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Are TalkTalk breaking new ground in ineptitude?


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I made a huge mistake earlier this year, and briefly considered moving to TalkTalk from Sky. My complants letter should make things clear:

 

====

 

Customer Relations Department

TalkTalk Group

P.O. Box 360

Southampton

SO30 2NP

 

8th January 2013

 

Cancellation Number: XXXXXXXX

 

Dear Sir / Madam

 

I am writing in regard to the above cancellation to confirm it in writing as I have no confidence whatsoever in the ability of your telephone ‘helpdesk’ staff to follow simple verbal instructions. In a moment of madness we considered switching over to TalkTalk on Friday 4th January and placed an order for the broadband, phone and television product. This was quite straightforward. We then contacted Sky to instruct them that we were changing providers, only for them to come back with a significant price reduction that made us decide to stay with them.

 

Calling TalkTalk to cancel the order - around 20 minutes after placing it - has been an infuriating process. Despite being given a cancellation number of XXXXXXXX, we were bombarded with SMS messages and emails informing us that the engineer would be visiting on two different days for various installations. As you charge a £70 fee for a missed installation we are naturally concerned that these unwanted installs had been booked after the order was cancelled. We were also assigned a phone number of XXXXX XXXXX.

 

Trying to resolve the problem has been a complete nightmare. I have heard of the Infinite Monkey Theorem, in which it is speculated an infinite number of monkeys sitting at typewriters and hitting keys at random will eventually result in one of them producing the complete works of Shakespeare ~ I was however completely unaware that any company operated a helpdesk using the same policy until I encountered your aftersales team.

 

It took three evenings of calls to hopefully cancel everything. One of the stumbling blocks was that unknown to us, the original helpdesk operator had only cancelled the TV package, resulting in an extensive round of being transferred, given over a directory worth of different 0870 numbers to ring, endlessly confirming details only for it all to be repeated to the slack-jawed halfwit that we got transferred to next before we managed to cancel everything else.

 

We did call a fourth evening after we discovered a Direct Debit had been set-up at my bank (which I have since deleted via online banking) after we had been told everything was cancelled. This time we somehow managed to speak to a competent advisor as soon as we were connected, who stated the contract had been cancelled but it would ‘take a few days for the system to catch up with it.’ A few days for a computer system to update? Did someone forget to feed the hamster in the wheel that powers the I.T. department?

 

Given the ineptitude of the previous advisors, would you please confirm in writing that the contract is dead. As I stated previously hopefully everything is cancelled ~ I’m rather reluctant to take their word for it, hence wanting written confirmation.

 

Yours extremely happy we stayed with Sky,

 

Unclebob48

 

PS - Just in case you only read this bit, please cancel the bloody order! And please feed the I.T. hamster.

PPS - I sent this recorded delivery so we’ll know if any money is taken from my bank account afterwards. If it does, the Ombudsman will be all over you like a rash. Well, maybe. And karma will probably bite you on the arse too.

 

====

 

I did get a reply.

 

====

 

Dear Unclebob48

 

Thankyou for your recent letter.

 

I am sorry you had to contact TalkTalk to resolve your complaint.

 

My understanding of your complaint is as follows:

 

You decided to place an order with TalkTalk for TV, Broadband and Calls, however after the order was placed you contacted your current provider to let them know you were leaving and you were offered a very competitive deal which you agreed to accept. However when you contacted TalkTalk to cancel your order the Customer Service agents were not clear as to when the order would be cancelled which resulted with you having to make numerous calls to TalkTalk to ensure the order had indeed been cancelled.

 

I have checked the records on your account and I can confirm your TalkTalk order was cancelled in 10 January 2013.

 

I fully appreciate the points raised in your letter and understand the obvious distress and inconvenience this matter has caused you. However, I would like to take this opportunity do(sic) confirm we care passionately about providing a first class service and it is always distressing to learn we have fallen short in that area. I am sorry that you feel we have failed you in that respect.

 

If you would like to speak to me, my personal number is 0333 001 1938. Please feel free to contact me at any time. If I am not available, my answering service will record your message and I will pick it up as soon as I am next available.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Karen Fraser

Manager, Chief Executives Officer

 

====

 

Fair enough, order should be cancelled, right?

 

Wrong.

 

I got a reminder text yesterday, informing me that the Engineer would be calling in on 07/02/2013 to install the phone and broadband. I ignored it, thinking it must just be an automated message sent in error.

 

Today, the postie dropped off a TalkTalk Wireless Router. Naturally I am now waiting for a returned call from Karen, having already tried to explain the situation to a 'customer advisor' over a line so bad they were probably working from a call centre in Delhi.

 

Sorry for the wall of text, needed to vent.

 

TL;DR - TalkTalk do my head in.

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Hi

 

Class letter. If only I the ba**s to do something similar.

 

Whilst you have had a bad time with them, I think it only fair that good service should be reported.

 

I signed up with TT last October and everything went smoothly even after telling them I was moving (within a week of starting the service) and the transfer went just as well.

The only two niggles I could mention was that they took ages to refund the value line rental (I had to do it again as they couldn't transfer the VLR to my new property) and they forgot to give me the 12 months half price offer in my new home (until I prompted them).

 

I do wish they would set up a UK call centre though. The sales team are UK based so why not the customer support. I had real difficulty understanding the staff abroad.

If you are asked to deal with any matter via private message, PLEASE report it.

Everything I say is opinion only. If you are unsure on any comment made, you should see a qualified solicitor

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Two messages sent now, so much for a direct contact number. I've had a word with Sky and they reckon TalkTalk won't be able to mess-up our phone line as they don't have authorisation to take over the line - if they do apparently it is called 'slamming' which is rather illegal.

 

Here's hoping I don't end up stuck with no phone or broadband if TalkTalk do start faffing about at the exchange.

Edited by Unclebob48
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Under DSR they pay postage.

 

Good to know - the 'help desk' operator tried to send out a pre-paid bag but was apparently unable to do so. Looks like I'll have to poke them with a stick few more times.

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  • 1 year later...

Dear Unclebob48. I am having a saga with Talktalk at the moment re constant dropping of internet connection and phone crackling (been with them for many years) and have just browsed this forum to see other members' experiences. I just wanted to congratulate you on a wonderfully hilarious and full account of your attempts to cancel so quickly after signing up. I must investigate the current chief executive's details so that I can, if necessary, go right to the top. Hope your Sky is proving reliable.

Edited by Supersnipe53
To correct transposed words
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