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Edition 98 – The Poor Attitude of Big Business

Let me share with you what has been happening with my own business this past four weeks and why I truly believe big business really doesn’t give a damn about their customers.

When we set up our business to work from home, we set up a business internet service with a separate provider to our home internet service. It was to ensure we had the right amount of internet oomph coming in when we needed it. It was also a good insurance policy in the event of something going pear shaped down the track with the provider.

Around six weeks ago, this business internet service started to play up. We did some checks with the assistance of the provider (TPG) , our IT advisors and NBN Co who, for my international readers, are the Government body charged with dragging Australia’s internet service into the future – allegedly! NBN stands for the National Broadband Network. The provider and NBN Co advised to migrate the internet from ADSL to the NBN.

Long story short, whilst NBN Co advised that the NBN was available in our area, it appears that someone didn’t install the infrastructure correctly. The green boxes are in the street. However, someone didn’t connect them up to the network. Go figure!

In order to create a work around, our fabulous IT advisors switched everything over from the business service at TPG to the home service with Telstra. For four weeks, life was good, until Monday the 27th November at 1.20pm. At that point, the home phone and home internet went out. There goes the insurance policy.

Up until Friday 1st December 2017, we spent in excess of 7 hours on the phone, talking to different people, in different call centres. They each told us different stories as to why our internet service was not available. Somewhere in that bunch of conversations, one of the call centre types admitted that Telstra had cancelled our ADSL internet service in preparation for installation of the NBN. Now, this was a cancellation done not only without our authorisation, but also against our express wishes to remain on the ADSL service. Telstra acknowledged this when they read through the case notes. Our plan was to not migrate the home service to the NBN until it had proven itself in our local area.

As of the time of writing this newsletter, we are still without an internet service and have had one phone call returned by Telstra of the five that we were promised. The one returned call basically involved 15 minutes on hold, to be told nothing.

Now, here is why big business truly sucks:

  1. When a customer has a problem, no one takes ownership of it.
  2. A call centre to handle your customer complaints is a giant maze of duck shoving and upline complaint referral – but not solutions.
  3. There appears to be inadequate training as to how to handle customer issues – otherwise, why would so many different reasons to the one problem be provided?
  4. The people on the end of the line never, ever have to look you in the eye when they run into you and admit they messed up. They hide behind the anonymity of a 1800 number.
  5. If you advertise a service that isn’t operational, I call that misleading and deceptive conduct under the law.
  6. Customers with faulty services are merely collateral damage in the big corporate’s journey into where ever it is they are heading.

This week’s example of why big business sucks is all about telcos. I have plenty of other stories of other industries where big corporates engage in shocking behaviour in order to get their own way, or explain away a problem. Basically, they don’t care and it is time for people to start calling them out on it.

This Week’s Tip

“Stay tuned – next week I am going to parallel for you the complete opposite –  a family business that went above and beyond in order to get us back on the air.”