BT : Banging your head against a brick wall

  ened 16:53 12 May 2008

Two months ago I spoke to a girl in Sales at BT and arranged for a cheaper price on my line.
I took the girl’s name and she gave me a reference number.

So far so good!

Today I received a bill in which the line rental has not been reduced.

I telephone sales and (bizarrely) am put through to billing, who, after a long discussion, decide I need to speak to sales.

Eventually she agreed that she would get somebody to call me back.

A chap from India just called and I had a difficulty understanding him – but nobody has heard of the original sales person and the reference number ‘doesn’t exist’!

What can one do with such an organisation?

  961 17:17 12 May 2008

Write a letter to the Chairman's Office or phone the Chairman's office 0207 356 5000

Talking to India is a head banging exercise mainly because their computer data seems to be totally un up to date

  Forum Editor 18:05 12 May 2008

I had to call BT Broadband support on Saturday morning - the first time I've done that since broadband was first launched in this country and I signed up.

The problem was my new BT home-hub, which I agreed to try because I thought I ought to know about how they work; I've always used routers from the big-name companies like Belkin. The home hub kept dropping the connection, and when I pressed the reset button it would connect and drop again five minutes later.

I got through to the Indian call centre, and a very helpful girl said "Don't worry Peter, we can fix this". I was impressed, but dubious. I agreed to be stepped through a few diagnostic tests, one of which was a remote line test "Give me your mobile number" she said "and I'll ring you on that, we can talk while I test your landline".

I did, she rang, we talked. After a minute or so she said "Your line's fine, now we'll test the hub" We did, and she said "I think I have the answer - pull the power lead from the back of the hub, wait 30 seconds and put it back - then tell me what happens". I did, it connected first time.

"What was the problem?" I asked. "You powered the hub off last time you disconnected, didn't you?" she said "Yes" I replied "I've always done that with my routers" "Don't do that with this hub", she said - "leave it permanently powered on". I have, and the connection has been perfect ever since.

Now I know that was probably quite a simple call for the girl in India, and I made a point of being very friendly and non-stressed - I know what it's like to be on the receiving end of irate calls. The fact remains, it was a good customer-service experience, and I was very impressed by the professionalism of the girl I spoke to - she sounded as if she knew exactly what she was talking about.

  peter99co 18:29 12 May 2008

Are you happy to leave your Hub powered on? If you lose power to it for any reason, how will you restore the connection? Did India have to reset it for you?

  Forum Editor 18:33 12 May 2008

is meaningful - it would have been generated on the system and I'm very surprised to hear that 'it doesn't exist'.

I'm inclined to agree with 961's feeling that the indian system may not have been updated properly, but even that shouldn't be possible - the UK and Indian systems are linked.

Someone, somewhere in the organisation isn't doing his/her job properly, and you're the unfortunate person on the other end of it. I would pursue the matter to the bitter end.

  Forum Editor 18:36 12 May 2008

Yep, I'm happy. If the hub loses power I can start from scratch, and no, India didn't reset anything - I did. India established the cause of the problem, and told me what to do.

If I had sat and fiddled for half an hour I would probably have achieved the same end, but I was in a hurry, had never called the BT helpline, and thought it would be a useful experience, which it was.

  ened 06:51 13 May 2008

I'm pleased you managed to get a matter resolved so easily, but I think you were probably lucky to have that particular girl answer the call.

I had a billing issue with AOL and explained it to the guy right at the beginning. He said:

" Okay Mr ******* I am absolutely going to definitely resolve this for you this afternoon".

Half an hour later and after he had disappeared for advice several times he decided it was not his department.

When I asked him why he didn't say that at the outset he just said he was sorry I felt like that!

That was not a criticism of AOL because I managed to be put through to a guy in Waterford who sorted it in minutes (And admitted it was their fault!!!!).

  ened 07:01 13 May 2008

Recently BT wrote and stated they were putting me onto a new system with call divert etc.

This was to be free and the only drawback was I would be committed to a 12 month contract.

This would be starting automatically unless I contacted them to say I didn't want it.

That was the afternoon I wasted three quarters of an hour being passed from pillar to post before finally being told they would cancel something I had not even asked for. It was worth the wait because I had a reference number for that request as well and they still put me on the new system.

That was also the time I negotiated a new price. The frustrating thing is that I was given certain telephone numbers so that I would not have to wait in queues again should something go wrong, which they did!

This does not involve large sums of money but I am going to pursue it when I have spare moments.

  Mike D 07:51 13 May 2008

I am normally a staunch supporter of BT (as an ex manager there of), but, like ened, I have tried on 3 occasions to prevent call diversion being put onto my office line with a new 12 month contract. The sales team seem to be incapable of realising that I don't need to be contact once my training centre is closed. People who do need to contact me already know all my alternative numbers. I don't yet know whether the last call worked.


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