I have accumulated so many examples of totally inadequate service from firms, usually in the form of a useless response — or no response — to matters raised, that I feel it a duty to publicise just two opposite experiences.
Take a firm such as DStv MultiChoice: its accounts section has simply refused to send annual accounts to those customers who choose to pay upfront. Instead, an innocent-looking e-mail arrives with the amount payable, and sometimes for the wrong period. Later, after payment, a demand comes with the snide suggestion that the bill be paid so "you can continue enjoying the feast of programmes that you love".
Then the DStv Dish magazine stops arriving after June 2017. Despite many e-mails, gradually growing in intensity and frustration, there is still no delivery, despite promises to do so — after stating the June issue was the last. After proving that friends received the July and August issues, I found, in our external driveway, a copy that must have come by air!
It’s the "your team" or some similarly cosy but meaningless letters that suggest utter arrogance and lack of interest. I would not have believed the bosses would condone this sort of treatment, but it is a monopoly!
Then you have Momentum Health, which has trained, polite and efficient call-centre employees who nearly always satisfy this client’s queries. When escalated, the difficult queries obtain meaningful responses.
This moan must end with the ubiquitous but ludicrous questionnaires — the ones that will "only take three minutes of your time". These serve no purpose to the firm paying for the service, and most trip up on the way they are constructed: one means worst and 10 means best. There is no reference to when or who one is judging, nor a genuine space for comments.
And there’s never a response to a thoughtful contribution. What do they do with the scoring sheets? It’s needless to guess. It’s surely a total waste of effort and a missed opportunity.