15 May 2009

Give me strength!

Last month we extended our broadband contract with BT (very bad idea as it turns out). The confirmation was sent to Rent-a-Ranger (this is the business Niall and Anthea used to run back in the 80s and early 90s). A quick phone call changed it back to CJS.
End of the subject we thought. But oh no...
A week later Niall as Rent-a-Ranger got three confirmation of order letters, with provisional allocation of new phone numbers (ours!) sent here to the CJS office.
In their wisdom BT had changed the accounts for all three main phone lines into Rent-a-Ranger. Bear in mind Rent-a-Ranger never operated from this address, never had even an email address never mind broadband and we sent legal letters to BT changing the CJS details when Niall retired.
We phoned BT and surprisingly got straight through, they were totally confused and had no idea what had happened but promised we'd keep our lines, phone numbers and broadband whilst they investigated. A few days later we got a call from Complaints who were now handling the case, after patiently explaining again they sat in bemused silence. We'll look into it they said and get back to you. Which they duly did "we don't know why it happened, there seems to be a legal entity listing on the accounts" but to put it right "we will recreate the accounts, someone from local sales will contact you". And they did; however, to recreate the accounts we had to sign transfer documents (why didn't we need to do this first time round? Different departments have different protocols apparently). OK all information provided - again - and completed documentation signed in triplicate. In the mean time we got a refund of the outstanding balance on the accounts that had been closed (direct debit claimed two days after the 'transfer' had taken place). Next was receipt of confirmation of the new, new orders back to CJS (are you still with us?) followed by a call from Complaints checking everything was proceeding according to plan - theirs not ours - well if we're back to CJS yes that's OK and so far no break in service. Directory services called to check the listings for the new accounts for inclusion in the phone book.
THEN Niall got bills for Rent-a-Ranger at the CJS address for the installation of the new lines, line rental, calls made and also penalties for early cancellation totalling over £600. We called Complaints and said what's going on here then. "Ah, I had a feeling this might happen, don't worry we'll cancel those and send amended bills for the period between the cancellation and new account creation" What?? Oh for the 28 days of line rental between the refund and new account creation, OK then. Two days later bills arrived for between £6 and £11 pounds to be paid by cheque or card, I guess we have set up direct debits again but this morning the bill for the broadband arrived - it's still on a direct debit and as a new customer they want payment for two quarters up front, but they've refunded the remainder of the previous quarter before they chucked the toolbox in the works. Now if you're refunding a previous payment how can you, on the same piece of paper, claim the business as a new customer? No, we don't know either.
But now according to BT we're a new business, new account, new occupier and guess what? They've told the whole world. So now Yellow Pages, Business Directory, 118 et al all want to confirm our details for inclusion in their services and would we like to take out paid advertising whilst we're at it to catch all the people in our area....
We watch the post with bated breath to see what the next missive will be.