Friday, February 25, 2005

The Myth Of Privatisation Revisited 

Back in December last year, following the break in to my car, I posted a rant against private courier companies, naming Initial City Link as one in particular. I've only recently discovered that on the 26th January this year, some 'Anonymous' person has posted a comment regarding my rant, which I reproduce below:

You clearly have no idea how courier companies work? Name me a courier co that delivers only in the evening. If you order a parcel then you should think of how the package will be delivered to yourself and make suitable arrangements.
Anonymous | 12.18.04 - 6:48 pm | #

I replied to the comment in Haloscan, but think that maybe I should also respond in the blog body.

Dear Mr/Mrs/Miss/Ms Anonymous,

It is quiet clear from your comment that you have no conception of how service industries should treat it's customers. By the way, in case you didn't understand, a customer happens to be every person or organisation you deal with, not just the one who pays you. I, by the way, by way of my insurance claim, am the one who ultimately paid for the delivery. I was the customer and the courier company could not provide a satisfactory service.

Anonymous actually failed to understand what my rant was about; I had no option but to accept a product delivered by a private courier company, because my insurance company dictated which supplier/installer I had to use. The supplier did not indicate that a private courier would be used to deliver the product, nor did they indicate that I would have no alternative but to accept delivery within office hours.

When the courier company concerned, failed to deliver the parcel because no one was at home, they left the usual note to say it would be re-delivered the next day. I phoned to say that nobody would be at home and could alternative arrangement be made out of office hours. The company concerned could not comply as they did not work out of office hours. They couldn't even offer me the option of collecting it from a depot on a Saturday morning.

So let's re-iterate the problem; the courier only works business hours so realistically can only deliver to businesses who operate during business hours, but they accept parcels destined for private homes, where some people, believe it or not, actually have to go out to work in business hours.

Sometimes these people due to work pressure cannot get time off to sit around all day waiting for a delivery, just in case it actually comes. Now because the private courier cannot offer alternative arrangements for delivery/collection of a package, the whole process breaks down. I actually tried to point this out to the company and, suggested that some sort of arrangement should be looked into to get around the problem. It was then that I was told that the company concerned didn't operate like that and it was my problem.

Now that is, as far as I'm concerned, appalling customer service. That is why I condemned Initial City Link's service as garbage. They cannot cater for people who cannot be at home when they deem to call. As usual like all private delivery companies they couldn't even give me an approximate time that it would be delivered.

I happened to name Initial City Link because they are the company I had to deal with, but my rant is against all private courier companies, who take on work delivering packages to private households and can offer no alternative, to delivery/collection, other than within Business Hours. No I can't name another private courier company who deliver in the evening, but that isn't the point is it? The point is; perhaps one private company should take up the challenge and score points against it's competitors, a point which was lost on the company I dealt with.

For the record I do not operate in the courier industry but I have operated, for 25 years plus, in roles which relied upon good customer service, even in the face of obnoxious open bigotry and stupidity, to keep me and my employers in business.

Take note: just because things are done a certain way now, doesn't make them right.

Coffdrop (AKA: An Awkward Customer)

PS: How do I distinguish your anonymous comments from any others, that may from time to time be posted? Even leaving a nickname would have shown some sort of courtesy, but then it seems that customer service isn't your strong point.

Just The Job To Start The Day 

Vegetarians look away now. I've just created my favourite all day breakfast, you can see a picture of it below:

 Posted by Hello

Create your own breakfast here: All Day Brekkie.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Progress Report - Mrs C 

We've just got back from the hospital after Mrs C's latest review. The surgeons continue to be pleased with her recovery. The endoscopy, that they performed, revealed that there is no sign of any regrowth of the cancer. Granted we still have another 9 years of reviews to come, but it's another hurdle over. She has been dreading this one for the last 2 weeks and cried tears of relief when the consultant gave her this all clear.

Monday, February 21, 2005

You've Done It All.............. 

That's it then, there's no going back, the Steve Harley tickets are now booked. Now all I have to do is collect them from the box office. We're 3 rows from the front and slap bang in the middle of the auditorium.

Friday, February 18, 2005

How True? 

Type "fuckwit" into Google and hit the "I Feel Lucky" button. What do you think?

Purloined from: Dearie Me.

If Music Be The Food Of Love...... 

We could be booking another concert in the near future, I mentioned the Steve Harley concert to Mrs C and she didn't discount it. In fact her exact words were "If you want to, it's up to you" She then went onto ask "What did he do apart from 'Make Me Smile', 'Judy Teen' and 'Mr Soft'?".

As all of my Cockney Rebel stuff is on vinyl and I currently have nothing to play it on, I was a bit stuck. That is until I landed on the Steve Harley website and copied the 12 free tracks that are available there for download. That's one track from each of the 12 albums he has released over the years. Of the 12 tracks downloaded there were only 2 I didn't like; 'Hot Youth' and 'Finally A Card Game'. I was pleased to see that one of my favourite tracks, from Cockney Rebel's 1st album Human Menagerie, was available on the site; 'Muriel The Actor', it's pure class.

Mrs C will be treated to a playing of the tracks this weekend and hopefully won't entirely dislike them. Whether she does or doesn't, I'm booking a ticket for myself anyway.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Journey From Hell Update 

You know those times when you are waiting ages for a bus and then two come along together? Well it's like that with this blog sometimes;

I received a letter from Virgin trains today apologising for the dreadful delays to their trains, way back in January, on the 18th to be precise.

In the letter they stated that Due to the bad weather things started to go horribly wrong from 3pm onwards and just got worse...... The person replying also stated that: he could have written pages about what went wrong, but the bottom line is I had a completely unpleasant journey and, would I accept their sincere apologies and a £19 travel voucher, to be used on Virgin Trains any time over the next 12 months

Wonderful, I never use the train, the voucher belongs to the company because I was on expenses, so really all I have is their apologies. What I don't understand is:

If the problems started at 3pm, why at 5:58pm were there no warnings at Wigan station that the trains were likely to be delayed? Someone must have known what was going on 3 hours down the line. Added to that, Virgin can't do their sums; the travel voucher they sent me was for half the cost of my return ticket. Ermmmm £36.30p divided by 2 is £18.15 not £19. I suppose I should feel pleased that I'm up on the deal. Somehow I think Not!

Fleeting Visits! 

I didn't think it could get any worse, but work seems to have taken over my life of late. I even did a 10 hour stint on Sunday. If anyone ever tells me developing software for the internet in J2E is the Bee's Knees, then I'll kick him in the crotch, Kick him in the crotch again, and then again for good measure.

Anyway what have I been up to apart from work, not a lot really though Mrs C and I have booked a couple more concerts to attend over the coming year; First off were going to watch Michael MacDonald formerly of The Doobie Brothers at the Liverpool Philharmonic on 7th March, then later in the year, November to be more precise we've booked to see some real golden oldies; The Temptations and The Four Tops at the Manchester MEN Arena. To be honest I'm tagging along as they're Mrs C's choice really, but once I'm there I'll probably enjoy the experience.

Mrs C has now promised that I can chose who we next go to see. I'm not sure how she'll react when I suggest Steve Harley at the Bridgewater Hall in September.

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