Having wasted months with VM Complaints team and been treated consistently with contempt I am now awaiting a DSAR which I am certain will demonstrate that the complaints system is not fit for purpose but will strengthen my case that there are fundamental systems issues at VM which are either designed to frustrate complainants and/or the result of incompetence at a high level which filters down to the minions. We are now at "deadlock" and I am off to CISAS to see if they have the power to investigate systemic problems - including routinely giving inaccurate information and almost always failing to call back, e mail or turn up on time.
Has anyone experience of dealing with CISAS and/or Offcom?
The longer my complaints have progressed, the worse it gets with virtually everyone I have had contact broadly untrustworthy/unreliable and/or discourteous almost as if this were the normal way to deal with customers. I am less concerned at the compensation, more the culture and the fact that most people will be ground down by the continual failure to be truthful or reasonable. Heaven help older or more vulnerable people who will simply have to accept a dreadful service with no sensible route to complaint and be treated other than with disdain. I am now beyond the stage of resenting the time wasted with VM and their pathetic and insulting "compensation". CISAS will no doubt be an interesting exercise but I would appreciate if anyone has any useful advice while I wait 30 or 40 days for VM version of my complaint(s). In summary I have 20/30 separate instances of "errors" in relation to what started out as a faulty broadband (utilisation issues!). My latest £85 compensation was agreed in writing as paid on Oct 19 but was not in fact paid at all - then withdrawn following a telecom with a "manager" when we reached "deadlock" - at which point the complaint is closed down and VM will not engage - really shocking, unprofessional and petty.
Obviously i dont know the particulars of your complaint, but one thing I can comment on is your last sentence.
That's simply the procedure. If you've had a deadlock letter issued, they simply wont engage with you because at that point its a matter for CISAS. Ive used adjudication before in a different setting and had exactly that experience, that when the matter went to the adjudicator the company refused to speak to me directly.
Thats not to excuse the way you say you have been treated, just for your information.
HI Just to confirm that the compensation had been stated as having been paid BEFORE deadlock was reached. I had actually had 2 previous payments of smaller amounts. The fact is that a letter (which was a long time coming and failed to address the main issues) stated that my account had been credited - we subsequently, some time after, reached deadlock over the telephone but it turns out the payment was not made and has subsequently been withdrawn! Unprofessional and petty.
Sadly paying out of compensation only happens when you've agreed the complaint has been resolved, they never pay out before, as if you still are not happy the payment was (for them) pointless, therefore they don't pay it.
Congratulations grogers497!! I too have had a very stressful ordeal, and frustrating experience dealing with the incompetent systems, customer services and customer complaints procedure. I am so worn down by the whole affair, so forgive me for not going into much detail and nitty gritty. Basically I endured almost 4 months of trying to come to a resolve to my problem, and dealing with their incompetent procedures. It all started when I cancelled my contract within the 14 day period (due to already having experienced a catalogue of errors from the onset). The cancellation that I registered was back in December.....still to find myself trying to progress the cancellation and a number of other complaints in April, which now included subsequent errors they had made during that time - one amongst the many issues included the failure for them to issue and for me to receive a returns bag for the device to be returned, which finally turned up 2.5 months later. Throughout a short period of time I had made in excess of 45 + follow up calls (which I have on a CD disc, following my request to Virgin to receive audio recordings of all calls made ). I was the only one during the whole time that made strenuous efforts to follow things up to progress a resolve to my very painful ordeal. A thousand promises to call me back, which never did occur (apart from the occasional few), 3 complaints service letters later advising me that someone would be in touch (only to then find out they were attempting to contact me on my old number that no longer existed due to their PAC transfer failing and becoming corrupt and which their systems and incorrect records failed to recognise) a number of bills and payment requests and additional errors later I was finally contacted and offered compensation (end of April), although I refused to accept. The reasons being similar to those of some who have already posted here, which was being so outraged and tired by the lack of customer care and the companies own failure to follow their own procedures that encompass a range of inadequate systems and processes. For me it was less about the compensation but more about the principle of them addressing the culture of inadequacies and errors that were allowed to continue, and the fact that I really wanted this to be formally addressed and explored. Needless to say by refusing the compensation I acceptably triggered deadlock and have since received the deadlock letter (even with wrong detailed info!). I had logged all calls and dates, with ID references of the majority of customer service staff I spoke with. Since then I have had a break because the whole affair was so draining and actually made me feel really unwell due to the levels of stress I had to endure trying to be heard, and to have my situation resolved.
I am now ready to log my complaint with CISAS. I have had bad customer service before, and I usually just let it go. However this experience with Virgin was just so bad, by principle I feel I must not let it go unnoticed. What I have written here (which I appreciate is already a lot!!!...sorry about that) does not really demonstrate the extent of the issues I was dealing with. Apologies for that, but hopefully you get the jist of my problem. Even when speaking to the mediator who tried to offer compensation before I triggered the deadlock, he advised me that my case was the worst he had ever witnessed, as did one other complaints manager prior to that!
grogers497 please may I inquire as to what the nature of your complaint was, which you have since successfully had resolved with CISAS and how detailed (and/or stressful) the experience was? ....I am just keen to hear the type of complaint that was resolved and how much effort you had to put in...as quite frankly Virgin has drained me of all energy, Im not sure how much fight I have left in me! Many thanks in advance, and to all others here experiencing similar problems, I wish you all the very best in arriving at a solution that is satisfactory to each of you! All the very best.
Exactly the experience I had where ultimately my issue is the fundamental lack of proper process and any sense of respectful customer service. My complaint went to deadlock but I, like you have not had the time or energy to go to CISAS. VM are equally dreadful for business - I think it is just a culture that comes from the senior level. CISAS when I spoke to them didn't seem that fussed about systemic problems - which is the issue at VM, just individual contractual matters. When you examine the small print VM (and other providers) are not under much obligation to provide an efficient service and operate with any care for their customers. Unfortunately, the same is true of other large corporates providing utilities. Good luck with your clain.