Verizon — Winner of the Clusterf*ck of the Year Award

Posted: 12/16/2011 in Humor, Workplace Behavior
Tags: , , , , , , ,


How Many Verizon Employees Does it Take to Connect
a Wire?

Congratulations, Verizon. I know you’re honored to receive this award. In case you don’t know how you happened to be chosen, allow me to tell you my story.

I finally made it into the millennium and got a smartphone, which is infinitely smarter than your customer service people seem to be. I canceled my landline service, with corresponding re-routing of the internet service on my laptop to “dry loop” (does that mean the wires on a phone connected to the internet are “wet loop?” Sounds kinda risky to me). This re-routing process, as the customer service rep who took the information (and at least five subsequent tech support reps) informed me, is supposed to happen automatically with no interruption in internet service. Which it did, if “no interruption” can be defined as “bit the dust for eight days with thirteen (literally; I counted) hour-long phone calls to Verizon in vain attempts to fix the problem, with the complete impossibility of speaking with the same person twice.”

Every day on the phone (often after more than twenty minutes to even find my account in the system), it was like the calls before never happened, and I had to start from scratch every time, like in “Groundhog Day.” “Put on your booties, ‘cuz it’s cold outside —it’s Verizon Clusterf*ck Day!”

The highlight was the day when, after ten calls and twenty minutes of waiting for the twit on the other end of the phone to find me in the system, he finally came back on the line and said, “So what’s the problem again?”

“Okay,” I said. “I think I need to hang up now, because I’m going to lose it.” I put the phone down and hollered into the sink.

When I finally spoke with a supervisor who at last seemed to figure out what the problem was (my internet service was apparently still connected with the landline phone number that no longer existed, and a missing wire also seemed to be involved), he promised that my service would be back up the next day. It wasn’t. Since he actually told me his last name and location, I tried to contact him to see what happened, figuring I might have better luck with someone who at least seemed to have decent critical thinking skills and already knew my situation.

Alas, my efforts to locate this person were in vain. The office he was in, in Andover, Massachusetts, I naively thought would be easy enough to find via Google or Smartpages. But as I soon discovered, Verizon, any actual offices of yours seem to be in an alternate dimension on the time-space continuum, like the island on “Lost.” I know it must be there, but I can’t ever get to it. Perhaps it’s stuck in 1974 before the internet existed.

The 12th call finally yielded an allegedly scheduled visit from tech support the next day, in one of those 4-hour blocks (this is done so that the tech people can catch up on daytime TV in between appointments, without having to stick to an actual schedule). Yes, I said “allegedly scheduled visit.” This is because they didn’t show up. And when I called around 11:15 (call number 13), I found out that, after the 45-minute call the night before, the person I talked to figured out that something needed to be connected in the office (a few brain circuits, perhaps?), so they didn’t need to come out. Of course, no one called to tell me that.

Finally, the supervisor I talked with checked into the Grand Clusterf*ck and, miracle of miracles, got my service back on (thank you, Karen — you were a beacon of light in the depths of the abyss).

Thank you, Verizon, for giving me a few more gray hairs in my eyebrows to pluck. Keep up the good work. If you play your cards right, you’ll torture enough customers to put the company out of business. One can only hope …

  1. GAY says:

    bravo! this is great writing and super funny, sarcastic!

  2. keltrustsnoone says:

    lauriesjobsearchtidbits~ I nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award! Come to my blog and see what you need to do for it.

    • Thanks – I appreciate it! The other rules will take a bit more time than I have right now (3 – 5 would be more realistic numbers), so if you must un-nominate me, I understand. Great idea, though!

      Great photos – very powerful and vivid. Best of luck with your work – you’re a very talented photographer! Folks, check it out:

  3. Mike says:

    Hi, Nice blog. 1st off I have to say there IS an office in Andover Massachussetts [I used to work for the company] but you have to get the actual phone number to the person you spoke with otherwise by calling the 800 number your call can be routed ‘anywhere’ within Verizon repair or installation departments which means almost any state within the Verizon footprint.

    2nd….to your comment about a ‘dry’ line [dry loop] or ‘wet’ loop. This comes from the old phone lingo of many years past. A ‘dry’ line refers to one which has no ‘talk battery’ or -48 to -52 volts DC. These are commonly used for old dedicated burglar alarms which did not use an auto dialer or data lines including DSL only without dial tone. A ‘wet’ loop indicated
    a dial tone line which has a -48 to -52 VDC talk battery.

    Hope this cleard thing up a bit.

    • Hi Mike – thanks for the info. So you used to work for Verizon – you have my sympathies. My point was that, even though I know there IS an office in Andover, no one can reach it directly or be transferred to it, and it can’t be found in a search. Even the supervisors are reluctant to give a customer their direct number – Karen-Whomever-She-May-Be (the one who finally got my service up) actually did, but she was the only one out of about 20.

      Interesting about the dry and wet loop – I assume you know I didn’t actually think the wire was immersed in water. Even Verizon wouldn’t be that stupid. Of course, one should never assume….

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