I get a lot of parcels, and I'm on first name terms with most of the delivery drivers. As our house is not on a street (but through a rather impressive set of gates), it sometimes causes problems. Usually when a new driver is on, or the existing driver suffers a serious brain injury.
But it works most of the time. Even Yodel - the worst delivery company in the world - can find the place.
So I was somewhat surprised to receive an email from UPS, telling me that my address was incomplete, and needed an apartment number. Really? The address hasn't changed in over 200 years, and certainly not in the last 15 years I've been here.
So I clicked on the very-spammy looking email, went to the genuine UPS site and saw that yes, indeed, they wanted me to update my address. And I had to click on a 'Change my address' button. That wasn't on the web site. Damn.
So I called up their call centre, navigated a hellish call tree, and reached a stage where they wanted me to SPEAK the 300 digit tracking number. Sod that. Scotsmen and voice recognition systems don't mix. So I hung up, called again, and spent even longer getting through to a human operator.
The rather pleasant and professional young man had an immediate problem with my accent, but using interpretive dance and mime, managed to get my record on screen. Whereupon he stuck me on hold for five minutes.
When he came back, he repeated exactly what the web site had said, suggesting that I could have used the web site.
Well, actually, no I could not have, as I didn't get the option. Why didn't I use the automated voice led systems? No chance.
So finally, I confirmed my address - exactly the one they already had - and my number - exactly the one they already had, and I mercilessly lectured the young man on how shit the service had been so far. I even told him I hoped that this call was recorded, so perhaps UPS could learn from these fundamental support issues.
Once I had vented my spleen, I asked him which country he was based in. South East Asia. Fine .
So some muppet in Dundee - 30 miles south - couldn't figure out the address for my property ((that hasn't changed in 200 years), I tried to fix it on their crap web site in the US, and finally the call was routed half way around the world.
I do wish these large corporations would just tell their bean counters to ram a pencil up their nose instead of listening to the constant dirge of 'cost cutting' and 'consolidate call centres' instead of actually - oh, I don't know - focus on actual customer bloody service?
Exceptional customer service as bad this this deserves praise. And so I think I'll send them a small plaque, containing a picture of a dog turd, with the inscription 'UPS is SHIT'.
Irony Update: What wondrous thing was UPS going to deliver? Uninterruptible Power Supplies...