Welcome to my nightmare

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Welcome to my nightmare

[ Edited ]

I wanted to order Uverse internet and discontinue my landline service. The following is what transpired:

 

2/5/14

  • I speak with Tony (888-***) who tells me no bundle is available for internet and Direct TV. He recommends fiber optic internet at 12MB at $39.95 and Direct TV billing at a $5.00 month discount. I tell him I will have to get back to him. He says he will call back on Friday at 10:00 AM.

2/7/14

  • Tony does not call back. I call Customer Service at 11:10AM (888-***) and speak with Hannah, who confirms all plan details previously related by Tony. I approve the plan and an account is set up. Hannah tells me equipment will be sent and that I can set everything up myself.  I am told that no tech is needed to be present.
  • I receive an email later that day from AT&T saying there is a problem with the order. I call AT&T (888-***) and speak with supervisor Paul, who tells me he does not know why the order has been cancelled and that he will have to speak with Sales the next day as they are already closed. Paul guarantees that Sales will call me on Saturday to confirm that the order is OK.

2/8/14

  • No one from AT&T Sales calls me as promised.

2/10/14

  • 7:22AM – I call to speak with Paul (888-***) but do not have his correct ID number. When located ***I am told he is not there. I am transferred to supervisor Cathy *** who does not know why the order was cancelled but she will call Sales to find out why when they open at 8:00AM.
  • 8:23AM – I call AT&T (888-***) and customer service rep Mark is rude, unprofessional and refuses to help me. He then puts me on hold and never gets back on the phone.
  • 8:40AM – I call Edward (888-***) and ask for the number to call to cancel service.
  • 8:40AM – I call Olga (877-***) who transfers me to the department to cancel service. I am put on hold and no one comes on the line.
  • 10:15AM - Partner drives to the local AT&T office (818-***) and speaks with Rosie and Nicole, who inform him that the plan we ordered does not exist and that we can get Uverse at 6MB for $44.00. They cannot get AT&T on the phone to set up DirectTV billing so Nicole initiates credit of $60.00 to cover the $5.00 monthly discount.  An appointment is set up for Friday, 2/14 at 9:00AM for a tech to come to the house and set up UVerse. Landline service is scheduled to be disconnected on 2/15. Partner leaves the store at 12:30PM.

 2/13/14

  • I receive a voicemail from AT&T saying our appointment is canceled and they will call to re-schedule.

 2/14/14

  • 3:30PM: Partner and I drive to the local AT&T office (818-***) and speak with Nicole and Naomi. They call AT&T and are told that our appointment was canceled because “customer not available at set time” even though the appointment was scheduled for the next day (and I was home on 2/13/14). Since the next available appointment is not available until 2/18 at 9:00 AM, Nicole asks for landline service not to be canceled but it is too late. Nicole asks us if the equipment was sent to set up Uverse but we tell her it was not.  AT&T tells Nicole to submit a manual order to reinstate landline and DSL service but both cannot be done until Saturday between 8AM to 8PM. Naomi submits the manual order and Nicole confirms with Marvin at AT&T that the order is received and that service will be restored Saturday. Partner suggests making my cell a ‘hot spot’ to get internet on my laptop but I decline as internet will be available on Saturday per Nicole’s guarantee. We leave the store at 5:30PM.

2/15/14

  • Landline service returns in the morning but internet does not. My laptop says “DSL not found.” At 12:30PM Partner calls the AT&T local office (818-790-2147) and speaks with Nicole, who does not know why there is no service. Nicole asks Rosie to call AT&T and set up a 3way call between them, an IT tech and us. Rosie calls me and has an AT&T rep on the 3way call who says that the manual order submitted was to reinstate the landline phone only – not the internet. Rosie says she doesn’t know why this happened and says Nicole will call back in 10 minutes.
  • One hour later Nicole calls back and says she doesn’t know why this happened and does not recommend another manual order be placed to reinstate DSL service but never explains her decision. When asked if it was an error on their end Nicole will not say. She says she has set up a hot spot for my cell, but it does not work and she cannot figure out how to make it work. Partner gets on the phone and walks her through the steps but it still does not work. At 2:20PM Nicole asksPartner to drive to the store to troubleshoot but we have an important appointment at 3:00. Nicole asks Partner to drive back to the store on Sunday and she will give him equipment to make the internet work. Nicole repeatedly tells Partner that no extra charges will appear on our bill for any of this inconvenience.

2/16/14

    • Partner drives to the local store (818-***) at 10:30AM. Nicole gives him a Unite and tells him that this is the hotspot and how to use it. She also tells Partner that the Unite is a “piece of cake” and will work quickly. At 11:00AM Partner brings home the Unite and connects it. The internet does not come on. Partner calls Nicole and she verifies what the device says. This goes on for over an hour, during which time Nicole is looking up how to troubleshoot. We ask for her supervisor’s name and terminate the call.
    • 12:28PM: I call Larissa, Nicole’s supervisor (***), and leave a voicemail message asking her to call me back so I can discuss the problems encountered at the local store.

2/17/14

      • Partner calls AT&T (800-***) at 9:04AM and speaks with Elizabeth about the problems connecting Unite with our computers. Elizabeth looks up the account and tells Partner that the account is not activated. When told that the local store gave Partner the device, Elizabeth says that the store personnel erroneously submitted the paperwork under contract. Elizabeth says that the local store should re-submit the paperwork properly in order to activate the Unite device.
      • Partner calls Nicole at 9:40 AM to relay the conversation. Nicole tells Partner that the paperwork was submitted properly, negating what Elizabeth told Partner. Nicole says she will call AT&T to investigate further.
      • Nicole calls Partner and says internet service will be on in 5 minutes, which does happen.
      • Larissa Martins does not return my call.

2/18/14

        •  Tech shows up to install Uverse.

If AT&T believes that the foregoing experience is acceptable and properly represents efficient employee training, I will be happy to share this on other forums so that existing and future customers can be properly informed on the company's policies.

 

[Edited to comply with Guidelines]

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Re: Welcome to my nightmare

My experiences are somewhat different, but the general level of reliability, helpfulness, product expertise, and follow-up from those I've spoken with is the same.

I have had the phantom cancelled appointments, fixes that aren't fixed, and consistently not returned calls, though.

It is astounding to read accounts like this and realize this is a consistent problem with Uverse service. You have encountered all of these negative experiences across multiple people and multiple interactions just as I have.

The statistical probability that it's "random chance" that two people experience the exact same poor service behaviors with multiple points of contact in different offices on different issues is impossibly low.

This is a cultural, pervasive issue in the Uverse support system. Somewhere there is no accountability for the quality of service being provided, and reps are behaving accordingly.

The Uverse product is actually quite good, once you can eventually get it set up and when it is reliable (my set up was a nightmare and service goes out every other month). Unfortunately the product is not good enough to make up for all of the negatives that come with using it.

I hope someone @ AT&T is actually paying attention to these experiences. When a customer takes the time to share such detail on their experience, it's because they've been uniquely and astonishingly disappointed in how poor their service has been. I'm learning there's more than a few of us in that boat.
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