Verizon Customer Service Experience

I sent the following email to the Verizon executives that The Consumerist has compiled explaining the piss poor customer service I have received from their team. I am absolutely appalled that for a company so large, their customer service is so bad. I really wanted to be 100% happy with my FiOS service. That ended when I tried to get a CableCARD installed. Why they have to install them is beyond me. It’s basically a PCMCIA card, like the ones you used to put into the side of a laptop that didn’t have a modem or a NIC. The only step I would need assistance with is contacting Verizon to have it activated, though they could probably activate it at the Verizon store when I picked it up, leaving me to do nothing more than put it in my Tivo. There’s more after the jump…

In case you need to contact Verizon for your own problems, 7 of the email addresses below bounced back to me as “user unknown” (meaning they no longer work for Verizon). The emails that don’t work anymore are the following:

robert.e.ingalls.jr@verizon.com
doreen.a.toben@verizon.com
bruce.p.beausejour@verizon.com
john.p.hoey@verizon.com
michael.k.hassett@verizon.com
maura.c.breen@verizon.com
william.barr@verizon.com

You should only contact the Verizon executive team if you have a valid issue that you could not get resolved through the normal support channels. I CC’d The Consumerist in my email to bring attention to the poor customer service at Verizon, and you should too.

Subject: CableCARD Installation or Lack Thereof

To: robert.barish@verizon.com, william.barr@verizon.com, bruce.p.beausejour@verizon.com, maura.c.breen@verizon.com, michael.k.hassett@verizon.com, holly.hess@verizon.com, suleiman.hessami@verizonbusiness.com, john.p.hoey@verizon.com, jerry.holland@verizon.com, robert.e.ingalls.jr@verizon.com, virginia.p.ruesterholz@verizon.com, joseph.j.russo@verizon.com, thomas.j.tauke@verizon.com, doreen.a.toben@verizon.com

Cc: tips@consumerist.com

I have been a Verizon FiOS customer since shortly after purchasing my first home in Providence, RI about a year and a half ago for TV, Internet, and landline phone. I have been extremely happy with the service. I recently purchased a Tivo HD to use with the service because I missed my old Tivo that I previously used with my Cox cable service and because I wanted to take advantage of the streaming video that went along with my Netflix account. About two weeks ago, I contacted Verizon FiOS support to have a CableCARD installed in my Tivo. While I felt that having a technician come out to install this device is a little unnecessary, I scheduled an appointment for Thursday, May 6 between 1:00 and 5:00 (order #OMITTED). When scheduling the appointment, I requested that the technician contact me upon leaving his previous appointment or when he arrived at my house because I work exactly one mile from my house and can be home within five minutes. I gave the customer service representative my cell phone number to include in the order. He said this would not be a problem.

On Thursday, May 6, receiving no phone call, I left work at 4:30 as usual expecting the technician to show up in the next half hour. When I checked my voicemail on my home phone, I had a message from Verizon at 1:30 stating that they left a message on my other number, which was not the number I gave the CSR when scheduling the order, that the driver was at my house and no one was answering. I was not happy about this and immediately called Verizon to find out what happened. I was told that the CSR who took the order gave me false information. I was told that the drivers do not all carry cell phones and may not have the ability to call when they’re on their way. I found this a little shocking as every cable TV technician and installer I have ever experienced carried a cell phone as their means to contact dispatch and the main office in case something went wrong. I accepted the answer, and scheduled a new appointment for Tuesday, May 11 between 1:00 and 5:00 (order #OMITTED, that’s today). Because of the problems before and knowing I may not get a call, I took half the day off to come home in order to be here when the technician arrived.

The following day, Friday, May 7, I received a call from Verizon asking me to reschedule the appointment. I found that odd and explained everything to no fewer than 3 CSR’s before being transferred to a manager. Upon answering, the manager had no been informed by the previous CSR what was going and, forcing me to explain the entire situation one last time. The manager explained that the reason I was called to reschedule was because the original order for May 6 had not been completed before the new order for May 11 was created. She went and canceled the order for May 6 and opened up the order for May 11 to be completed as scheduled.

That brings us to today. I left work at 12:30 to allow myself ample time to come home and hook up the Tivo to the cable, getting it ready for the technician. I received a phone call around 1:30 asking me to reschedule my appointment from May 6. My jaw dropped. I could not believe this was happening. I explained everything, once again, to the woman on the phone. Unable to access my account information, she transferred me to the business office, which really means transferring me to the same number I would call if I needed help with my bill or if I needed technical support. The fact that CSR’s are unable to transfer directly to the proper office and explain the situation to the person on the other end is astounding, but that’s beside the point of this email. I spoke with one CSR, Mindy, who was able to see my order and put me on hold to speak with someone at the Fiber Solutions office. She accidentally disconnected my call, which I discovered after waiting for about 10 minutes. Reluctantly, I called the same number and spoke with another CSR who contacted Providence dispatch to check on the status of my order. She came back with the bad news that they did not have my order because of the issue that happened with the order from May 6. I immediately requested to speak with a manager, and I got the impression that she was expecting that. As her manager was busy, she explained to me that I would be offered one month of free service and they would reschedule my appointment. I explained that while I will more than happily take the free month, I would prefer to have an appointment scheduled around my schedule. I explained that I work in customer service managing IT support. While we don’t give people set times when we will be out there, if we make a mistake this bad, we most definitely do make an appointment around their schedule. She then said something that completely blew my mind and made me feel as though I was in the Twilight Zone. She suggested that the driver could call me when he was on his way to my house. I explained how the other CSR’s claimed that this was not possible. I explained how I was promised this from the beginning. She did not have anything more to say than to inform me that the previous CSR’s all made mistakes when taking my order and had been giving me false information.

I sit here now waiting for the manager to call me. I have wasted half a day when I should be at work because I was under the assumption that someone would be coming to my house to install a CableCARD. That isn’t happening today. I am at my wit’s end with something that should have been a 10 minute job completed last Thursday. If Verizon doesn’t fix the problem today, I will be re-evaluating my switch from Cox Communications to Verizon FiOS for all of the services. None of this should have happened. If I ever let something like this happen in my job, I would be out of a job. While I would never suggest that people lose their jobs, something needs to change. This is completely unacceptable as I have been simply going in circles with the Customer Service department at Verizon. I absolutely love my FiOS TV and Internet, but dealing with Verizon Customer Service has been an absolute nightmare. Not once did I receive such horrible support when I was a customer with Cox Communications.

Please note that I have CC’d The Consumerist on this message.

3 thoughts on “Verizon Customer Service Experience”

  1. That’s just downright awful. I thought my experience to get a DirectTV technician to my place to switch a cable amplifier was bad (I could have picked one up from Wal*mart for half the price and did it myself), but this is unacceptable.

    Likewise, if I did anything like this at my job, I would no longer have one.

  2. You customer service is the worst i have ever encountered…When you have to be placed on hold for 68 minutes to reach a rep only to be told they do not have the authorization for the concern. You ask to speak to a supervisor and have to wait a total of 6 hours to get through, I think thhere is definately a problem…Your reps a rude, obnoxious, condiscending, etc…I ordered your internet protection back in 2008 and was told atthat time all was taken care of, but I never received the e-mail or was told to watch for an e-mail to activate this program. When asked for the original e-mail dated 2008, I was told you cannot do that for privacy issues…What privacy issue…It is my account…You are not worht the sweat off my forehead…Now we are suing you for over $400 in fees that I paid for, but never received the security I thought I had…
    Verizon is the worst when it comes to customer service…

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