Lately (see Workman Woes post) I've really been feeling at the raw end of the deal end of the scale where good service is concerned.
I often joke with my team how our role makes us worse and we perhaps have an unreasonable level of support we expect in our personal lives when we become 'the client'.
This was clear when I had an almighty bang back to earth and reality when dealing with solicitors and estate agents.
What's bugging me is this is starting to become the norm.
We ordered some fitted wardrobes not long after we moved in (it's clear now we WON'T be using them again) and every step (since signing that is) has felt like a saga.
The different elements of the business are so segregated and clearly don't speak to each other.
And now even post installation I'm chasing them for answers and actions.
One example today, a replacement panel got delivered to the house whilst I was at work and my fiancé was asleep in bed. Nobody had booked that in with us. In fact we hadn't even confirmed we definitely wanted said replacement.
I call today to speak to our 'dedicated' installation manager and get told he's not in until 1130 today. This is the same guy who text me to say he's on hand for anything and the next day left work early and didn't respond to anyone (myself and his staff included).
I leave a message and by around 2 I've had enough - having been told he'd call me as soon as he was in. No apology. He didn't get in until 1245 actually and he's about to go into a meeting?!
Without going into the details I then push him to call me once out said meeting ASAP. It's now nearly 630 and I'm on my way home. No call.
Still he's in until 8pm tonight so I'm sure he'll call me (*said in extremely sarcastic tone).
I know what I'll do then I'll check on my sofa, dining table and chairs and sideboard instead with another company. It was ordered 5 weeks ago this Saturday. At the time they said delivery in 5 weeks if not before. No call as yet.
After calling the local store a few times to no answer I used their live chat service online. They can't access order details...
So I ring the group customer service number. They can't access order details...
The lady did offer to email the store and ask them to call me back.
To be fair some time later they did call back. Once at 340pm where they said most of my items are at the warehouse but they need to confirm on the dining set as it comes in a container and needs to be found/properly checked and entered in the system. He'll call me back when the warehouse lady phones him back. He's in until 8pm so he'll call back today.
An hour and 20 minutes later he calls back to say he'll call me tomorrow and pretty much the exact same spiel he gave before. Helpful.
I won't go into all the other experiences that have taken place the last six weeks, but needless to say not many of them have been good. Bar the credit card company who let me know someone had committed fraud against me (thank goodness their approach was good!)
Again, as I asked re workmen, how do they get away with it and why are they happy to act this way?
I'm still waiting for a goodwill gesture sum of money from one online appliance company that messed up my initial cashback due to delays. The goodwill money itself to say sorry for delays has now been delayed too.
For the solicitors and estate agents post dealing with me they sent me surveys on my views of the service. I was honest at how poor they were. I've heard nothing.
I'm hoping I'm going through a bad patch and this is not the way B2C customer service in the UK is now going to be.
In the famous words myself, my team (and I'm sure most people in B2B client service) say everytime:
"If I treated my clients like that I wouldn't have a job".
Rant over, now to await my mythical calls back!