Sunday, October 24, 2010

Connecting to the outside world

We'd planned to have Bell Canada come and set up our phone on Friday morning and for Rogers to come and set up our internet and television Friday afternoon. We waited and waited and waited all morning for Bell to come and when they hadn't shown up by noon, which was the end of the appointment window I was given, I called to find out what was going on.

It turned out that Bell had no record of my call two weeks ago to move the service and they had no record of our new address or that we were moving. There was nothing in their system about a technician coming to our house. I didn't have a physical copy of the confirmation number the person had given me - I was calling on Ian's cell phone and couldn't access it while talking, and if I'd printed it I don't know where it was - but I do know that I was given a confirmation number because I put it into the big email with all the confirmation numbers.

Anyways. The previous owners hadn't had Bell since August, 2007, which is why a technician had to come to the house (which I hadn't been told in the initial phone call). And they couldn't get one to us until Tuesday.

At that point I spoke to a supervisor. I twice explained to him why I didn't have my confirmation number. He said that there was nothing they could do and they could send a technician out on Tuesday.

Oh and by the way, our new phone number will be....

New phone number?!?!!! I flipped. I was mad that they'd lost any record of my call and that I was previously told that I could keep my phone number. He said that they couldn't do that because we'd moved to another city (nevermind that the cities are part of the same region and that you can cross a street to go from one to the other). They apparently could let me keep our old phone number but it would take at least a week. If they put a rush on it. And there's no way to get our service going earlier because everything is booked.

I asked for his phone number so that I could get the confirmation number for him and I'd call him back with the confirmation number and he said, "what do I need that for?" Ummm, because Bell f*cked up our order which clearly indicates that something went wrong with their process and maybe Bell could look into that and fix it????? I got even angrier.

I guess I should have taken this up to the next supervisory level but I didn't think to do that and the guy didn't offer to do that. I was so angry at Bell for screwing things up, not apologizing, and not even trying to do anything to really make it right. They didn't offer me anything to compensate for this problem which was caused entirely by them.

Fortunately, the guy from Rogers showed up just as this guy was giving me his phone number. The Rogers guy said that he could hook up a home phone for us - although it won't actually happen until Monday - and we talked to Rogers right then and there and got it set up. We will have a new phone number, which is very inconvenient, but at least Rogers is doing what they can. I'll cancel our phone service with Bell when we get the new phone hooked up.

I felt so frustrated and powerless while talking to the brick walls that were the Bell people. They just didn't seem to want to try and fix things or help make things right. And then when the supervisor said that there wasn't a point to getting the confirmation number I'd received, I felt like Bell really wasn't out there to help me, the customer. I felt like it didn't matter that something had gone so wrong. And the fact that I wasn't told certain things in my initial call, like that I couldn't easily keep my existing number, bothers me very much.

There is a third-party ombudsman/complaint service to which Bell subscribes, and since I can't find a complaint ombudsman on Bell, I'm thinking of filing a complaint there. I was also thinking of writing a letter to Bell about this experience but I'm not sure to whom I should send that letter.

At least everything is going smoothly with Rogers so far. The internet works, the cable works, and I have faith that the phone will work. We don't yet know what our new phone number will be but at least we'll have a phone. And we'll be done with Bell.


Kimberly said...

I'm very sorry about your Bell experience. After a 10 year string of those, I left Bell permanently. We've spent the last 2 years trying to get them to stop telemarketing to us. We always ask for a supervisor, and a month later, they call again. Please confirm that you have 911 service with Rogers. They are getting out of regular land line service (I was just informed that in a month Primus will be my provider), and most VOIP phones can't use 911 service.

Chantelle said...

Thanks for the tip about 911 service.

At this point, I barely care whether we get put off to Primus or Cogeco or whoever, as long as we don't have to deal with Bell.

Canada's telemarketing laws allow any company you've purchased from to contact you for 18 months. After that, they're not supposed to contact you.

When I call Bell to cancel my current service, they're supposed to waive the required 30-day notice. That's the best this supervisor could give me, and I had to work to get that.

sloth003 said...

Bell >>> argh... bell < shakes fists> we are in a bit of a battle with them too right now. i truly wonder HOW they have ANY customers left? i have yet to speak to one person who has had an issue that was adequately handled.