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Crazy work situation...

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Lizz1155, Dec 25, 2014.


  1. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    Any opinions/constructive advice welcome for the following work situation (sorry, it's complex):

    A customer (let's call them Mr A) placed an order with our company during the first week of december. The order was very expensive and contained lots of xmas gifts, and was supposed to be sent to Mr A's home address.

    Due to human error, the order was delivered to Mrs B - it had Mr B's name and address on the parcel. (Even though Mr A had paid for it). Mr A and Mrs B live within the same village.

    When the error is discovered, the company contacts Mrs B asking whether they would be willing to redeliver the parcel to the intended recipient. She advises, "sod off, I'm keeping it". (At this point, Mrs B is unaware that Mr A is the intended recipient). When Mrs B becomes aware who the intended recipient is, she concedes, however it still looks bad that she retained this parcel for a couple of weeks without telling them.

    Given that the order was for xmas gifts, it's too late to send out the entire order again to Mr A (and some of the items are now out of stock anyway). And it's also too late to arrange for a courier to pick up the box and take it to the correct person.

    The only way for Mr A to get the order in time for xmas is to tell them who received the order. (Which is not against data protection, since they're already supposed to have this info via order tracking info.) Problem is, doing this may result in Mr A going over and assaulting Mrs B.

    What do you do? (And who would be liable, if Mrs B were assaulted?)
     
    #1 Lizz1155, Dec 25, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2014
  2. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    Does Mr A know that Mrs B kept it and wasn't willing to forward it?
     
  3. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    Mr A is aware that Mrs B received it. Mr A was not informed that Mrs B was unwilling to forward it, but he eventually made that assumption by himself.
     
  4. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    Crikey, awkward situation!

    Has Mrs B still not forwarded the parcel then?
     
  5. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    Worse - Mr A went over and assaulted Mrs B. I have no idea what we should have done as a company to prevent this, or whether we're liable. Mr A has his parcel now though.

    Customers turn crazy over xmas :/
     
    #5 Lizz1155, Dec 25, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2014
  6. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    My thoughts would be that you aren't liable if you didn't break any laws. Accidents happen with regards to the mislabelling, it was her choice of actions that caused the problem. It sounds like you did all you could to resolve the issue.
     
  7. smokeybear

    smokeybear PetForums VIP

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    I find it very curious that an order can be both addressed and delivered to a name and address that was not provided at the time of the order.

    I could understand a different address eg 31 instead of 33 but a different NAME?
     
  8. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    Yes, that is a complete error on our part. Usually if a customer calls to place an order, the customer almost never quotes their customer ID number (which is the easiest way to find them on our database). Instead, we ask their name and postcode, type in the postcode and look for their name. So up comes a list of all customers at that postcode, and we look down the list for the customer who's currently on the phone.

    At that point, it is very easy to place an order on the wrong customer's account, since there could be many customers living along one particular postcode. Obviously it shouldn't happen, but it's a ridiculously easy mistake to make, particularly if the customer service assistant isn't paying much attention.

    (Luckily for me, it wasn't me who placed this order in the first instance. Since it's a massive error to make.)
     
  9. Colliebarmy

    Colliebarmy PetForums VIP

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    Refund Mrs A in full (inc postage)

    Any assault is a police matter


    BTW, your company sucks (assuming it was addressed to Mrs B)
     
  10. cinnamontoast

    cinnamontoast Sois pas chiant, chéri.

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    Which doesn't come close to explaining how the person on the phone ordering then had his parcel sent to an entirely different house/name, even if they're both customers.
     
  11. nightkitten

    nightkitten PetForums VIP

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    What the company should have done in the first place is to send the entire order out again to Mr A when they found out that the parcel was delivered to the wrong person.

    This would have resolved the issue for Mr A.

    Then the company would have had to try and get the parcel back from Mrs B.

    As a company you can not expect customers to sort out your errors!
     
  12. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    I agree that would have been absolutely ideal. However a resend would not have arrived with Mr A prior to xmas, and many of the items ordered would now be out of stock (which is all a bit shite considering the order was xmas gifts).
     
    #12 Lizz1155, Dec 25, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2014
  13. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    Obviously I haven't explained it very well, and a lot of it is to do with how the Customer Relationship Management computer software is designed. But is there a particular part that's bamboozling you?
     
  14. westie~ma

    westie~ma ~ In my shed ~
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    If I knew in my heart it wasn't mine I'd have taken it around to the correct address.
     
  15. Dogless

    Dogless PetForums VIP

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    Especially knowing that it was most likely for Christmas Day.
     
  16. smokeybear

    smokeybear PetForums VIP

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    Probably the same that is bamboozling me.

    I, like many others on this site, deal with on line and telephone ordering almost daily, both domestically and at work.

    It is customary, even if you have a customer ID, to check name, postcode and first line of the address.

    Hence why many of us cannot understand how such an error occurred.

    I find it totally bizarre.
     
  17. westie~ma

    westie~ma ~ In my shed ~
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    Too right.

    I had a beautiful flower bouquet delivered to me, "Mrs Thomas?" "Sadly, no"
    Gosh they were gorgeous but they weren't mine to take.
     
  18. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    Yes, you are completely correct that when taking phonecalls (inquiries or orders) from customers, the operator is supposed to confirm three points of data protection. Which is customer's name (counts as one point), first line of address and postcode (counts as one), and either customer number, telephone number or email address.

    The problem lies in that people who are new to the top (in particular, temporary staff hired for xmas) sometimes don't do this. It is covered very thoroughly in training, however they may forget their training/get lazy about it/ just not care. That's how these kind of errors occur. :(
     
  19. Linden_Tree

    Linden_Tree PetForums Member

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    Mr A should have been refunded immediately the error was noticed, and it was obvious that the items couldn't be resent in time.

    Mrs B is under no legal obligation to either return or forward the items on. Company mistake, company loss.

    Mr A should NOT have been told his items were sent to an address in the same village, and morally, i believe your company should be offering compensation to Mrs B, regardless of her attitude.

    Legally though, that's for the police to sort out.
     
  20. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    To be fair, in the minority of instances where an order is delivered to the wrong address*, 99% of the time the recipient will arrange for the order to be delivered to the correct place (either by taking it around themselves, or by calling us and arranging a courier to redeliver). In cases where we're aware of this happening, the recipient always gets gift-vouchered as a goodwill gesture.

    My colleagues (who have worked for the company a lot longer than I have) have never encountered a situation where a parcel was delivered to the wrong person, and they refused to give it to the correct person, until this one .

    *Usually it's a case of "right address on parcel, but courier leaving it at the wrong house". Very rarely is it "wrong name and address on parcel".
     
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