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strigoi
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Absolutely The Most Appaulling Customer Service Experience Ever Experienced

This afternoon I had without doubt the worse experience I have ever had with a customer services agent at Virgin.

Background: My 80 year old father recently had a stroke, and neither he or my 77 year old mother has topped-up their Virgin PAYG accounts - both forgetful and finding those types of transactions more and more difficult; causing a lot of anxiety for the family.

So, I decided to take out 2 contracts, one for each, with 3-mobile so they didn't have to top-up. Sims arrives - so far so good.

Today: Easy I thought, all I need to do is order a PAC code to port there numbers from virgin to 3.

This where it started to get troublesome. My fathers shortcode text message PAC<DOB> option works a treat - sorted. My mothers attempt however consistently failed i.e. "SIM1" errors on send. Checked the forums - sure enough others reporting the same problem.

Ok, Customer Services here we come. Called then at approx 16:00 today on 789 (I shadowed her on loud-speaker as she's forgetful so wanted to hear what was being asked so I could translate if required). We speak to "Brimo".

First hurdle: what's your mobile number - easy, got that one. Next, what's your password - she didn't even remember setting a password even following a hint of the reminder. 

Ok, "when did she last top-up?" - absolutely not idea. She top-ups up at local shop using cash and does not keep receipts. Just to compound the situation the Lenovo phone disposes of text messages after a certain period of time so not record of the top-up at all.

So we have an impasse! 

After asking him to stop talking over the top of both my mum and myself, I asked whether there was another question that he could ask that she might remember. Answer: "No - she'll have to call back in when she remembers!". What? I tried to politely explain that she was not going to remember no matter how many days we left. After I believe circa 28 mins on the call asking for:

(a) a different question to authenticate her,

(b) to speak to a supervisor (which he refused point blank),

(c) he mentioned I believe a 'remediation team?' which we were not allowed to speak to cos we could not authenticate in the first place

.... from which I concluded, and stated as such, that he was expecting my elderly mother to call in n-times giving a different top-up date each time, until she may happen to hit on the correct date - absolutely ridiculous!

Then, the icing on the cake - he hung up on us!

This was wrong on so many levels, putting aside his general rudeness, which was shameful in its own right. Overall my mother was being held to ransom by a process - expecting an infirm elderly woman to remember details about transactions that could have happened weeks ago. Callous!

I understand the need for customer to verify their identity (I work as an analyst in the Telco industry). But any process should have exception routes and this should have been one of those occassions.

Virigin should be ashamed that this is the experience they are providing to some of their customers, and it would appear certain agents are in urgent needs of re-training (I want to use other words but 'm in polite company here); I so hope that call was recorded - I really do.

PS: Contrast this with our experience 35 mins later when we tried on the off chance. We explained the situation again (spoke to Joy), and was directed to provide the sim number from the sim in her phone, having provided my mobile number for them to call us on. Verified, PAC received - sorted! So it is possible!

I so hope someone from Virgin reads this and takes action - luckily everyone in the family has now moved away from Virgin for broadly the same types of CS experiences.

Thanks for listening - Think I need a glass of wine now!!

 

 

 

 

 

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Alex_RM
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Re: Absolutely The Most Appaulling Customer Service Experience Ever Experienced

Hi strigoi,

 

Thanks for posting and welcome to our community.

 

I'm truly sorry to hear of your recent experience with us, it's disappointing to hear.

 

While we do need to ensure data protection has been cleared before we can discuss the account, I agree the way you were spoken to/ talked over is not how we'd expect an agent to behave.

 

I am happy to hear that you were able to get this sorted in the end, if you do need me to raise a complaint regarding this please let me know and I can pop you over a private message.

 

Alex_Rm

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strigoi
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Re: Absolutely The Most Appaulling Customer Service Experience Ever Experienced

Hi Alex

Thank you for responding so rapdily.

I am not usually one for raising complaints but in this instance I would like to do that pls.

Fundamentally:

1. The verification process appears to be flawed with no exception route (e.g. elderly person either not understanding the question or being able to remember answers to very specific questions), or indeed (in this case) no desire to cascade thru a series of questions, one of which could be answered (this is at least the experience we unfortunately had today, resulting in my mum in tears).

NB: Even the Joy resolution required me removing the SIM and reading point 2 font text off the SIM in order to resolve the situation - something an average 80 year old is likely to struggle with.

2. The extremely unprofessional and quite frankly rude behaviour by the agent in question (Brimo). It is far too late for us personally to see any improvement here, but if this issue is brought to his attention and suitable CS re/training being provided this may avoid someone else experiencing this behaviour and associated stress.

Is that sufficient? Anything else I/we need to provide?

PS: Pat on the back to Joy for being the exact opposite to Brimo - credit to VM there!

Many thanks

Tony

 

 

 

 

 

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Alex_RM
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Re: Absolutely The Most Appaulling Customer Service Experience Ever Experienced

Thanks for getting back to me so quickly Tony,

 

I'm more than happy to get this raised for you, I will need to do this over a private message, as I'll need a few more details in order to do so (purple envelope, top right hand corner)

 

Alex_Rm

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luvmytech
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Re: Absolutely The Most Appaulling Customer Service Experience Ever Experienced

hello, 

I have had exactly the same experience as yourself several times. The conclusion we can come to is that Virgin really couldn't care less about this area of their service and have done some kind of calculation that treating customers this way will not harm their business. Shocking but I think true. 

Hope you get things sorted

 

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