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the incompetence of BT

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eFestivals moved premises in mid-January. A move of phone services from one premises to another should be an easy task for any competent business to manage.

And yet...

- BT took the order wrongly.

- BT failed to fulfil the order properly.

- BT did the bits they did several days later than they should have.

- The engineer did a dreadful job, requiring the wiring in both my house and the exchange to need to be re-done.

- it was near-impossible to get them to send that diferent engineer, instead I was told I had to take my office offline for several days while they did more pointless tests.

- the tests they do are very pointless; they said my broadband was down when I was speaking to them on ta voice over IP line that uses broadband.

- The billing of all this was a dreadful cock-up.

The above are the extremely brief version of events. Trying to deal with all of the above took 25+ hours of my time.

After being given the run around by the normal numpties on the phones who told me there was no complaints dept, and nowhwere within BT that I could take these issues to, I finally managed to find the following...

0207 356 6243. This is the number for Barbara Malone, who is the secretary to the MD, or Chairman, or someone (I forget).

She directed me to "the chairman's office", which is a higher level complaints team to the normal complaints team (if you can reach even them). The number for "the chairman's office" is 0800 169 6126. The person who (in my experience) normally answers that phone is Jackie Craig.

Jackie palms you off to one of her team. I firstly spoke to someone called Bill (I forget the surname) who was so incompetent that he ended up offering me much more compensation than he should have.

Moving on from that, the compensation issue was handled incompetently too, so that I got paid double the compensation that Bill offered. That might sound like a good result - and it was better than nothing - but I'd rather not have had weeks of my time wasted getting to that point. That double compensation doesn't compensate me for the issues to that point.

Following on from Bill, I ended up having the issues with the billing dealt with by Rona from the "HLE Business Complaints" team. After some to-ing and fro-ing I thought she'd got things sorted at the beginning of March.

Forward to the end of April, and i get my first bill at my new premises, only to find that I've been charged about £200 more than I should have been, because they're still billing me for broadband at my old premises on my old number (despite that number having been diverted to a voice over IP line when I moved), for a phone they sent me which i never ordered, and for a voice over IP line and number that I never ordered.

So i'm back on the phone to them, to get the bills amended. I make it absolutely clear again and again that it's only the billing that is wrong. I get told only the billing will be altered.

And then I get an email to tell me that my broadband is to cease next week, as ordered. I phone up, to be told there's nowhere I can take my complaint about this, because there's no complaints dept.

Even BT's head office switchboard tell me there's no complaints dept that can be dialed directly.

So feel free to use the number above. Bug the hell out of these useless people. I'm surprised they manage to arrive at work each day ... given the constant incompetence they show I'd expect them to go to the wrong offices.

I'm still trying to get things sorted. I could be here for some time.

PS: I've always been a fan of BT, encouraging others to use them instead of alternatives. I've no experience of the alternatives but I can't believe they can manage incompetence in every single part of the process, even within the parts that are meant to sort out the incompetence of others.

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I was thinking I'd perhaps been too harsh on BT here, and had thought about deleting this blog entry. But....

First thing yesterday morning, they managed to cut off my two main business numbers, as well as some of my broadband services. 24 hours later I've got my broadband services restored but am still waiting for something to happen with my phone numbers.

Incompetent c**ts is a massive understatement.

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