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Extremely poor repair experience

Highlighted
4: Newbie

As you don't appear to have any method of registering a complaint on this site, other than telling me to call customer services, I'm posting this on here so that everyone can read it. Firstly here's the background:

Tuesday 30th September
I took my son's Nokia Lumia 520 (which is on my account) into the VF store local to where I work because the power and volume buttons had stopped working and requested a repair under warranty.
The adviser in the store removed the back cover, battery and sim card and gave them to me to hold onto, while it was away for repair. He then filled in the repair form and said he'd send it away for repair and be in touch when it was ready.
At no point in this process did he inform me that I should have removed the sd card before giving it to them or make any attempt to remove it himself, so this was sent to your repair centre in the phone.

Friday 3rd October
We were notified via text message that the phone was ready for collection

Tuesday 7th October
I went into the VF store to collect the phone. The adviser, briefly showed me the phone and confirmed that it was a Nokia and then put it into a box for me which I took away. I was given no other additional information by this adviser other than that "the problem was fixed" and "they'd upgraded the firmware"
When I got home that evening, I unpacked the phone and gave it to my son, who noticed it was a different model because the camera was different. This was confirmed when we tried to put the original back cover on.

Wednesday 8th October
Thinking that I'd been given someone else's phone I went back to the VF store to find out why I'd been given this phone. I then spent a considerable amount of time while the adviser shuttled between me and "the manager out the back" asking me various questions that this manager had asked. Eventually they decided that the reason was that the repair centre didn't have any spare 520's so thay had "upgraded" me to a 620.
Would it not have been good customer service to have told me this when I collected the phone? Also, I was now stuck with a useless replacement phone because the repair centre hadn't had the common sense to enclose a battery or a back cover to fit it. As I said previously the 520 items I had been left with didn't fit.
The adviser then decided he would order the replacement parts for me. As he had no idea what the store's post code was(!), he said he'd get them sent to my home instead. He said this would be no problems because the cover and battery were in stock, and that they would be with me in a couple of days.

Saturday 11th October
The back cover arrived in the post but no sign of the battery

Monday 13th October
I received a text from VF saying "We're sorry to say that the accessory you ordered is out of stock at the moment. We'll send you a text as soon as it's available."

Tuesday 14th October
I received the same "out of stock" automated text

Wednesday 15th October
As I'd been assured that the items were in stock and the texts gave no indication of when the battery would be back in stock, I went back into the VF store to question this.
In addition, my son had noticed over the weekend that the replacement phone didn't have a memory card in it, so I also wanted to be given a replacement for this, as I realised that the adviser hadn't removed it from the phone I brought in for repair.
Yet again my conversation was punctuated by the adviser having to keep going out the back to talk to his manager. The upshot of all this was that VF can't do anything about either issue.
The options I was given for the replacement battery were to wait until it's in stock (can't tell you when though) or buy one myself from Ebay or Amazon and bring the receipt in to get the amount taken off my bill. To be honest, having looked on these sites, I'm not convinced I would obtain a genuine Nokia battery from there, and don't want to risk it. I'm also left with absolutely no confidence that if I turned back up at the VF store with my battery receipt, that I'd have any success getting my money refunded.
The issue with the memory card was "not their problem" and they "could do nothing about it" unless I produced a receipt for the memory card. As the memory card came with the phone I don't have a receipt. I tried to explain to the adviser that as it was actually the store's fault that I didn't have the memory card they should replace it but he wouldn't accept this (After going out the back to the manager again!) and distinctly implied that I was trying it on. So I'm left out of pocket, having to replace a memory card that was lost due to either the store's or the repair centre's incompetence.
At this point, I realised this was going to go nowhere, so I asked how I escalate the issue and was told to "ring customer services, but they'll just tell you the same". I asked for the adviser's and the manager's name which was met with a big sigh and another trip out the back to get the manager's surname. Strangely when he returned, the bit of paper just had first names on it though!

I've not given the location of the store or the names of the advisers or manager but can supply them if requested.

My questions to VF:
Why was I not informed that I'd been "upgraded" when I picked up the phone?
Why did VF think that a different model without a battery and back cover is acceptable to give as a replacement phone to a customer?
Why do I have to pay for a new memory card  when it is VF's fault that it's missing?
Do VF store managers ever leave "out the back" and come onto the shop floor? It is very frustrating to have to deal with someone who has to keep relaying messages between me and the manager
Related to this, are there actually managers in the stores or does the adviser just go out the back to ring someone? It seems very suspicious that they can't come out and personally deal with problem cases instead of the message passing that seems to go on.

Most importantly, when are you going to send me the replacement battery, so that my son can use this "upgraded" phone?

My question to the forum
Can someone confirm that the Nokia 620 is actually an upgrade on the Nokia 520. The Nokia site doesn't display the models in an easy to compare way

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22 REPLIES 22
Highlighted
4: Newbie

Here's a story for you VF

Dave takes his 11 reg estate car into a garage because he's having trouble starting it

Dave: Hi can you take a look at my car
Garage Reception: Sure. It's company policy that we remove the car battery and back seats and leave them with you in case they get damaged
Dave: Oh ok then

The next day, Dave returns to collect his car


Dave: I've come to collect my car
Garage Reception: Here's the keys, it's outside, you'll need to fit the battery and back seats yourself

Dave goes out of the garage and can't find his car and returns to the reception desk.


Dave: Where's my car?
Garage Reception: I'll go and ask the manager

10 minutes later


Garage Reception: We couldn't repair it, so we've given you a 12 reg saloon car instead
Dave: Oh ok then

Dave goes out to find his new car. It has no battery or back seats and when he tries to fit the ones he's got they're both too big, so he returns to the reception desk.

Dave: The battery and back seats don't fit
Garage Reception: I'll order new ones for you that fit. They'll come to your house because I don't know the address of the garage where I work or how to find it out.

One week later, and although the back seats have arrived (In a completely different colour), Dave hasn't received the battery, so he returns to the garage

Dave: I still haven't got the battery
Garage Reception: It's out of stock and I've got no idea when it'll be back in. Tell you what, you just order it somewhere else and I promise I'll give you the money for it.
Dave: Oh ok then. By the way I had a load of CD's in my old car, and I've noticed they aren't in the new one. Can I have them please?
Garage Reception: You should have taken them out when you brought the car in.
Dave: I didn't know I had to, and I definintely didn't know you were going to give me a completely different car. Why didn't you tell me at the time?
Garage Reception: Not my problem mate.
Dave: Well I'd like you to replace them, because I'm not paying for something you lost
Garage Reception: I'll replace them if you bring in receipts for them all.
Dave: I don't have the receipts. Anyway you lost them so you should replace them.
Garage Reception: I don't believe there were any CD's in there so no I won't
Dave: Oh ok then

Tell me VF is this the sort of experience you'd expect from a garage? If not, why is it acceptable in your store?

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Highlighted
17: Community Champion

Yes, it would have made sense, wouldn't it?  I can understand the spare parts being out of stock as they'd be something Vodafone don't normally carry.  What you need is a complete exchange phone (let's not even think about the possibility that the back cover and battery were removed from one that was complete before being sent out!).

 

The forum team here should be able to help you.   It seems to me that what you need is a complete exchange, but I don't work for Vodafone, so can't make any promises about what they'll do.  The team aim to respond to all posts with 48 hours and will get to you.

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Highlighted
4: Newbie

Thanks for the reply hrym.

Under normal circumstances, I would understand the battery being out of stock, however the catalogue of errors and incompetence I've experienced throughout this, has made me less than understanding!

Also, why did the sales adviser tell me that the battery was in stock when he ordered it? I find it very difficult to believe that a company as large as Vodafone doesn't have a proper stock control system, so that accurate stock levels are displayed on the order site and adjusted when one is sold.

I don't think I've ever ordered anything elsewhere online, where at point of sale I've been told it's in stock, only to be told 4 days later that it's out of stock and that they have no idea when it'll be back in. Sorry, this is probably another question for Vodafone, when they get round to me.

And yes I agree, a complete exchange phone (including memory card) would have been a pretty good idea. It's a shame neither the repair centre or the Vodafone store are able to grasp this novel concept!

 

 

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Highlighted
17: Community Champion

For obvious reasons, I'm not in a position to answer any of those questions.   Wait for the team and press for a complete phone.

 

Visibility of stock on the Vodafone system does seem to be, let's say, variable and it may have to do with their having multiple systems and sales channels (yes, I know they're not alone in that...).  It is possible, though, that there was one battery in stock, but it was ordered by someone else before yours got earmarked before the order could complete.  Maybe.  It's the back cover I wouldn't expect to be stocked at all.

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Highlighted
Moderator (Retired)

Hi CrispyThirty,

 

Sorry to hear of your experience.

 

So we can take a look into this, get in touch with us here.

 

Cheers,

 

Laura

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Highlighted
4: Newbie

Laura,

 

I've just tried sending you an email twice via the link in your PM. Both times after confirming that I do actually want to send the email and not go through your "troubleshooting" pages, I've ended up on an unformatted page which if you scroll down through what appears to be multiple copies of the text that appears in your top nav,  you eventually find a message that implies that the message has been sent. Please can you confirm on here that you have received it.

So, I think you might also want to have a word with your web development team to let them know that they might have some CSS files (or JS?) missing on the "email sent" confirmation page:

For their info:

Firefox 33.0

Windows 7 (64 bit) on desktop PC

 

Yet another example of a poor Vodafone customer experience! :smileyhappy:

 

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Highlighted
4: Newbie

I've just checked my emails and I've got 4 "Thanks for contacting Vodafone customer care" emails so it looks like you might have got it!

Sorry for the multiple emails, I refreshed the confirmation page a couple of times while I was trying to work out why it was being displayed unformatted and it looks like this will have sent another email to you. Whoops! :smileyvery-happy:

 

I'm apologising to Vodafone after all they've done? #toonice

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Highlighted
Moderator

Hi CrispThirty,

 

I’ve check our inbox and can see your emails - I’ve closed 3 of them and left one (ref: #8284820) open so that you don’t receive multiple replies either. :Winking_smiley:

 

We’ll be in touch as soon as we can

 

Thanks,

 

Jenny

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Highlighted
4: Newbie

Update

So, after sending the email on Friday evening, I heard nothing from Vodafone until late on Monday afternoon when I got an email asking me for additional DP information. I replied that evening, sending my bank sort code and monthly line rental amount as requested.

I then heard nothing again until I received an email tonight at 9:30 pm telling me "I am unable to understand your exact concern. I would request you to please elaborate your concern in email" (Exact wording). I have replied with a summary of what I've already posted above. i,e, Due to errors and incompetence by the Andover Vodafone store and the repair centre, my son has been left without a phone for over 3 weeks now. Is it really that hard for Vodafone to understand that a phone with no battery is of absolutely no use?

Aaaargh, slowly losing the will. Is there no one at Vodafone prepared to take responsibility for their mistakes and sort them out without me having to do all the work?

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Highlighted
4: Newbie

A note to anyone reading this. I've found a page on here that let's you email the Vodafone CEO because in his words "I'm committed to ensuring we provide the best service possible and am therefore passionate about listening to our customers. If you'd like to give me any feedback about a great experience, or to report an issue to me, please use the form below."

 

The link is http://campaigns.vodafone.co.uk/jeroenhoencamp/

 

I've sent an email asking him to read this eforum post and tell me if the level of customer service provided by his Andover store is "the best service possible"

 

I'll post his response on here, if I get one :smileyhappy:

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Highlighted
Moderator (Retired)

Hi CrispThirty,

 

We’ve got your latest email and we’ll be in touch as soon as possible.

 

Thanks,

 

Sarah

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Highlighted
17: Community Champion

Remember thta, once the matter is with the CEO's office, the forum team can't intervene.  It's generally best to see what they can do before escalating the matter.

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Highlighted
4: Newbie

Right here's the latest update

Today, a battery arrived in the post, followed by a text from you 2 hours later telling me you've just dispatched it. You've obviously got a very fast postal service!

So, as we've now got an almost complete phone (Still waiting for you to organise replacing the memory card you lost!), we attempted to insert the micro sim card, after watching a YouTube video showing how to do it. Surprise surprise, there's meant to be a sim holder that slides out for you to put the sim card in but it's missing on this phone. Congratulations Vodafone on your great service and please can you send a sim holder at the same time as when you arrange to replace the missing memory card?

In case you don't believe me, here's a link on your Irish site which illustrates the existence of a sim card holder http://deviceguides.vodafone.ie/web/nokia-lumia-620/basic-use/first-use/insert-sim-and-battery/

I've pushed the sim card in without the holder but its moving about in the slot, so I'm not convinced it will actually work (Im waiting for a sim card swap to activate to find out). Also I'm not sure how I'm going to get it out again when you send the missing holder for it!

 

I'm sorry, but I'm getting very hacked off with your lack of interest in this problem. My first post on here was 9 days ago which is much longer than the 48 hour response time that one of your fan boys posted was the usual timescale. All I've had from you is requests for more information and very long silences!

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Highlighted
4: Newbie

In case I get another "I don't understand what your problem is" email, here is a summary of what I want:

1. A replacement memory card for the one that you lost (i.e.didn't remove when checking in the phone for repair)

2. A sim card holder for a Nokia 620 because the incomplete phone provided as an "upgrade" by your repair centre didn't have one and is unusable without it.

3. An answer to the questions under the "My questions to VF" heading that I posted in my original post

4. Probably too much to ask, but maybe an apology or even some kind of financial compensation for the way that I have been treated by you over the last month and the time and effort that I have spent trying to sort out problems that have solely been your fault

5. Can you not send me a complete exchange phone instead, as suggested by "hrym"? I would be perfectly happy to return the dogs dinner of spare parts that you've given me so far!

 

If you can't answer any of these, I would appreciate an email or post on here telling me what progress you've made with this case in the 10 days since I posted my original complaint

 

Thanks

 

 

 

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Highlighted
4: Newbie

I have just received this email from you:

 

"Thanks for your reply.

Now, I understand your whole concern. I sincerely apologise for the inconvenience caused to you. I would like to inform you that, we always suggest our customer’s before sending their phones for repair they have remove all phone accessories. Now in your case, I have discussed your case with my manager and taken special approval for you. You can buy back cover of your phone and battery from any other store or online and send us purchase receipt. We’ll credit your account up to £25.00. If you accept this offer, please get back to us with purchase receipt we’ll credit amount in your account.

We appreciate your understanding in this matter.

 

D******* B******
Customer Service Agent (eForum)

Vodafone Limited
Vodafone HQ, The Connection, Newbury, Berkshire, RG14 2FN
Registered in England No 1471587"

 

This is the reply I have just sent:

"I'm sorry but you obviously don't have any understanding of my whole concern. If you "always suggest our customer’s before sending their phones for repair they have remove all phone accessories" then I would suggest that George in your Andover store would have said this when I brought the phone in for repair, and I would have removed the memory card but he definitely did not,

I have got a back cover and battery, so quite why you think I want to order more is beyond me!

To reiterate my problem, which I have already posted on your eforum:

Without informing me, you gave me a different model of phone as a replacement for the one I brought in for repair, which did not have the following items included with it:

1. A back cover

2. A battery

3. A memory card

4. A sim card holder

Items 1 and 2 have finally arrived in the post now, but the phone is still unusable without item 4 and as a point of principle I still require a replacement memory card for the one you lost"

 

 

 

 

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Highlighted
Moderator

Hi @CrispThirty,

 

I’m sorry to hear this.

 

We’ve got your latest email reply and will be in touch as soon as we can.

 

Thanks,

 

Jenny

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Highlighted
17: Community Champion

While I share your pain, in viewof the offer you've had, I think I'd go ahead and buy the outstanding items myself - it'll be the quickest solution.   I checked and Nokia SIM card holders are available on ebay.  Memory cards are available everywhere, of course.

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Highlighted
4: Newbie

@hrym

I know that the email I quoted above was expectionally badly worded but you have obviously read something completely different to what I understood from it.

 

What I read was that:

1. The missing memory card's not Vodafone's problem because "I would like to inform you that, we always suggest our customer’s before sending their phones for repair they have remove all phone accessories"

2. They'll give me up to £25 if I order a back cover and battery myself - "You can buy back cover of your phone and battery from any other store or online and send us purchase receipt. We’ll credit your account up to £25.00."

 

I can't find anywhere in the email where this Vodafone "Customer Service" agent has suggested that this £25 is to replace the actual missing items and I'm unwilling to commit to replacing them until I have it specifically in writing from them and an assurance that I won't be accused of lying again when I try to claim the money back.

 

Anyway, why is it up to me to sort out the incompetence of the staff at Vodafone's repair centre, Andover store and eforum? As I've said before, I really feel I've wasted enough time and effort trying to sort out something that is in no way my fault :smileymad:

 

Thanks.

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Highlighted
17: Community Champion

There's no mention of the memory card or the SIM holder, it's true, but no specific exclusion of them either.   Personally, I'd buy the parts myself now and argue the issue later.

 

I agree that in an ideal world you shouldn't have to sort this yourself, but I suepct it's going to be the quickest option.  Because, in all probability, Vodafone don't have the various items in stock, they'll have to source them and that'll take time.  The offer to credit allows you to go elsewhere and get up and running again in a few days.  It's a balance between asserting your consumer rights and getting a working phone as quickly as possible and it all depends on which is mroe important to you.

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