Posted by: Wolfe on Nov 04, 2011
I've been sitting here trying to come up with a clever headline for my post, but in the end the truth is all I could come up with.
In this modern digital age where Customer Service champions are found around every corner and at the forefront of every company, I cannot believe how pathetic MTN is. They are making me think the "Customer Service" is the new marketing buzz-word, something that promotes great promise....but empty promise.
If you read my last post about MTN refusing to give back My Phone...my property.....then you will know how frustrated I was...the saga continues....
I emailed MTN to email@example.com asking where I can send my complaint. I received a response in about 3 days saying that I can mail the same address. I sent my complaint as they instructed and more than a week later and I still have no response. I have emailed the NCA (National Consumer Act - firstname.lastname@example.org) three times and in a month I have not had one response from them.
In light of the above, I decided to upgrade my one MTN contract to get a new phone as I need a second BlackBerry. It's been due for an upgrade since June 2011. I contacted MTN on Tuesday and submitted an SMS request to confirm I am due for an upgrade, just to be sure. The reply came in seconds saying I qualify.
I then phoned MTN for the details of the nearest store. I contacted them to enquire if they have the BlackBerry Torch 9810 and they confirmed they have one in stock. I asked them what I needed and they advised me I had to take my ID with. So...off I went with my ID and also proof of address, just in case.
After standing there for about 30 minutes, the lady advised me that they do not have the phone and I need to go to the store opposite the centre as I am at the wrong store. No problem. I go through and confirm I am at the right place. The lady behind the counter apologise to me as their systems were down and they had to do everything manually. No problem....
She contacts their support centre to do a manual upgrade as the system is down and after verifying my details the consultant says to her I cannot upgrade as I first need to pay my outstanding balance of R745. I told her that I paid it via EFT earlier that morning and took out my phone to show her proof of payment. Not good enough. She said she cannot assist me until the funds are cleared and she will phone me once it is cleared to come through again.
After having wasted an hour I walk out furious as this is something they could have told me before I went through. Especially considering the fact that some guy phoned me from MTN about 2 hours after I sent my upgrade SMS to ask if he can upgrade me over the phone. I told him I am going into the branch as I then get to have the phone immediately.
So yesterday afternoon the lady phones to say that the money has not been cleared yet, but if I can send her proof of payment she can fax it through and sort it out. I send her proof of payment and tell her I always pay more than required. I paid R750 and the balance is only due by the 9th.
I heard nothing back.
After 11 years, this is how I am treated as a customer. I make my payments and always pay more than required. Yet, now I am treated like an unknown....this is pathetic!!!!! Wouldn't you agree?
So you may ask why I don't go to another provider. Well, there are two reasons:
- Is another provider going to be better?
- I cannot get a new contract I am self-employed and having just started my own business a month ago, I will prove to be too much a risk.
The NCA held great promise for consumers, but they are just as useless. What's the point of having a commission that doesn't even bother to get back to you. Don't give me the nonsence that they may be busy. If you are too busy to answer email in a 24 hour turn-around time then you shouldn't advertise an email address, trust me...email support is something I specialised in, so I know what I am talking about. There is no excuse for not answering queries, it just boils down to pathetic service and reflects that a company is not interested in their customers.
MTN can spend a great amount of money on marketing, just take a look around on MyDL with all their banners, yet they invest nothing in customer service?
Who can help? Who can you turn to when the NCA and MTN ignores you? Sifiso Dabengwa has been appointed as the new CEO since April 2011, but it will be another short-lived dull appointment unless he can truly champion customer service. Instead, I fear he will invest his time and their money in acquisitions, instead of retention.