23 May 2008

BT? Bloody trying...

So, despite having a hefty workload this morning, I began the process of getting a phone number and broadband for Wordsmith Towers Mark II. I rang the orderline, got halfway through handing over my details (through gritted teeth as this was BT's call centre, which is in India and the staff tend to have impenetrable accents so everything takes ages as you have to get them to repeat things several times before you understand what is being said...) then got cut off. I rang back, and got cut off again within about 30 seconds.

I rang a third time and went through the process of explaining what I wanted (a line with a number plus t'internet - not rocket science) and was - oh joy of joys - connected to someone with a British accent. I got as far as having most of my order for the phone line taken when I was told there was "no service" for my new address. I asked for a translation and was told it meant there was "no service". I played verbal ping-pong for about 3 more rounds and was no nearer to understanding what "no service" means when my call-centre counterpart decided to slam the phone down on me.

By now, I'd been on the phone almost an hour and was no nearer my goal. I decided to bypass the call centre and order online. This took me to a page that told me to call but - yay! - it was a different number and in fact the sales office, staffed by Brits in the UK. The angel at the other end wrapped the whole thing up for me in less than 30 minutes, including giving me my new phone number, ordering my broadband, arranging for the engineer to flip some switches on the nearest telegraph pole (for that is the secret of resolving "no service" apparently) and arranging to have my router and phone sent to Wordsmith Towers Mark I so I don't miss the delivery.

You see, it didn't have to be so hard, did it? Why couldn't the call centre in India have just transferred me to start with?

Step 1 of the move has been accomplished. Time to celebrate with a well-earned glass of something 70-proof...

2 comments:

BenefitScroungingScum said...

Last time I asked to be transferred to a UK based call centre I heard something about racism then got the phone slammed down on me, aargh, hate 'em!
Hope it's all sorted asap, BG x

wordsmith_for_hire said...

It's really tricky even writing about such experiences after the event for fear of sounding racist. It's not racism, though, it's about a company providing a quality customer service. And that's bound to fall flat on its arse if customers can't understand what's being said to them. I'm slightly deaf in my phone ear, which doesn't help, but even so, I'd still struggle to comprehend. Other companies outsourced abroad and have now restored their customer service to the UK because of such issues. I wish BT would do the same.