Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

Scholar

Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

[ Edited ]

Why is AT&T so functionally incompetent?  AT&T can't seem to fix the root of the problem, only the symtons, taking well over a month to diagnose.  The techs that came out were great people.  They're just hampered by the functionally incompetent AT&T corporate structure.  The CEO & upper management are at fault for implementing a system that causes repairs to take over a month.

 

I know what the problem is, but they insist on jerking me around with tier 1 & tier 2 service techs that can't fix the root of the problem.  My ADSL2 line had been functioning for a good 10 months without issue until a router or switch was replaced at the C.O.  Ever since then, I lose internet for 10-30 minutes at a time.  This suggests the router is at fault, yet they insist on sending out line techs to "fix" the problem.  All they're doing is putting a bandage on the issue, not addressing the main issue of correcting the settings on the switch or router.  The line noise has reduced, and I don't get disconnected as frequently, but this only suggests that the new router or switch is freezing up because of overloaded logs in RAM and is resetting itself periodically, or some 1d10t low level tech is watching zabbix, ganglia, nagios, or some other monitoring software and resetting it, without fixing it.  I saw no service issues until the equipment was replaced.

 

 

Here's my notes of the downtime.  I left off some details to keep the lenth down, but it's a month's worth of details.

 

 

AT&T Outage Monday, July 29,approximately 2:30 pm.  DSL went down.
 Rebooted Modem twice,
   red lights on Service.
   Broadband remaind green
   Power Green
   Wireless Blinking Green
 Called AT&T 1 800 288-2020 - The automated message had me reboot the modem again and wait 10 minutes before calling back.
 Called AT&T again after 10 minutes and was on hold for about 30 minutes. The actual conversation lasted about 8 minutes.  The CSR scheduled service tech to come Tuesday, July 30, between 4-8 pm

Tuesday July 30, approximately 3:300 pm.  Automated call form AT&T with a message indicating the line was up again.  I immediately call AT&T because the line was still down.  This time I see
  No light on Service
  Red Light on Broadband
  Green Light on Power
  Wireless Blinking Green
The CSR doesn't know what was happening. - Maybe their database wasn't updated.  I continued to wait for the tech to arrive between 4-8 pm
At 6:17 pm, I went out briefly, while the rest of the family was home, and saw an AT&T truck down the street at the intersection.
On the way back around 6:25, I stopped and asked the tech if he was coming to my home.  He said he was going to different address and that he was on a break.


I waited until 7:30 and saw no tech yet, so I call AT&T again.
The tech said he reset the port and my line is up until Wednesday, July 31, at approximately 7:10 pm.  Internet comes back at approx.
The tech said he reset the port and my line is up.

Wednesday, July 31, at approximately 7:10 pm, the line goes down.  Internet comes back at approx. 7:20 pm.
Just before 10pm, the service light went red.  I call AT&T.
They appear to be working on the line, but the tech can't do anything since the 4-8 pm service was never cancelled.  I give him the history of the week's down time.  The line continues going up and down during the call.  After the call, the line remains stable until 10:28 pm.  It comes back at 10:33 pm.  For about a week, I continue to lose service around twice a day and the line resets.

 

I called AT&T nearly every day, this first week.  They eventually schedule a tech on the weekend, and discovered a "tip to ground" connection on my line to the C.O. This requires a different line tech to be sent out.  I'm apparently get numerous bad packets, which is what's supposedly causing the problem.  I already explain again that the problem isn't the line, but in the replacement equipment.  I still get the same service interruptions and keep calling to have my line or port reset, to reduce the outage from 10-30 minutes down to 5-10.  The outage frequency also drops from twice a day to once a day.

 

Another week goes by and a new tech comes out to put in a new splitter and the line is cleaner.  It seems to fix the problem, but a few days later I lose connection.  With a cleaner line, there are fewer bad packets, and the problem span drops from a day to 2-3 days.  I think this tech may have disconnected my alarm line when he added the splitter, but I don't notice it until the alarm company calls me during their monthly check.

 
Friday, August 23, 3rd Tech Replace the line to the home seems to be ok.


Tuesday Sep 3, 10:13 pm Internet is down for 16 Minutes.  A 3rd tech had already come out.  AT&T keeps trying to fix the line to the home, but my line was in worse condition and it had worked just fine on the older router/switch.  It's now out to 10 days between outages.  This points to a problem at the router or switch.  It has nothing to do with the line.

 

Cleaning the line only extends the uptime, but if a line experiences any issue, the router accumulates the errors and disconnects.  I can't get any of the functionally incompetent techs to go beyond their script to fix the issue.  I don't care if I get a 10% improvement in line speed, if I get frequent 10-30 minute downtimes.  I use my internet to connect to work.  I can't afford to get disconnected when I'm configuring a server, firewall, or switch.

This last tech wants to run more tests on my line and take the DSL offline for hours to a day to test my connection again.  These tests do not solve a problem.  AT&T needs to have real techs, not script readers.  I've fixed my own tech problems, so I only call AT&T when it's a problem directly with AT&T.  I've diagnosed and recommend fixes to the techs that have come out to fix my DSL lines whenever I've moved.  The techs that install lines frequently messed up and miswire the connections.  This case is similar.  I don't need my line speed to improve by another 1%.  I want it to be up 24/7 as advertised and not cut me off if I happen to be doing something important.

 

AT&T needs to be broken up again.  It does not care about real service.  It only cares about lip service.  No matter how nice and great the CSRs and Technicians are, it can't make up for the fact the company is structurally deficient and I can't get them to fix the known root of the problem.

Message 1 of 39 (14,790 Views)
ACE - Master

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

I'm sorry but I only made it to Wednesday July 31st in your post then decided to reply so I didn't get to finish the whole thing, but I would recommend that you send a Private Message to the AT&TCustomerCare customer service team. They will reply back with a PM (blue envelope in the top right of the page). Their normal business hours are from 7am to 10pm Central Time.  Please allow 48 hours for a responce.

 

Explain your issues or reference your post and they should be able to get you fixed up.

"If you find this post helpful and it solved your issue please mark it as a solution.  This will help other forum members locate it and will also let everyone know that it corrected your problem. If they have the same issue they will know how to solve theirs"

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 2 of 39 (14,605 Views)
Scholar

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

I posted it mainly to vent and to keep a record of my service request in more than just one place.  The main gist of it is that AT&T's support structure is broken.  It's only meant to help in the simplest of matters.  Escalating the issue to next level is difficult.  I would like their procedures fixed so that proper escalation doesn't take more than a week.  It's currently brain dead.

 

Thanks for the link.  I'll contact them there too.


BeeBeeSA wrote:

I'm sorry but I only made it to Wednesday July 31st in your post then decided to reply so I didn't get to finish the whole thing, but I would recommend that you send a Private Message to the AT&TCustomerCare customer service team. They will reply back with a PM (blue envelope in the top right of the page). Their normal business hours are from 7am to 10pm Central Time.  Please allow 48 hours for a responce.

 

Explain your issues or reference your post and they should be able to get you fixed up.


 

Message 3 of 39 (14,597 Views)
Scholar

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

Here's an update on my problem.

 

I received two replies via PM, one mentioning that a manager would handle my issue.  The manager apparently misread my shorter PM version of the events and gave me a very canned answer that seems to imply that the phone tech runs the way I believe it should be run instead of the way it actually is run.  He also wished me a great weekend.  I hope that doesn't mean he's off tomorrow on Friday, because I still need him to respond to me.

 

I call the phone support again because they've messed up my appointments.  The wrong tech shows up.  Luckily, I did reach a US based support person and I was able to get a proper manager after explaining the problem this time.  He could only offer me a refund of a month and forward me to the uverse tech support again.  I tell him I don't want to go through Tier1 hel again or I'm cancelling.  I wait a while and he connected me through to a Tier 3 person and he was able to understand that the problem started with the equipment failure and not my line.  The line was always bad, but I never had service interuptions until the equipment failed and they put in a new switch/router at the C.O.  So he's called in a C.O. tech for tomorrow and i'll just have to see how it goes.

Message 4 of 39 (14,502 Views)
Scholar

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

Now that I've read through the forums some more, it seems that there is an endemic problem with AT&T's service structure that needs to be fixed.  It appears that AT&T doesn't ktow how to properly manage support and doesn't really see the problem or know how to fix their problem.  Their techs know and can't get management to see it.  The problem is in the structure that hampers proper communication and escalation.  These forums and their rententions groups are just bandages on the problem.  Sure it gets solutions for some people, but these are temporary measuers and occur afterwards.  There's far too many postings on customer's recurring problems here.  AT&T really needs to fix its support infrastructure.

 

As I am not a frequent caller to UVerse Tech support, so I did not know how broken their structure had been.  I should have forced an escalation earlier on.


For my problem, they've already marked me as a frequent caller.  That should have been a sign to escalate the problem, yet they continued sending out techs to test the line.  It isn't the line.  Someone with brains should have read through the messages and figured out what was wrong with my circuit and escalate the problem.  I even described it for them numerous time, and in the latter weeks, I specifically ask them to enter my diagnosis in the notes and read it back to me.  Tier 1 support can't think out of the box.  Those that possibly can are still hampered by the overly rigid structure.

 

It seems that they break out of this stupidity with these forums here, but I can't call the forums when my internet is down.  This means they really should fix the call center structure, not just apply a bandage to this major deficiency in support.  I'm sure the call center fixes the vast majority of the problems out there, since many people call for the most simplest of problems, but they can't seem to fix more complex problems.

 

I only ever call for complex problems or problems at AT&T's end, so it's something I rarely do.  I even offered the most probable solution at the very beginning of my ordeal.  I do fully understand that the employees must follow the script, so I follow along to help them, so they can move on to the next level.  Unfortunately, the way AT&T has it set up, it becomes impossible to escalate the problem properly in a logical manner.  They currently insist that we individually call the cell number of the tech that was sent out.  As an outsider, I don't know their process, nor do I understand why AT&T would set it up this way.  The Call Centers should have known my ticket history and redirected me to call my existing Field Tech or updated the existing notes for him to see.

 

The way it should properly work is to have customers always call the 800 number to update tickets.  Customers should not be told to call each and every individual tech that comes to their home.  I shouldn't have to call a tech at midnight to leave a message on their voicemail, to have them attempt to listen to the voicemail and decipher what I've said and attempt to enter it into their company issued touchpad.  They'll waste time rewinding the message, as I have frequently done.  I should be able to call a manned support center that can enter my call details with the updates to the problem to help assist the field tech with his work.  The iPads are fine for looking up data, but not ideal for entering data.  The call center should be the ones to add entries to an existing ticket, not just create new tickets that automatically cancel an existing ticket or lock the previous tech from access.  They should know that I already have a ticket open and they should be allowed to add a note to it to help document the process.  Nobody in the call center should be allowed to close out an existing unresolved tickect to open a new ticket when the customer is reporting on existing problem.  A new ticket should only be opened for a new problem.

 

If they can get the process changed, there will be fewer complaints, at least on the tech support side of AT&T.  Billing, on the other hand is a diffierent process that I haven't had to deal with in a while.  I hope that people having similar problems will also call in and support this change.

 

I should bill AT&T for my solution.  My time is worth far more than just a month off on my bill for my troubles.

Message 5 of 39 (14,483 Views)
Scholar

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

I can see why people are frustrated with Tech suppport, but I know it's not the employees' fault.  I just got an automated call this Sunday morning saying that AT&T has scheduled a tech to come out between 8am and 8pm.  It was quite confusing.  I didn't even know it was scheduled.  Apparently, a few minutes later, a tech shows up at my door. Well, I was quite annoyed with the short notice.  I thought they were fixing somthing at the C.O.  I had to apologize to the tech for being short tempered.  He fixes my alarm connetion and understands that my problem started with the initial downtime, but he can't get into the C.O. because nobody is there on Sunday.

 

Why does AT&T make the field techs work on Sunday to fix a problem that is likely no longer on the line?  And how can they fix the problem at the C.O. if it's not open?  This points to a broken support infrastructure. This is a major problem with AT&T.  The system is incompetent.  They were better organized as just SBC and even better as PacBell.  Once AT&T came into the picture, they adopted a very broken support model.  Just because it works fine for the 90% or 95%, doesn't mean that it isn't broken.

Message 6 of 39 (14,403 Views)
ACE - Professor

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

At this point, you should just be in communication with your contact from Customer Care. Send him another PM and let him know about the continued problems and let him help you reach a resolution.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 7 of 39 (14,377 Views)
Scholar

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

[ Edited ]

I have contacted him already on Thursday and he left for a long weekend.  They also don't work on Sundays.  I think my running log of the way support is going is helpful to the other people that come to this site with similar problems.  I believe I'm on topic in this forum in describing how customer care and support works at AT&T.  Correct me if I'm wrong.

 

If you don't wish to read my continued posts, please go ahead and ignore them.

 

Message 8 of 39 (14,347 Views)
Highlighted
ACE - Master

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

I'm just excited that someone has the solution to all the Customer Service problems.  I anxiously await the outcome.  Smiley Wink

 

 

 

"The suspense is terrible.  I hope it lasts." - Willy Wonka

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 9 of 39 (14,332 Views)
Employee

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

ATT Inc is SBC, that acquired ATT Corp 2005.
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_AT%26T
Employee Contributor*
*I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.
Message 10 of 39 (14,326 Views)
Scholar

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken


my thoughts wrote:
ATT Inc is SBC, that acquired ATT Corp 2005.
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_AT%26T

Well, I guess that makes it better, then?

Message 11 of 39 (14,302 Views)
Scholar

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

[ Edited ]

skeeterintexas wrote:

I'm just excited that someone has the solution to all the Customer Service problems.  I anxiously await the outcome.  Smiley Wink

 

 

 

"The suspense is terrible.  I hope it lasts." - Willy Wonka


I never said all.  Just the problem with calling the 800 number and getting my ticket reset.  Maybe you haven't tried before for something other than a password reset on the web site.  This was my first time calling it for a connection problem and they kept resetting my tickets. (EDIT) And that procedure is seriously broken.

Message 12 of 39 (14,297 Views)
Community Manager

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken

Hello, willchen!

 

I just wanted to let you know that I have sent you a private message. To read it, simply click on the little blue envelope icon in the top right corner of your screen! Let me know if you have any questions!

 

-Mariana

Employee Contributor*
*I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.
Message 13 of 39 (14,297 Views)
Scholar

Re: Wh is the UVerse tech support system so broken


ATTMarianaCM wrote:

Hello, willchen!

 

I just wanted to let you know that I have sent you a private message. To read it, simply click on the little blue envelope icon in the top right corner of your screen! Let me know if you have any questions!

 

-Mariana


Thank you, Mariana.  I will continue to post what happens with the results.  I believe this will actually help a good portion of the customers that solve their problems more quickly and reduce their frustration with AT&T Tech support.  (I've also responded to the PM)

Message 14 of 39 (14,288 Views)
Scholar

Re: Why is the UVerse tech support system so broken?

Well, the tech called me back and left a message today.  I called in and reach a Tier 2 tech to find out information.  It turns out I was not the only one affected by this problem.  Apparently, they swapped out the faulty Card on the DSLAM ( I was mistaken before, as I was told it was a router or switch by the tier 1 guys. - I know they're not knowledgeable and I'm not a DSL/network/phone tech either so what would I know.)   That last outage I had was them replacing the card that day.  Anyways, I expect my line to be stable now.  It's been a month and a half ordeal and the silver lining is that I have a faster tier and VOIP available if I want it.

 

There's still the problem of the Tier 1 Call Center resetting people's tickets and starting new ones.  I plan to continue that fight to fix a fairly major flaw in the way their system works.  If you don't believe that they do this, call U-Verse Tech support.  You should also talk to the field techs and ask them why you must call their personal work phone number instead of the 800 number if you want to escalate the ticket.

Message 15 of 39 (14,238 Views)
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