Monday, August 02, 2010

Our phone

Our phone. In the middle of our house. Our house, in the middle of our street... come on - sing along. Our house....

Only of course it isn't going to be our house for much longer. And you know what that means... yup, a long tale follows... ready?
I promise my next post will be about art but bear with me while I rant amuse you

So, I get home and Dennis informs me I have to ring Talk Talk and get them to transfer our phone number the 1.6 miles down the road to the new house.
I have to do it because it has taken him 5 and a half hours and a drive to a different town to get much of the money we need to buy the house transferred into the solictors account, an ordeal the Alliance and Leicester subjected him to, which actually reduced him to tears, and he cannot face another call centre.

So I ring Talk Talk.  In India. They cannot simply transfer our name to the Talk Talk account the sellers have, the line must be disconnected and we get a new number and a new contract. We cannot keep our own number. Inconvenient but, as we keep getting calls for Asda supermarket anyway, maybe not fatal. What did annoy me was that it would take 28 days from the move to get broadband back.
Why? It is there already. Why can't they do it quicker?
"Ah. Miss Helen. We are getting this question regularly and it is because our engineers say that to do it ever so quickly will cause inconveniences to you that they are not prepared to have you suffer."
I am not going there.
I hang up to consider my options with other providers.

I consider the options and decide actually Talk Talk are well priced.
I ring back and get a South African call centre. Richard not only has a lovely accent but tells me all the sellers and we have to do is fill in a transfer of ownership form and guides me to it on the website. Fabulous. I ring the sellers and persuade the elderly and over cautious seller that it is safe to do that. I email the form to them.
They ring back. They rang Talk Talk to try to do this and were told, no. The line has to be disconnected and a new number given but it will not take 28 days. She is shocked that we were told that, the sellers say. It will take 2 or 3  days if we ring now.

Now. I don't know about you but I get very annoyed when I get given three versions of events.

I ring back and get South Africa again. I ask for a manager. I am required to go through the whole shebang again. I am given both option a and b above by the same person. I point out that both cannot be right. They are entirely different and I need to know which applies to me. I ask for a manager. He tells me I don't need a manager. I need to listen becuase I am not listening to what I am being told.

I don't quite shout.  But the response begains with, "I BEG your pardon?"  I stress in very certain terms that I am a lawyer, that I know exactly what I have been told and that I am not only listening very, very carefully, I am making a note of the evidence. Um, conversation. I. Want. A. Manager. Now. Please. If that is at all possible. No offence to you.

I am pretty sure I hear him drop the phone at the word lawyer and that he didn't hear the rest. I get a manager. Who listens and explains. The old term and conditions require the line to be disconnected. But those have been changed for people moving to a Talk Talk house. Some staff are giving out old information. He apologised. Nicely. In a lovely accent.
It brought back happy memories of eating ostritch in Cape Town.

Fine. So lets move on to the new terms shall we.

All I have to do is fill in a form. But he will note the account now so that a manager has started the process of the change of ownership.
Thank you very much.
I give him the new phone number.
No. He says. Not a talk talk account.
It is. The information form you get with the contract of sale says it is. I have been talking to the sellers. They assure me it is. They have just been talking to you about the account you say they don't have.
Ah, he says. Maybe they are with one of the companies in the Talk Talk group that is not actually Talk Talk but which sell Talk Talk branded products.

I ring the vendors. "They say you are not Talk Talk,  but you are aren't you? Thats what you put on the forms." There is a little pause.
"Well, kind of.  Its Tiscali I think but we get a Talk Talk logo on the bill."

I give up. I let them disconnect the line and book me an engineer to arrive 5 days after I move in. I pay them an adminstration fee to do so. All I want is to have my tea and watch Grey's Anatomy on TV.
Is that asking too much?


Gerrie said...

ROTFLMAO!! Of course, I read this with your voice going on and on. I am glad I was not sipping red wine.

Karen said...

That was an excellent rant, I couldn't have done better myself.

Feather on a Wire said...

Talk Talk can send you insane. I find going into our local Carphone Warehouse (who are Talk Talk and we know on first name terms these days) and getting them to sort out problems works. You should have been me trying to get Tall Talk Global (not Talk Talk International which is another beast). BTW if you can stand the suffering involved and you make international calls, it enables you to ring (most of) the world included in your bill for about a £ extra a month.

Rachel said...

Great rant - I have every sympathy for you.

No, it's not too much to ask, but have you noticed how often organisations that should do "customer service" actually do "driving the customer mad"?

Margeeth said...

Right, this is absolutely the same in England as over here in the Netherlands. When we sold our house, the new owner thought to be clever and arrange his phone, tv and internet for after he moved in as soon as the selling contract was signed. A lot of phonecalls, frustrations, talking to people in callcenters who just know how to read from scripts and nothing more later, he ended up with having to wait a month to have phone, tv and internet after he moved in and we ended up with bills for service we couldn't use.

Rayna said...

AAARRRRRGGGGGGHHHH! Remind me to tell you my Comcast Cable story when I see you!
We have all been something this insane - just change the country and the name of the vendor and we've all been there. You have my sympathies. LOL.

Patty Ashworth said...

Wow, been there, and been through it. Different company names, but it's why I'm still with AT&T.... I'm paying more, but it's too much of a hassel to change companies. Verizon Wireless is just as bad. And the cable tv company (with internet service) is just as bad. And they call us and try to get us to "bundle" services. I just laugh and tell them that if they can't keep the tv on, then they don't get the phone service too. They try to switch me to repair, and I always end up on a dead phone.... If you don't laugh, you'll go crazy.

Deborah Boschert said...

This is why we are not getting a land line in the new house. We're going to try cells only.

Sorry for your hassle. I hope every single other bit of your transition is much more smooth!

Kristin L said...

Arghhhhh! I have been lucky enough to not have such an ordeal yet (knock wood) with telecommunications, but military red tape pretty much results in the same head banging.