It’s Not A Hard Knock Life As A Deliveryman

, , , , , , | Working | February 12, 2020

I’m working at home. My wife and daughter are also in the house; my daughter is studying in her room, right next to the front door.

We have a wooden front door with a really loud brass door knocker. Although it’s a 100-year-old, three-floor house with thick walls and floors, the sound of the knocker easily carries everywhere.

For some reason, many delivery drivers choose to ignore the knocker and rap gently on the glass of the door, instead.

At lunch time, I wander out of the living room where I have been working to find a Missed Delivery card through the letterbox. Cue mental face-palm, as I have been sat within 20 feet of the front door since about 8:00 am.

When I visit the courier’s web site and enter the tracking details, I get a message that says, “Sorry we missed you; we’ll try again tomorrow,” complete with a photo of our front door, large brass knocker front-and-centre.

Nice to know they really tried to get my attention.

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That Is Not Her Custom

, , , , | Right | February 6, 2020

(I help a lady ship something internationally. We have a global shipping reference guide to what paperwork needs to go with what items to which countries. She is shipping to a country where only the shipping information is required for documents. For any other item, you have to fill out a commercial invoice, even if it’s not a commercial product. The woman is shipping a dog DNA test so she can adopt a dog from this country. I ask what that consists of and she says it is only documents, and it fits in our standard 12-by-9 envelope so I believe her. She pays around 100 dollars because she wants next-day delivery to another country. This incident occurs the next day.)

Me: “Hi, ma’am, how may I help you?”

(I don’t immediately recognize her because yesterday she was pleasant and today she looks ANGRY.)

Customer: “I WANT MY PACKAGE BACK, AND I WANT MY $100 BACK!”

(My manager is helping someone a few feet away from me as it’s a small store so she, along with everyone else, hears the customer.)

Manager: “[My Name], please help this customer; I’ll help her.” *to the irate customer* “How can I help you, ma’am?”

Customer: “I WANT MY MONEY AND I WANT MY PACKAGE!”

Manager: “Okay, when did you give us your package?”

Customer: “Yesterday.”

Manager: “We don’t have your package any longer; every day our packages get picked up by drivers so they can be delivered to where they need to go. May I ask why you need your package?”

Customer: “THEY’RE NOT SENDING MY PACKAGE! THEY SAY I NEED AN INVOICE AND NOBODY TOLD ME THAT! I NEED THAT PACKAGE TO BE THERE TODAY!”

Manager: “Let me call the station.”

(The manager calls and has a short discussion with a manager at the station and then puts her on hold.)

Manager: “Okay, it seems like all you need is to fill out a commercial invoice. You can fill it out right now and I’ll fax it to her and it will be on its way.”

Customer: “NO! I SHOULDN’T HAVE TO FILL THAT OUT. I’M NOT SELLING ANYTHING! NO ONE TOLD ME I HAD TO FILL IT OUT!”

Manager: “[My Name], can you speak with the station manager on the phone, please?”

Me: *picks up the phone* “This is [My Name].”

Station Manager: “So, it says here that it’s only documents.”

Me: *recognizes the customer by this point* “That is what she told me, and the SRG states that if it’s only documents, it doesn’t need a commercial invoice. In fact, that was the only thing for [Country] that doesn’t require a commercial invoice.”

Station Manager: “If that’s what she told you, you did nothing wrong. However, she lied. I have the package in my hand and I clearly feel swabs. If these are clean, we just need a commercial invoice, but if they are used samples, that’s a whole different story. I just wanted to make sure we’re in the clear. You can go back to work.”

(My manager takes the phone and backs up my story, because she helped me out with that lady yesterday.)

Manager: “All right, ma’am, so we have a few options here. You can either go down to the station and pick up your package, or you can call the 800-number and request that it be sent back here and you can pick it up tomorrow. Unfortunately, we cannot give you back cash as this occurred yesterday and we’ve already given the bank drop. There’s no way to refund cash if it’s not the same day. You’ll get a check in the mail in six to eight weeks.”

Customer: “YOU F****** HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME! GIVE ME MY F****** MONEY AND GIVE ME MY F****** PACKAGE!”

Manager: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but neither your money nor your package is here. You’ll get your check in six to eight weeks and, as I said, you can pick up your package right now or have it delivered here tomorrow and pick it up then.” 

Customer: “THIS IS F****** RIDICULOUS! I’M GOING TO GO TO THE POST OFFICE! I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU F****** B****** WON’T JUST GIVE ME MY STUFF! I NEED THAT PACKAGE TO BE DELIVERED TODAY!”

Manager: “Well, you still have the option to fill out a commercial invoice right here. I’ll fax it over as soon as you complete it, they’ll attach it, and it will leave today.”

Customer: “NO! I SHOULDN’T HAVE TO DO THAT!”

Manager: “That’s actually a requirement of customs, not of [Company I work for].”

Customer: “NO! I’M GOING TO SHIP WITH THE POST OFFICE! WHERE IS MY PACKAGE?!”

Manager: “It’s at [address of facility]. Have a nice day.”

(The best part of this whole thing is that the post office will also require a commercial invoice because, as my manager said, it’s a customs requirement and not my company’s. Plus, they don’t have next-day international shipping. I would have given my paycheck to see her face when the post office asked her to fill it out.)

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Why Santa Shouldn’t Outsource

, , , , , , , | Working | December 25, 2019

Some years back, I was ordering Christmas presents online. A few days later, the website informed me that my packages had been delivered, but I had nothing. I checked with apartment management. They were actually surprised that nothing at all had been delivered for two days — unusual for a large apartment complex.

I had a tracking number with USPS, so clearly the next stop was the post office. I showed the tracking number. They showed me that their computer said it had been delivered to me. I showed empty hands. I was frustrated and I’m sure they were thinking I was another crook wanting free stuff. They asked me again for the delivery address. I told the clerk and then her eyes widened and her demeanor changed. I was told that, during the Christmas rush, they sometimes hired independent contractors for deliveries. She suggested I try the neighboring apartment complexes.

Since I had no other choice at that point, I went to the one closest to me. I walked into their offices — which also housed their mini gym and lounge area — and was shocked to see the place looking like a warehouse. Boxes were stacked to eye level against every bit of open wall space. More were on tables and chairs.

I eventually found my packages. Apparently, the contractor wanted to make an easy score. He showed up at the first big apartment complex on the route with all the packages for three apartment complexes and about a square mile or more of residential neighborhoods and simply unloaded his truck into their offices. The lone secretary at the time was confused and overwhelmed. 

Ho! Ho! Ho! Thanks, dirty Santa.

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Sadly This Story Is Not Bull

, , , | Working | November 15, 2019

(I work as a package handler at a major shipping company, scanning the packages and putting them up in the trailer to head to their next destination. We have meetings once every month about various safety procedures. On this night, it’s about hazmats. They are basically things that can pose a health risk if they are damaged or leaking, like corrosives, explosives, flammable solids, etc. Our HR rep is talking to us about what we do and do not accept when the issue of human biological matter comes up. We absolutely do not take any of it at all: no blood, urine, feces, etc. We’re all nodding along when, all of a sudden, my coworker — who has worked here for a while — pipes up with this gem:)

Coworker: “I don’t mean to be crude or make a joke… but haven’t we accept bull semen before?”

(It got so quiet that you could hear the heartbeat of a flea. After that, everyone stayed dead silent as the HR rep finished the meeting by saying, “We have accepted it before, although I don’t know why. I mean, I consider it biological, even if it’s not human.” I think we were unanimously thinking the same thing: “What has leaked out of damaged boxes onto my hands before?” And now, I plan on wearing latex gloves under my work gloves, because ew.)

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Will Be Scanning Around For A New Job

, , , , , | Working | October 3, 2019

For weeks, I’ve been doing a collection at a fairly secure site where the truck is filled with new credit cards, and then I take them to the distribution centre to be scanned and split to the country/area they are going to. It isn’t unusual for me to be driving 100,000 of them. I’m tracked all the way by everybody.

Today, they decided that I have to scan everything onto the system with my courier handset so it is logged at collection. That’s a glorified smartphone with a barcode scanner. So, no loading the boxes full of individually addressed envelopes. 

Each one is scanned.

I am instructed to scan each one to the correct client. Pretty sure a computer can read barcodes and do a lookup but I can’t. I have to go by the destination sheets and then double-check everything because the sender doesn’t care.

Five hours later, after scanning 8500 envelopes containing credit cards, I drop them off at the depot, who rescans them by chucking them on the belt with the fancy cameras that can read a barcode at 40 feet and assign everything properly.

I say to my manager, “So, I wasted all that time?”

He says, “No, now we know how long it takes to do it properly. Just stick the first account number on all of them next time, since the belt does the rest.”

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