Priority Training Wasn’t Given Priority

, , , , , , | Working | August 30, 2018

(I’m an IT helpdesk manager. Over the summer, we have a lot of projects, and as such we are trying to get customers to help themselves rather than relying on us to hold their hands when fixing their problems. I come back from a meeting to one of the first-line guys with a call on hold. He passes it to me as the woman on the other end is causing a bit of a fuss. She’s lost a folder in her email application. It happens all the time. Usually it’s just an accidental drag and drop into another folder. She won’t listen to my instructions to find it.)

Caller: “Send someone round to my desk, now!

(She’s literally a data entry clerk; she has no urgent work. I try again to coach her on how to find the folder herself. She doesn’t want to know.)

Me: “I would advise you to log a ticket on our system with the details, and we’ll get back to you.”

(Ten minutes later, a “Priority One” ticket appears. When you log this, it tells you this is only for full system outages, power cuts, or VIP tickets. The ticket has no extra information, only, “Lost email folder. Send someone to help ASAP.” I then get two emails: one from my boss, and one from his boss. They’ve been notified that a “Priority One” ticket has been raised, and they want to know why. I downgrade it to a “Priority Three,” and attach some basic instructions for the user to follow, advising that if she still can’t find the folder after following the instructions, then we’ll assign someone from second-line support to look at it for her.)


(Now she’s getting it. I closed the ticket, asking her not to log “Priority One” tickets for non-critical matters again. My replies to my boss and his boss were also copied to her boss, who replied to all that he would remind her not to do that again.)

At One Point Apple Users Were All Sixes And Sevens

, , , , | Right | July 26, 2018

(I work for a company that does tech repairs. One day we get a customer asking if we do phone repairs.)

Customer: “Hi, do you do phone repairs?”

Me: “Yes, we do. What is it?”

Customer: “Oh, it’s a six.”

Me: “Which phone?”

Customer: “Just a normal six.”

(Eventually she clicked and told me it was an iPhone 6.)

A Big Mayo No No, Part 5

, , , , , , | | Working | May 17, 2018

(I am running late and don’t have time to make lunch in the morning, so I think I’ll treat myself at a nearby fast food restaurant that has a drive-thru. I pull up to the speaker, and ask for a [chicken sandwich], no mayo.)

Employee: “What mayo was that?”

Me: “No mayo, please.”

Employee: “Hot mayo?”

Me: “No. NO mayonnaise, please. None. No mayo.”

Employee: “So, like, plain?”

Me: “I guess.”

(At the first window, as I pay, I confirm that the sandwich will have all the salad, etc., just no mayo.)

Employee: “Yes, no problem.”

(I’m sceptical. Luckily, there’s nobody immediately behind me when I pull up to the second window to get my food, so I check. Yeah, it’s missing all the salad; it’s literally just a chicken burger in a dry bun. I ask for it to be rectified, and the lady argues with me that I ordered it plain, so it came plain. Eventually a manager comes over,and tells me the same thing. Apparently, it is impossible to order a [chicken sandwich] without mayo but still with the other bits. By now, they’re showing me the ordering system screen, so I can see their predicament. They don’t understand that I don’t care, and all I want is for them to stick their token lettuce, onions, etc., in the thing so I can at least pretend to be vaguely healthy. They go through all the permutations of ordering the [chicken sandwich] until I suggest something.)

Me: “Choose, ‘spicy mayo.’”

(They did it. An option then appeared for “no mayo.” Their system was set up that they had to choose one of the three mayo options — cool, spicy, chilli — to able to remove it. And it took someone who had never seen that system before to work it out.)

A Big Mayo No No, Part 4
A Big Mayo No No, Part 3
A Big Mayo No No, Part 2

A Middling Successful Attempt

, , , , , , | Working | May 8, 2018

(I work as a lot attendant at a grocery store. The produce manager there has a running gag where he will occasionally say an employee’s first name, a random middle name, and their last name, when calling them to his department over the PA. Everyone gets a kick out of it. One day when I’m inside for safety reasons due to a thunderstorm, it goes a step further.)

Manager: *on PA* “[My First Name]… [My Real Middle Name]… [My Last Name]… Come to produce, please.”

(I try very hard to contain my laughter as I make my way to the produce department.)

Me: “Hey, [Manager], what’s up? By the way, I’ll be honest: I wasn’t expecting you to get it on the first try!”

(We both burst out laughing. It turns out that was the first time in over 20 years working for the company that he accidentally got an employee’s full name right.)

Free Numbers Do Not Free Up Staff

, , , , , | Working | April 26, 2018

About six months ago, the company I work for decided to create a new small team to deal with what they call “pre-sales inquiries.” Basically, it is a product information line; they can help tell you if product X we sell is compatible with product Y, etc., or what the most suitable product would be for a certain installation, and where to buy or order them. The idea is to free up the Customer Services team to deal with inquiries from people who have already bought our products and have a problem with them.

I work in the technical side of the business, so I was asked to provision a Freephone number for this new team. Our Customer Service line is a low-cost, but still chargeable call, so this would be the only Freephone number in the business. Despite my protests, the management insisted; apparently it will encourage customers to buy our products if they can get free information. I can’t argue with that, but you can see the approaching issue, can’t you?

Sure enough, customers have now caught on to the fact that you can dial the Freephone number, and ask to be put through to customer service. The pre-sales team have been keeping a tally; this morning alone they have taken over 50 calls that were actually for customer service. Management still can’t understand what’s going on. They’ve asked to make sure all the websites have the correct numbers on. They do.

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