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Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?
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Old 21-10-2017, 22:02   #31
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardCoulter View Post
Just watched my recording of yesterday's Rip Off Britain.

A VM customer found that VM had been taking an extra Direct Debit from his account for £8 per month for the last three years, leading to a total overpayment of £272.

He was messed about for some time before VM offered him a 50% refund

When he called to accept the offer (I wouldn't have accepted it, but perhaps he just wanted to get the issue resolved), incredibly, he was told "that offer has now expired"

It's not known if he asked for the matter to be escelated, but he was eventually refunded the full amount of £272 after the BBC consumer programme intervened.

I've also been chatting on the phone today to a friend who works in a mobile phone call centre. Amongst the things we discussed was why people have to do the annoying press 2, press 3, press 5 etc thing.

I said that I assumed that it was to direct each particular type of query to someone who specialised in that area. He said that he didn't know why they did this as all types of calls ended up being routed to the same team of people anyway!

Does anyone else know the answer? All I can think of is that it's to give the impression that the customer is progressing through the system in order to get their call dealt with, when in reality it's just a stalling tactic to give CS staff more time to clear any existing calls that they are currently working on.
Some points:

Operative 1 in your story will have had the authority given the complaint made to offer 50% back.

Operative 2 will not have.

Some higher level of complaints team dealing with the BBC will have had the authority to have paid the whole sum back given the PR involved of the BBC running the story. Indeed, the outcome (should the story air), will make Virgin look slightly incompetent but not unreasonable, which for £136/272 (however you look it) is a bargain compared to the story airing with an unhappy customer £272 out of pocket.

The organisation I worked for certainly dealt with complaints drastically differently depending on whether it was from an individual, a media company on behalf of the same hypothetical individual, or an elected official on behalf of that same individual. Rightly or wrongly, most companies want things dealt with first time at minimum cost.

Similar to how I phoned Sky to cancel and got offered 20% off, then called by a further team offering me 40% during my 30 days, and got further called after my 30 days with an even better offer but sadly I'm under contract with Virgin now. Each level had different amounts of discretion they were entitled to offer depending on how serious they thought I was.
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Old 22-10-2017, 02:27   #32
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

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Originally Posted by RichardCoulter View Post
I'm not sure which outburst you are referring to, but it appears that it is you that is prone to these.

To address your points, I most certainly am not perfect (it would be impossible to be so after suffering a brain injury). My mantra has always been that if someone is not up to the job, then they must go and this applies to me as much as anybody else. Thus, I now only work part time.

I too have dealt with cable CS for about 20 years and, like yourself, found the vast majority of staff to be polite, helpful, respectful and friendly. However, as previously explained, a professional would not resort to being awkward, rude or treating anybody who met with their displeasure less favourably. Circumstances where this behaviour would ever be appropriate simply do not exist and, in fact, may be illegal in some cases.

VM, however, have a duty to protect their staff from abuse, threats etc and will have policies in place to deal with this. Staff would be expected to follow said practices and not resort to the behaviour referred to above.

As you can see, even though you (and others) have implied that somehow my "attitude" was at fault, you have no basis for suggesting this. Nevertheless, even if this were to be correct, staff should behave like a professional adult at all times. I can also confirm that, upon listening to the recordings, management have at no time made any suggestion that I had behaved improperly or that my "attitude" was at fault in any way.

I don't think that you genuinely believe that I think that John Malone is deliberately targeting myself, this is just plain silly.

What I do believe is that since LG bought VM, staff are being pressurised into not escalating customer problems, even where appropriate. It is interesting to note that none have posted in here to confirm or deny my suspicions, although dodgem 22 kindly gave some insight into the workings of a modern day call centre.

In the modern day workplace people are under a lot of pressure to meet targets set by their employers; this applies to the 999 service, right through to VM. The vast majority do so impeccably and I have at no time "slagged off", as you crudely put it, any VM employee.

Again, as previously stated, I could not count on one hand the amount of times that I have had to escelate any issues to senior management over a period spanning two decades.

You are within your rights not to request compensation for a total loss of service, but I believe that most people would do so after being asked for an ever increasing amount of money every month. It is also astute business practice to offer something to say sorry and maintain customer goodwill.

I have a feeling that someone is following this thread as i've now also been offered the Sky Movie suite of channels on a complimentary basis for a period of time!

This is good business practice and benefits everyone concerned; I am recompensed for the various issues that shouldn't have happened in the first place, VM continue to make a lot of money from me and our business and the employee in question gets some refresher training (AKA attitude adjustment!), so will find her job easier and more enjoyable.

I'm a little concerned at your use of the term "right thinking", considering one of my disabilities, but you do appear to enjoy stirring things up at times, not all the time though, as noted by myself and other members in various threads.

It must be assumed that blowing this up out of all proportion and making false accusations is simply another one of those occasions.

I do hope that we can now get back to discussing the salient point of this thread as opposed to the OP who happened to create it and that I have covered all the points that you raised and alleviated any misunderstandings.
I'm lost for words, Richard. Yes, let's keep to the subject, but also don't bring your disabilities into the debates on this forum with the apparent intention to stifle debate. We really don't want to know about them, although of course we sympathise.

You do have a kind of point in terms of compensation for services not received, but you seem to be making claims on an industrial scale. Just remember that you are taking money from the rest of us. That puts up prices.

Thanks for that.
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Old 22-10-2017, 04:25   #33
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jfman View Post
Some points:

Operative 1 in your story will have had the authority given the complaint made to offer 50% back.

Operative 2 will not have.

Some higher level of complaints team dealing with the BBC will have had the authority to have paid the whole sum back given the PR involved of the BBC running the story. Indeed, the outcome (should the story air), will make Virgin look slightly incompetent but not unreasonable, which for £136/272 (however you look it) is a bargain compared to the story airing with an unhappy customer £272 out of pocket.

The organisation I worked for certainly dealt with complaints drastically differently depending on whether it was from an individual, a media company on behalf of the same hypothetical individual, or an elected official on behalf of that same individual. Rightly or wrongly, most companies want things dealt with first time at minimum cost.

Similar to how I phoned Sky to cancel and got offered 20% off, then called by a further team offering me 40% during my 30 days, and got further called after my 30 days with an even better offer but sadly I'm under contract with Virgin now. Each level had different amounts of discretion they were entitled to offer depending on how serious they thought I was.
It's actually been aired (Friday just gone). If you want to watch it, it's one of the last articles:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09bcswy

---------- Post added at 02:25 ---------- Previous post was at 01:44 ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by OLD BOY View Post
I'm lost for words, Richard. Yes, let's keep to the subject, but also don't bring your disabilities into the debates on this forum with the apparent intention to stifle debate. We really don't want to know about them, although of course we sympathise.

You do have a kind of point in terms of compensation for services not received, but you seem to be making claims on an industrial scale. Just remember that you are taking money from the rest of us. That puts up prices.

Thanks for that.
I and others on this forum have disabilities of varying degrees and will not be made to feel embarrassed or ashamed of them by the likes of you. Whilst there have been problems in the past, you are now the only person who likes to bring the subject up and make innapropriate comments.

You asked if I thought I was perfect, to which I gave an honest answer that I did not and shared very personal life events as to the reasons why.

Your claim that severely disabled people refusing to hide away to suit yourself somehow "stifles debate" is as bizarre as it is offensive.

Re: Allegations of me making claims for compensation on an industrial scale.

On the vast majority of occasions it is VM who have offered to compensate me. It might be for the reason that dodgem22 outlined, I really don't know.

I myself cannot recall the occasions when I've been compensated, due to the affects of the brain damage on my memory, so you certainly won't be able to.

Whatever the amounts involved, it comes across that you are bitter and jealous about it. If you knew what I go through every day, you really wouldn't want to swap places, believe me.

I'm having headaches and trouble sleeping as i'm on new medication and have to be up as my disability support worker is coming. Reading this nastiness just before retiring to bed has really upset me so certainly won't help.

I suggest that you leave the rest of us in peace to debate the subject without your discord.
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Old 22-10-2017, 08:04   #34
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

Ah rip-off Britain. One of my favourite shows of how the gullible public don't know what they are doing.

Some key facts are absent from the story which I'd like to know. Notably what did the £8 relate to, when was said product taken out, under what terms and for what purpose? Did he notify to cancel? If so, when and why didn't he check his bill at that time?

I guess we will never know. However the current mindset is that companies are wrong and the public wh don't read terms and conditions are automatically mis-sold. The news article recently about people outside the minimum term of mobile contracts still paying full price a classic example. If someone hasn't set a reminder or doesn't log in to find out when they can upgrade or switch to SIM only that is their own fault.
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Old 22-10-2017, 10:12   #35
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardCoulter View Post
It's actually been aired (Friday just gone). If you want to watch it, it's one of the last articles:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09bcswy

---------- Post added at 02:25 ---------- Previous post was at 01:44 ----------



I and others on this forum have disabilities of varying degrees and will not be made to feel embarrassed or ashamed of them by the likes of you. Whilst there have been problems in the past, you are now the only person who likes to bring the subject up and make innapropriate comments.

You asked if I thought I was perfect, to which I gave an honest answer that I did not and shared very personal life events as to the reasons why.

Your claim that severely disabled people refusing to hide away to suit yourself somehow "stifles debate" is as bizarre as it is offensive.

Re: Allegations of me making claims for compensation on an industrial scale.

On the vast majority of occasions it is VM who have offered to compensate me. It might be for the reason that dodgem22 outlined, I really don't know.

I myself cannot recall the occasions when I've been compensated, due to the affects of the brain damage on my memory, so you certainly won't be able to.

Whatever the amounts involved, it comes across that you are bitter and jealous about it. If you knew what I go through every day, you really wouldn't want to swap places, believe me.

I'm having headaches and trouble sleeping as i'm on new medication and have to be up as my disability support worker is coming. Reading this nastiness just before retiring to bed has really upset me so certainly won't help.

I suggest that you leave the rest of us in peace to debate the subject without your discord.
Where is there any inappropriate or offensive comment?
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Old 22-10-2017, 11:14   #36
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

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Originally Posted by jfman View Post
Ah rip-off Britain. One of my favourite shows of how the gullible public don't know what they are doing.

Some key facts are absent from the story which I'd like to know. Notably what did the £8 relate to, when was said product taken out, under what terms and for what purpose? Did he notify to cancel? If so, when and why didn't he check his bill at that time?

I guess we will never know. However the current mindset is that companies are wrong and the public wh don't read terms and conditions are automatically mis-sold. The news article recently about people outside the minimum term of mobile contracts still paying full price a classic example. If someone hasn't set a reminder or doesn't log in to find out when they can upgrade or switch to SIM only that is their own fault.
When you sign up for a new phone with an element of paying for that phone over say 24 months it is not acceptable under any circumstances for the supplying company to continue to charge you for the purchase element of the phone after that 24 months.

The contract should be explicit on the payment terms, i.e. 24 months payments at £X pm then 25th payment onwards at £Y pm.

It is not down to the customer to police this, although it is prudent for the customer to check the correct payments have been taken, it is down to the supplying company to ensure it only takes money it is entitled to.
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Old 22-10-2017, 11:44   #37
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardCoulter View Post
It's actually been aired (Friday just gone). If you want to watch it, it's one of the last articles:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09bcswy

---------- Post added at 02:25 ---------- Previous post was at 01:44 ----------



I and others on this forum have disabilities of varying degrees and will not be made to feel embarrassed or ashamed of them by the likes of you. Whilst there have been problems in the past, you are now the only person who likes to bring the subject up and make innapropriate comments.

You asked if I thought I was perfect, to which I gave an honest answer that I did not and shared very personal life events as to the reasons why.

Your claim that severely disabled people refusing to hide away to suit yourself somehow "stifles debate" is as bizarre as it is offensive.

Re: Allegations of me making claims for compensation on an industrial scale.

On the vast majority of occasions it is VM who have offered to compensate me. It might be for the reason that dodgem22 outlined, I really don't know.

I myself cannot recall the occasions when I've been compensated, due to the affects of the brain damage on my memory, so you certainly won't be able to.

Whatever the amounts involved, it comes across that you are bitter and jealous about it. If you knew what I go through every day, you really wouldn't want to swap places, believe me.

I'm having headaches and trouble sleeping as i'm on new medication and have to be up as my disability support worker is coming. Reading this nastiness just before retiring to bed has really upset me so certainly won't help.

I suggest that you leave the rest of us in peace to debate the subject without your discord.
Richard, no-one is attempting to make you feel embarrassed about your disabilities. I am simply asking you to stop using them to try to get others to climb down when they say something you don't agree with.

As for the subject of this thread, I certainly do think that Customer Services should attempt to avoid an escalation upwards, and if they can achieve this satisfactorily, then fine. There will always be people who try it on and pursue complaints that can't be justified, and I expect it is those folks who complain when their unreasonable demands are refused.
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Old 22-10-2017, 12:26   #38
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

Compared to the previous incarnation of Cable and Wireless, Virgin Media are paragons of virtue.No CS representative has ever been rude to me possibly because I'm unfailingly polite to begin with.
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Old 22-10-2017, 12:56   #39
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

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Originally Posted by Maggy J View Post
Compared to the previous incarnation of Cable and Wireless, Virgin Media are paragons of virtue.No CS representative has ever been rude to me possibly because I'm unfailingly polite to begin with.
I agree, Maggy, politeness goes a long way.
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Old 22-10-2017, 13:25   #40
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

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I agree, Maggy, politeness goes a long way.
Its a pity that good manners and politeness is a anathema to some nowadays as it cost nowt to be good mannered and polite to others.
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Old 22-10-2017, 14:19   #41
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

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Originally Posted by Maggy J View Post
Compared to the previous incarnation of Cable and Wireless, Virgin Media are paragons of virtue.No CS representative has ever been rude to me possibly because I'm unfailingly polite to begin with.
There would be no reason for you not to be, but if you read back further in the thread, you'll see CS should always remain polite and never try to treat customers less favourably if the way that they express themselves meets with the displeasure of any CS agent. This could also have legal ramifications.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OLD BOY View Post
Richard, no-one is attempting to make you feel embarrassed about your disabilities. I am simply asking you to stop using them to try to get others to climb down when they say something you don't agree with.

As for the subject of this thread, I certainly do think that Customer Services should attempt to avoid an escalation upwards, and if they can achieve this satisfactorily, then fine. There will always be people who try it on and pursue complaints that can't be justified, and I expect it is those folks who complain when their unreasonable demands are refused.
Again, another offensive and untrue allegation, whilst trying to run rings around a person with a mental impairment who had very little sleep last night which you contributed to.

I have shown your comments to my disability support worker who has suggested that I ask you to stop mentioning my disabilities or, if you feel unable to do so, that you refrain from interacting with me in entirety. This applies even if I choose to mention an integral part of myself or the difficulties that arise as a result during the course of any discussion.

Re: VM bills. It's all about negotiation/playing the game/bartering whatever you want to call it. It's a fact of everyday life. If you don't wish to partake, don't complain if others get a better deal than you do.
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Old 22-10-2017, 14:46   #42
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

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Originally Posted by RichardCoulter View Post
There would be no reason for you not to be, but if you read back further in the thread, you'll see CS should always remain polite and never try to treat customers less favourably if the way that they express themselves meets with the displeasure of any CS agent. This could also have legal ramifications.



Again, another offensive and untrue allegation, whilst trying to run rings around a person with a mental impairment who had very little sleep last night which you contributed to.

I have shown your comments to my disability support worker who has suggested that I ask you to stop mentioning my disabilities or, if you feel unable to do so, that you refrain from interacting with me in entirety. This applies even if I choose to mention an integral part of myself or the difficulties that arise as a result during the course of any discussion.

Re: VM bills. It's all about negotiation/playing the game/bartering whatever you want to call it. It's a fact of everyday life. If you don't wish to partake, don't complain if others get a better deal than you do.

Has it ever occurred to you that we all are aware that you have a disability, so you really don't need to mention it time after time after time?
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Old 22-10-2017, 15:34   #43
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardCoulter View Post
There would be no reason for you not to be, but if you read back further in the thread, you'll see CS should always remain polite and never try to treat customers less favourably if the way that they express themselves meets with the displeasure of any CS agent. This could also have legal ramifications.



Again, another offensive and untrue allegation, whilst trying to run rings around a person with a mental impairment who had very little sleep last night which you contributed to.

I have shown your comments to my disability support worker who has suggested that I ask you to stop mentioning my disabilities or, if you feel unable to do so, that you refrain from interacting with me in entirety. This applies even if I choose to mention an integral part of myself or the difficulties that arise as a result during the course of any discussion.

Re: VM bills. It's all about negotiation/playing the game/bartering whatever you want to call it. It's a fact of everyday life. If you don't wish to partake, don't complain if others get a better deal than you do.
You don't own the forum so there for if you mention your disability expect people to to talk about it. I'm not sure were you get off to tell people to stop talking about your disabilities while you can keep talking about them. What a strange post this is.
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Old 22-10-2017, 16:07   #44
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardCoulter View Post
Again, another offensive and untrue allegation, whilst trying to run rings around a person with a mental impairment who had very little sleep last night which you contributed to.

I have shown your comments to my disability support worker who has suggested that I ask you to stop mentioning my disabilities or, if you feel unable to do so, that you refrain from interacting with me in entirety. This applies even if I choose to mention an integral part of myself or the difficulties that arise as a result during the course of any discussion.
RiDICULOUS! You are posting on a public forum and partaking in discussion. Obviously you will get replies to your input. If you don't like the replies you get then maybe it is you who should reconsider interacting with members.

There are many on this forum who have various disabilities of many different degrees, none of them are treated any differently to any other forum member.

Perhaps if you stopped mentioning your disability this issue would go away.

Your disability has no bearing on this thread anyway.
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Old 22-10-2017, 16:09   #45
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Re: Are VM frontline staff now discouraged from escalating customer issues?

To be honest I put the blame on the customer for that. If you have a dd and it took you 2 years to notice it then a 50% refund is pretty fair. Some companies would only refhnd 3 or 6 months if it was not the fault of the provider.

I work in CEO complaint and customer relations so am the highest level someone can deal with before it goes to deadlock and the ombudsmen. It's your account and bank account so you should be monitoring it.
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