About this Blog

This blog started as an online diary and place for me to rant about annoyances in my family.

However since July it has become a place for me to catalogue and express my views and opinions on the treatment I have recieved following the diagnosis of a potentially cancerous tumor in my bowel.

On 3rd August 2011 I was told that it was cancerous. In April 2012 I was given the all clear.

October 15th 2013 I was diagnosed with peritoneal disease and liver metastases. The cancer was back and this time it is inoperable.

It is a little bit out of date as the NHS doesn't tend to have a WiFi connection in hospital and I can only post when I get home and posts take a while to write.

It is NOT about individuals or the nursing profession. It is about some of the inadequacies in the system and the way the NHS is failing some people.

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Thursday, 6 February 2014

Customer service is dead

Yesterday I decided to take advantage of Southern Railways plusbus scheme for my journey to Guildford. There were several reasons for this.
1. It sells itself as being cheaper than the bus
2. It alleviates that need for the correct change on the bus
3. It should be nice and simple.

Alas that is not the case.

Despite checking at Three Bridges that the add on was valid on all bus routes in Guildford and being assured that it was, it turns out it isn't. So I get on the bus, show the ticket and am told 'Sorry Love, not valid on these buses'.

I scrabble around for my purse, sort through my change and eventually purchase a return ticket that cost less than the plusbus add on. Then I do what any 21st century blogger does, I tweet about it, in fact over the course of the day I tweeted about it several times. I still haven't received a response. 

So, while eating lunch I decided to resort to email and contacted them that way. This is what I received in reply.

We appreciate you taking the time to contact us. Thank you for your email. Unfortunately it is taking us longer than usual to respond following a much higher volume of contacts than usual. We anticipate responding to your email within 10-14 days based on our current volumes and we are working hard to reduce our backlog. If the matter is urgent please call us on 08451 272920 or tweet @southernrailuk or @gatwickexpress. Please note that if you have sent us a Delay Repay claim, our team will aim to respond within 28 days.

Kind Regards,
Southern Customer Services

How ironic, despite having tweeted them at least 4 times, they do not appear to be able to respond at all. So I'll keep you updated on whether Southern Railway actually train their staff on their products and care about the impact one person tweeting and blogging about them can have.

While I'm on the subject of customer service, I'm having serious thoughts about whether I order anything else from Long Tall Sally. At the beginning of January I ordered a few items that were in the sale to compliment my very small wardrobe of clothes that fit. Everything I ordered was in stock at the time, so I was expecting one lovely parcel to arrive. 

It didn't really work like that, and soon three of the items I ordered had arrived. I was just thinking I would need to chase them for the fourth item when all my hospital dramas of the last two weeks occurred.

Once I got home I contacted them querying the status of the order as it had taken so long to fulfill. I received several contacts from them assuring me that they were trying to source the item, and apologising for the delays. 

I was ever hopeful that I would soon receive the item in question, today I learnt that this is not going to be the case. The item is now no longer in stock. 

I have fired off a very cross email to them containing some emotional blackmail regarding aggressive cancer, very young children looking forward to seeing mummy in a onsie too etc etc. I shall keep you updated on the progress of this too.

I know I seem grabby and demanding, but as a consumer if something is in stock when ordered you do not expect to receive an email a month later informing you it is now out of stock.