Ever since it was first available I’ve had Verizon’s blindingly fast FiOS service at home. I started with the comprehensive bundle (TV/Phone/Internet) and had a great experience. Recently, for a host of reasons, I decided to switch to a separate phone service.
So, a couple months ago, I called Verizon, explained that I was moving my phone service, UPGRADED my TV and Internet service, and let them know my phone number would be moving to another carrier.
For some reason, in spite of my call to them and in spite of my upgrade, they have a process that automatically assumes they should cancel all your service if you move away your phone number. Here’s an excerpt from the email Verizon sent me:
We know how important your Verizon FiOS services are to you. Therefore, we need to be sure that our records correctly reflect the status of your remaining FiOS services following your recent request to change your voice telephone service to another provider.
If you wish to continue your remaining FiOS services (TV or Data), please contact us within the next 10 days at XXX-XXX-XXXX Monday-Friday between 11:00 AM and 9:00 PM ET so that we can update our records.
If you do not wish to retain your remaining Verizon FiOS services, you do not need to take any action. Your service will be suspended after 10 days. Any charges incurred for FiOS service following completion of your order to cancel Verizon voice service will automatically be credited within one to two bill cycles.
We appreciate your business! Your complete satisfaction is our goal.
I take full responsibility at this point for missing that email. I found it when feverishly searching yesterday for some explanation for the outage.
Why would anyone at Verizon think this was a good idea? Why set the default at “we’ll cancel everything even though you didn’t ask for that”? If I wanted to cancel the rest of the services wouldn’t I say so when I received the next bill? If not and I paid Verizon would still have a paying customer!
Even if there’s some reason to make that the default, why not override that default on the phone call when I told you I wanted to not only keep but UPGRADE the other services?
It gets better, though. As soon as they turn off the other services they place the entire account in a special “suspended” mode. Accounts in “suspended mode” can no longer log into the Verizon web site. So, I’m forced to call. I call the main Verizon number (I haven’t found the email with the special number yet) and after numerous prompts to try to get to tech support I get a cryptic message that says that “due to the status of your account Tech Support cannot assist you at this time”. I finally get a human who says she has to transfer me to a special department. Her attempt to transfer me ends in a dial tone.
But wait, there’s more! This experience sends me searching through my email where I find the one above with the special phone number. Yes, I should have seen the email when it first came. Yes, all this would have been avoided if it hadn’t been missed or ignored and I had only called them to tell them I really wanted what I’d just told them I wanted. I kicked myself and called the number, where a helpful rep told me (at 6pm now) that she had “put in the order” and that service would be restored “within 4 hours”.
By midnight there was still no service. I called Verizon’s Tech Support. They confirmed that the “order” had never been “put in”. They also confirmed that the group that is only open 11-9 EST is the only group that can “put in the order” to allow Verizon’s system to reconnect with my home.
So, after an hour of calls and 20 hours of waiting, I still don’t have service. I am cautiously optimistic that I might in the next 5 hours though.
What Policies/Procedures do you have that cause problems?
It took a host of policies to put me in this 25+ hour ordeal.
- The default is set to cancel all services.
- The chosen notification method is only one email.
- Web site access is prohibited for “suspended” accounts.
- Only one “group” can change account status.
- The only group that can change status is only accessible by phone AND is only open for limited hours.
- No one – including tech support – has any override ability on account status or the necessary “work order” creation.
Do you have policies that cause your customers problems? Have you reconsidered any of them lately? Do you have multiple policies that conflict with each other or work together to make a bad situation even worse? Please add your thoughts in the comments.