iAmSorryButIDidn'tUnderstandYouPhone

This post is not about a certain mobile phone that comes out this week, although I have to admit that I would be very interested in getting one if it was being released in the UK as well.

Track-and-Trace phone system = Lock-and-Load 

I needed to use track and trace for a Western Digital NAS hard drive that I was getting swapped for a standard desktop version (due to it being sslloowweerr than a snail stuck in molasses). I tried using the website but the tracking code wouldn't work either on Royal Mail or ParcelForce websites. This meant I had to call them up and get someone to check it for me.

Unfortunately I found that there was no human at the end but instead one of those lovely automated systems that wanted me to read the tracking code out character by character. I'd had a bad experience trying to use one with UPS before so I wasn't hopeful.

My lack of hope was well founded as this system totally sucked too. It was completely incapable of understanding me, and I was speaking as clearly as possible! I spent about 25 minutes trying to make the system understand me and each time it went something like this:

Phonebot: Please say your tracking code one character at a time by only saying the letter or number required. For example: N S 1 2 3 4 5 and so on. Please say your tracking code now...

Me: C P 3 5 7 8 3 1 5 0 0 0 M A

Phonebot: Thank you, I will now read back the code as I heard it. If it is correct say 'Yes', if it is incorrect please say 'No': E P 3 5 7 8 3 1 5 0 0 0 M A.

Me: No.

Phonebot: Please say your tracking code again one character at a time by only saying the letter or number required. Please say your tracking code now...

Me: C P 3 5 7 8 3 1 5 0 0 0 M A

Phonebot: Thank you, I will now read back the code as I heard it. If it is correct say 'Yes', if it is incorrect please say 'No': C B 3 5 7 8 3 1 5 0 0 0 M A.

Me: No.

Phonebot: Please say your tracking code again one character at a time by only saying the letter or number required. Please say your tracking code now...

Me: C P 3 5 7 8 3 1 5 0 0 0 M A

Phonebot: Thank you, I will now read back the code as I heard it. If it is correct say 'Yes', if it is incorrect please say 'No': E P 3 5 7 8 3 1 5 0 0 0 M A.

Me: No. (...gggrrrrr....)

Phonebot: I'm sorry, we can try that one more time, please say your tracking code again one character at a time by only saying the letter or number required. Please say your tracking code now...

Me: C P 3 5 7 8 3 1 5 0 0 0 M A

Phonebot: Thank you, I will now read back the code as I heard it. If it is correct say 'Yes', if it is incorrect please say 'No': E P 3 5 7 8 3 1 5 0 0 0 M A.

Me: Aaaaaarrrgghhhhhggggrrrrrrr!!!!!!!

Phonebot: I'm sorry, a tracking code is required in order to track the status of a parcel, please make sure you have your tracking code and then call back. Click.

Me: What? It hung up on me? Huh??!!!?!!??!!! 

I then repeated this whole thing about three times over! Eventually I tried another number and got a human being, but only after being faced with yet another automated system which made me try a few times again. But at least that one put me through to a human!

These kind of automated systems are supposed to save time, but all it did was waste 25 minutes of my time which was then dealt with by a human in about 30 seconds. These systems should at least send you to a human if it fails to recognise the code after a few attempts, not just hang up on me!

~Rick


Digital Ocean

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Tags: phones,track and trace,voice activated systems,annoying phone systems,rant

Originally published on 2007-06-26 13:58:31 by Rick Curran

Last edited on 2007-06-26 14:48:14 by Rick Curran

Permalink: http://suburbia.org.uk/blog/2007/06/26/135831.html

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