Tuesday, 24 July 2012

some work in progress

drawn for keshy kesh, and i think possibly the basis of a tshirt, i shall call her louisa vile slugger (and yes everything now has to make sense in derby world. so long real world

Thursday, 19 July 2012

this and that

ready for this to run in the MERD program, also as a consequence took a load of new shots of the helmets which minus a bit of retouching are ready to be posted.

Monday, 2 July 2012

T-Mobile complaint

So here is the saga of my full complaint to T-Mobile
it's long but there we go. Also I've deleted sensitive bits:

The Complaint Investigation Team
6 Camberwell Way
Tyne and Wear

Monday 2nd July 2012

Re: Customer Service Complaints for Telephone No:

Dear Sir or Madam,

I am writing to complain about multiple issues that have occurred over the previous three months at the hands of various departments within T-Mobile, whilst trying to get my HTC Desire S repaired.

My account details are as follows:

Billing Address:
T-Mobile Phone:

Due to the long and complex nature of my issues I feel I must give a short back story to what has happened so my complaints will make sense when detailed further in this letter.

I have been a T-Mobile customer since 2008, and have an HTC Desire S that I received as an upgrade to my account in the latter half of 2011. By January 2012, it had developed a number of faults, so I went into the store closest to my work (110 Oxford Street). They told me that my phone was under warranty and that T-Mobile would, therefore, repair it for free but that this repair would take a couple of weeks.

Due to this, I held off repairing my phone until the hassle of using it outweighed the hassle of two weeks without a phone. I went to the 110 Oxford Street store on the 16th of April to send off my phone for repair. Despite explaining carefully to a member of staff, my phone’s issues were incorrectly entered on the form. I was lent a Nokia phone whilst my phone was in repair but this phone also stopped working and I had to return two days later to exchange it.

My phone was returned to store, and on the morning I went to retrieve it, the store opened twenty minutes late due to the till system “going down” (as I was informed by the manager, when he poked his head round the door and asked me to come back in an hour). When I returned 15 minutes later the store had been opened and I retrieved my phone.

This delay was not a huge inconvenience but did cause me to lose an additional hour of working time. However, things went from bad to worse when I discovered the phone was still faulty but in new ways. I spoke to Customer Service and in-store staff to find out what the procedure was regarding multiple repairs and was given various answers but the consensus was that, after three repairs, a new phone could be given. During one of these calls to Customer Services, I believe I was given 15 pounds off my bill due to the fact I hadn’t been able to use the services I was paying for.

I returned again to the Oxford Street store on the 10th May 2012. The phone was sent off for repair a second time. This time the store had no working stand-in phones (they did, however, offer me the same broken one I had previously received). This left me unable to make or receive any calls. In addition the phone’s issues were again entered incorrectly into the repair form. Using the repair tracker I saw that the phone had been dispatched from the repair centre back to the store. Due to my experience during the previous repair I called the 110 Oxford Street store on Friday 18th of May, a full three days after it had been dispatched. I was told by the store that they still hadn’t received it, and that I should wait until after the weekend to call back.

On Monday 21st May I tried calling the store multiple times over the course of an hour and couldn’t get through. I then called Customer Services to find out whether the branch was closed. I was told that, as far as they knew, it was open and, upon further investigation with the courier, that my phone had been delivered and signed for on the 16th of May. Customer Services were an answer from the store and sent an email to the manager to contact them and advised me they would “get to the bottom of it” and call me back.

On receiving no call, I go back in contact the next day to find that Customer Services were still unable to reach the store or locate my phone. On Wednesday 23rd May, tired of being passed between departments, I walked down to the store to find it open and my phone there. Upon asking the members of staff in the store, I was told the store had been closed due to refurbishment for two days.

A week or so later, my phone was still misbehaving. I called Customer Services multiple times to try and receive a definite answer as to the exchange procedure and the number of repairs I would have to go through before the phone was replaced with a new one. I still got no concrete answer on this point. On Wednesday 6th June I returned to the store again to get my phone sent off for repair. Again, despite careful explanation, the phone’s faults were listed incorrectly. This time, I called Customer Services to get the fault report corrected and ensure proper repair.

I hoped that, as some of the faults were the same as those reported in the first repair, a new replacement phone might be offered. So I was surprised when, during this call, I was informed by Julie (of the Exchange and Repairs team) that I had already received a replacement phone. When I queried this, I was informed that one of the previous ‘repairs’ had, in fact, resulted in the issue of a replacement phone. No-one had informed me of this and, upon investigation, it emerged that this ‘replacement phone’ was not a new phone at all but my old casing with a new interior piece - at the most, a refurbished phone.

When I pressed the issue of a new replacement phone under my warranty with the T-Mobile representative, I was informed that only the manufacturer (HTC) could make that decision. I then requested the number for HTC in the UK and called them. Their staff explained that my warranty was directly with them and had nothing to do with T-Mobile and that they did not view repairs done by T-Mobile’s third-party agent as coming under their warranty. Further to this I would have to send the phone to them directly for any warranty replacement decision to be made by them.

I was, by this time, frustrated and confused and so called Customer Sevices again to find out why I was being told my phone was being repaired under warranty when HTC had told me that T-Mobile were solely a vendor. I was also keen to find out why T-Mobile were repairing my phone when their repairs were not certificated or respected by HTC. On calling back T-Mobile I spoke to Terry of the Exchange and Repairs department, who apologised and informed me that they could get my phone sent back from the repair centre to the store, as soon as it arrived there, but that he couldn’t help on any of the other issues I had.

A minute or so later I was rang back by Chris Groom, a manager of the Exchange and Repairs team, who explained that he had been listening into my call with Terry for training purposes. He apologised for my issues and could not clarify why I had been told the two conflicting statements by HTC and a T-Mobile operative. T-Mobile as far as he knew, were authorised agents who could nominate a repair. He offered me two potential solutions; receive a new replacement phone from the limited stock they had, or bring my contract to a close sooner so that an upgrade could be awarded. Unable to choose, he said he would call back later in the day to find out my choice.

Needless to say this call back did not occur as promised but, after my calling back the next day and hassling, I received a call from Chris later on that day. On this call I explained I wished to take the second option of the early closing and upgrade of my account. Chris explained that a member of staff from upgrades would call to make me an offer and that he himself would call later in the day to check that I was satisfied.

Again, neither of these calls happened. On Friday the 15th of June I called again to try and prompt a call-back, and was promised that someone would be in touch that afternoon. And they were. At 4:30pm, whilst I was in a meeting from a member of the upgrade team called Wayne. I tried calling back immediately and after one call being dropped whilst I was on hold, I managed to speak to an operative called Jenna in the upgrade team at 5:20pm. She told me that she was incapable of transferring the call to Wayne as he worked in the Oxford call centre. However she said she would email him and get him to call back that evening and that she herself would call me back before she left work at 6:30pm, to check this call had happened.

Again, no call-back. I called Customer Services at 7:00pm. After another long wait on hold I was passed to a member of the upgrade team, who offered me an upgrade but, after checking with his manager, returned to the line to tell me that my account had been passed to T-Mobile Head Office and as such he could no longer action anything on my account. He informed me that there was no way for me to contact Head Office and that they would call me on Monday (18th of June) for sure.

On Monday the 18th of June I received no call from head office. I called Customer Service at 5:20pm that evening, and after a short half hour on hold, I spoke to an operative who informed me that I was wrong, and that Head Office only called people following the receipt of a written complaint. I asked to be passed on to the Repairs and Exchange team anyway. After another quarter of an hour on hold, I spoke to a very helpful lady in the Repairs and Exchange team, who apologised profusely for the issues and dropped calls and checked my account. On returning to the line she confirmed that Chris Groom had done nothing to my account, no promised upgrade existed and that the best she could do was offer me a replacement phone from stock in the meantime. This was sent punctually and is greatly appreciated.

A full two weeks have now passed. I have received calls from none of the people or teams that promised me calls back.

That is a condensed version of the long tragic tale of this repair process with T-Mobile.
My complaints are unfortunately numerous so I have detailed these below:

  • I have been misled by members of store staff and customer service representatives as to the nature of my phone warranty with T-Mobile. I was told as far back as January of this year, that my phone was under warranty with T-Mobile, whereas in reality my warranty is with HTC. I would like clarification for myself and other consumers as to what this relationship actually is.

  • On multiple occasions I have been promised calls from members of the Customer service, Upgrades and Repairs and Exchange teams, including managers and T-Mobile Head office, which have never occurred.

  • Time spent on the phone or in store trying to sort out these issues, or get answers that will enable me to solve them myself, has cost me over ten hours worth of work. At my hourly rate of £50/hour that comes to £500. Enough to have purchased any phone in your range; contract and service-provider free.

  • My time spent in discussions with T-Mobile staff has been on the whole, frustrating and at times misleading. I have found that operators contradict each other, and at times it has felt as though this has been deliberate. I have spoken to several helpful members of staff including Christopher Groom, a Manager in the Repairs and Exchange department, However, any progress is almost immediately undone by unhelpful member of staff and non-existent call-backs.

  • When discussing the faults of my phone with the staff at the store at 110, Oxford Street, they routinely have filled in the details of the phones faults incorrectly on the repair forms.
    • For example on the first repair (Repair Reference No: ) the repair form reads “ Symptom Description; Audio problem – Malfunctioning Speaker – The speaker does not work all the time”. I however had explained that the issues I was getting the phone repaired for were a faulty headphone socket, faulty speaker, and software issues.
    • This issue also occurred on the other two repairs (Repair Reference Nos: ). This was especially frustrating as multiple members of staff told me that phones were only replaced if they were repaired three times for the same issue. I had to question this with staff, as I couldn’t believe that contingency for three rounds of failed repair by a T-Mobile contractor would be considered normal and par for the course.

  • The online repair tracker on the T-mobile website (http://support.t-mobile.co.uk/help-and-support/index?page=home&cat=REPAIR_TRACKER) has no functionality to show when a repaired phone is received back into store.  This system only shows when the phone has been dispatched by the repair centre, and not when it has been received and who signed for it. For this information even the T-Mobile Repairs and Exchange department had to call the couriers of the phone directly to receive that information. This page is often faulty and will fail to load the desired data which, as you can understand, fails to provide confidence and often adds to frustration.

This whole experience has left me feeling totally unsatisfied with the service I’ve received from T-Mobile.  I will never recommend T-Mobile to a friend or family member. I like my friends and family and would prefer that they continue to like me. I will also be actively advising anyone who will listen to stay away from T-Mobile based on these experiences. I will be contacting OFCOM and various media outputs to describe my issues. I will be using my own social media to list these experiences so that others will not feel as alone or misled, as I have during this process.

Please feel free to contact me using my phone or via email or in writing, or even in person. I will be copying this letter to the email address for the Customer Services Director as well to my blog.

Yours faithfully

Jon Creighton-Griffiths