Sorry, but Vodafone still sucks…

I have previously blogged about my frustrations with Vodafone.

Today’s expereince was surreal.

I wanted to find out where I had to go to speak to a business consultant – someone who knows about business rates and could sit down with me and set up mobiles for a new company.

The local Vodafone shop staff kept showing me ordinary consumer plans, but corporate plans are quite different and have some pretty good discounts and ways of setting things up. I needed a human being who knew what they were talking about.

Should be pretty simple really, call up the 0800 number and someone would be able to recommend the nearest shop that could help… well, not really, this is after all, Vodafone.

I got through to someone after going through all the prompts.

“Can you please hold while I find out”

No problem, he’s going online or referring to a directory… a few minutes later, 5 to be exact, I got told they would email or post me a form that I could fill out and send back and they would get someone to contact me.

I was in a bind because I needed to pick up by transferred phone number today otherwise I would lose it, apart from being the most arcahic way of finding out what should be pretty simple information, I didn’t have time.

I explained my situation and asked the guy couldn’t he just suggest somewhere local, but no he couldn’t, he could only send me a form. This struck me as odd, so I asked where he was exactly…. Egypt.

I was floored, Egypt!!!!!!!!!!!!

“Do you know where Auckland is?”

“No sorry”

“Can you give me a number I can call to talk to someone in New Zealand who could tell me?”

“No the only number is the one you called”

“So I can’t talk to anyone in NZ??”

He suggested I try the technical help option on the menu because some of the tech help options were locally based. Four attempts – all roads lead to Egypt with Vodafone – I got to speak to someone locally secreted away deep in the technical support menu. They suggested Queen St as “they generally know what they are talking about”… 

Once I got there and got an appointment with someone and sat down with them they were great.

Vodafone, get your shit together!

It shouldn’t require calling freaking Egypt to find out who I can talk to locally about giving you a whole lot of new business. Why on earth have you made this all so complicated and difficult for the consumer?

Do you think this is a clever or innovative business model?

Do you think I will find it cool or amusing to talk to someone in Egypt, when I require someone with local knowledge, and that by being shunted around fruitlessly around the globe I will feel part of your global network?

That I want to spend 30 minutes of my valuable time just to find out where to go to give you my business?

If it wasn’t for the fact that you are the only network offering Blackberry and iphone, I would have given up with the first call. And you might think those facts will ensure you can continue to jerk your customers around. Think again, part of the reason Telecom has lost so much money is because people hate them, and why to they hate them? Because for years they took everyone of their captive customers for granted. Now the chickens have come home to roost, as they will for you unless you wake up and change the way you service consumers!

    • diptychal
    • August 16th, 2008

    it’s called outsourcing and tons of companies have been doing it for ages in the US. It has nothing to do with vodafone wanting you to feel like a part of their global network. it’s just cheaper

  1. Yeah, I know. I don’t have any problem with outsourcing, in some situations it’s invaluable. However, if I need to talk to someone local about something like finding a business consultant they either need to be able to tell you straight away or be able to transfer to someone who can. It should take 48hrs plus to give you that information. I think some companies outsource functions without considering how it’s going to work and how it will affect the business. It’s all very well having someone answer the phone, but if they can’t help you what’s been achieved?

  2. Agreed. I wouldn’t have a problem with talking with an overseas customer-support service, but they need to be well-informed! A happier story: I had to call up Apple’s tech support for a defective LCD screen, and I got routed to Australia – but at least they gave me all the information I needed, named the closest warranty-honouring outlet in Auckland and generally had a good knowledge of the NZ setup.

    Vodafone has some issues to deal with it seems.

    • phil
    • August 28th, 2008

    Hi. Found you via google. Just in case you are collecting these, here is my feed back from yesterday’s little run-in when I tried to add an extra email id…

    1. The problem should never have been a problem. I tried to add an extra email to my account and couldnt access the pop server, since you had not defined what the userid would be.

    2. When I tried to contact you I was on hold for over half an hour before I gave up.

    3. When I tried to contact you by email the form asked misleading questions then threw away my input. It also told me I was unlikely to receive a timely response.

    4. There was no way to find out from your website what the email id was that I had been creating, “@ihug” or “@vodafone”. When I finally spoke to representative, he told me that I could have chosen one or the other from a drop-down box. This was not true, as I went back and checked.

    5. My overall experience is therefore one of hours of wasted time, people lying to me to get me to go away, and the impression that vodafone is secretly about to withdraw support for ihug, requiring an expensive and time consuming conversion of all my contacts. I shall have to start planning to leave, and I would never recommend you to anyone.

    I can now add a bit more: when I tried to submit this via their feedback request it told me that the survey was not fully completed, even though it was.

    • Me, myself and I
    • September 2nd, 2008

    “it’s called outsourcing” In my understanding I’d call it stupidity. You outsource to reduce costs, or to increase accountability. Not to aggravate customers. In my experience, Vodafone does this thoroughly for a few years now, in the consumer sector as well.

    • kettavan
    • September 7th, 2010

    vodafone realy suck a lot.

    • henry
    • December 11th, 2010

    i hate vodaphone because the money expires in a years time
    and i do not use all of the money.

    • Juliet
    • January 12th, 2011

    Just wasted 75 minutes of my life today talking to Vodafone
    employees in Mumbai India..grrrrr…handy hint- when they offer you
    something you are not happy with- even if they say that is the only
    option you have- say “NO!” – and ask to speak with their
    supervisor- if they won’t help ask to speak with someone who has
    the power to make the decision you want-and keep saying “NO!” until
    they give in- it takes time but you can succeed!

    • Alex
    • January 18th, 2011

    being with vVODAFONE for 4 month i have experienced:

    80$ overcharge.
    No network
    Disconnecting problem
    No customer service

    VODAFONE really sucks

    • Mela
    • January 19th, 2011

    Vodafone customer service sucks! I sent them an enquiry via e-mail, and though it’s been nearly a month since then I still haven’t had a reply! (So much for getting back to me in 5 business days.)

    I ended up calling last week just to get it over with. Talked to a customer representative in India. I asked her if she could change my plan, and she said she did so successfully. But when I checked it this week… it was still reflecting the old plan. Seriously, what the hell!

    I just moved to Australia a few months ago so I didn’t know about Vodafone’s reputation… I think I should switch providers :/

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