Internet Service Provider Issues: A Case Study
When something goes wrong with an internet service provider, it can be a tricky business to rectify however determined you are, as this case study demonstrates.
Setting Up Broadband InternetThe only downside of Sheila’s new flat was that there was no broadband internet connection. As a translator working from home, it was imperative that this was installed set up as soon as possible.
She promptly set up a contract with a local internet service provider. After duly filling in the online form, she was requested to send payment details and a signed confirmation by fax. Once this had been received Sheila was told she could expect to receive her internet within five working days. She waited with great anticipation.
However, instead of receiving the equipment to set up the broadband internet, she received an email informing her that a connection was unavailable at her place of residence.
No Account To CancelWhy hadn’t she been told this to begin with? Infuriated, not least by the impersonal template email she received after all the time and effort wasted, she wasted no further time in responding to confirm cancellation of the contract.
Once this was confirmed, she could then look for a new provider. However, the response to this was mystifying – she was told she had no account to cancel. Refusing to accept this perplexing response, she phoned up the company only to be met with the same answer – there was no record of her holding an account.
Erroneous PaymentsIt was tempting to accept the scenario that none of this debacle had actually happened but she was unconvinced. Her suspicions were vindicated when, upon checking her bank account a couple of weeks later, she discovered that the internet service provider had taken payment out of her bank for the supposedly non-existent account.
In response, she immediately phoned up the company to demand an explanation. Frustratingly, she was unable to speak to the company representative from the previous call and so had to relate the whole situation to a new call centre operator.
The response she was given was that they couldn’t do anything without proof of the erroneous account debit. So Sheila sent a fax confirming the transfer, but unfortunately then failed to receive a response in return, and was forced once again to chase up the complaint.
Address ErrorThis time, after relating the case to another new call centre representative, she was told by that the transfer was correct because their records showed that not only had the internet equipment been sent out to Sheila several weeks prior, but it had been received and the broadband duly connected up. Incensed, Sheila insisted that she had never received any equipment and was therefore far from connected.
However, when she asked to confirm the address to her horror she discovered that it was a completely different location. It would seem the company had got her payment account details confused with a completely different address, the occupants of which would now be receiving broadband internet at her expense.
The hard work in confirming this administrative error was left to Sheila, who was forced to send a further fax detailing how her home address was different to that receiving an internet connection. Her determined efforts finally paid off when the internet company conceded their error and finally confirmed the cancellation of her account, before refunding the money taken from her bank account in error.
Through her persistent efforts, Sheila had solved the problem. But this case highlights how, even if you’re as dogged as she was, it can still be very difficult to resolve certain problems. As the company was found to be entirely in the wrong, Sheila had every right to seek compensation for her time, effort and inconvenience, but, exhausted from her battle for resolution, she decided to let the matter rest.
Dealing With Call CentresOne of the biggest frustrations of Sheila’s campaign was that she had to speak to a different call centre representative every time she phoned the helpline. This is a problem that many of us face. It is often too easy for the employee ignore your query as soon as they put the phone down, in the knowledge that they won’t get to speak to you again.
It would have improved her efforts if she had taken the name of the first person she had spoken to, and made a note of the time and date of the call. This information could prove to be vital evidence when following up a complaint. Even better, it is good practice to get the employee to confirm a resolution action – whether it’s cancelling an account or just promising a call back – and then put this into writing in a follow-up letter or email.