewhat lazy on occasion, rather than write a whole new piece, I sent them the blog – minus some of the snark of course. About three days later I received a telephone call from a nice gentleman at Virgin who first apologized for the apparent lack of interest shown by the people who had spoken with me. I explained that I had much customer service experience and suggested that the negative replies I had received did not reflect well on Virgin, then offered a couple of possible responses. He told me they were valid ideas and he’d bring them up with the supervisor. He then explained that Rogers Communications, the firm who had contacted me, (more on Rogers in #3 below) had an advantage over Virgin since Rogers could offer package deals on cell service, internet, cable and landlines, whereas Virgin only offered the cell service. The result was that he smoothed my ruffled fur (I’m Cat – I have fur, not feathers ☺) and I renewed my phone contract two days later. No, I didn’t go for the BlackBerry Z10. It might be good, but how many times over the past year or so have we heard of the Eastern Seaboard losing email and messaging capabilities because BlackBerry’s server went down. Instead I went for the Apple 4s. One advantage to that was that since Apple brought out the 5, the phone I chose was no cost.
3 – The new grumble. Since April 2011, Rogers Communications have supplied my internet, cable and landline. I was able to get some “incentives” on all three services when I signed up – two of them for a one year period and 24 months on the cable. I’m on a pension, so these discounts play a great part in being able to afford the services I enjoy. Last Saturday I called Rogers’s customer service to see if it would be possible to extend these incentives, or failing that, if there was something else I could take advantage of to keep my bills at a reasonable level. I was told flat out that I’d have to wait at least 60 days then see if they had anything. The girl did point out that I would still be getting an 8% discount on my cable bundle. Big deal. I’m looking at my bill increasing by about $30 a month and she’s telling me I still get a $2.76 discount on cable.
Tuesday I called Rogers again, but this time I spoke with a gentleman in sales. I should have called sales the first time. He couldn’t extend the current incentives, but between us (him offering and me accepting) we came up with new plans that increase my cost by $4 a month, but give me more features on the telephone service. So I would have to score the interaction between Rogers and me as “Sales 1; Customer Service 0″.
Why does it seem that companies put people in customer service for whom the entire idea of customer service is a foreign concept? Is it possible these people are chosen because they show an aptitude for being unhelpful? In the case of Rogers especially, while they may be the largest company offering these services in Eastern Canada (east of the Manitoba/Ontario border), they are not the only one. I am constantly pulling adverts from my mailbox for Bell, who offer the same services as does Rogers and at competitive prices. You might think then than Rogers would be interested in retaining me as a customer rather than have customer service trying to drive me away.
Oh well, I’m guaranteed reasonable prices for all my services for at least the next year, so I’ll stop complaining. And I’ve got a new cell phone and still have the same plan, so I’m happy.
Enjoy your day and remember to hug an artist – we need love too.