Round and Round the Tech Support bush, the user chased an answer…

HP: “That’s a software problem, call Microsoft.”
Microsoft: “That’s a program issue, call the vendor.”
Vendor: “That’s a hardware problem, call Dell.”

Today’s iteration of this problem came whilst attempting to register my bank card with Google Pay so I can pay with a tap of my phone. (PS: I’ve done this before successfully, but we have a new bank.)

Digital Wallet Verification: “We need to send you a one-time code, but the phone number you gave me doesn’t match our records. We could send you a code by email, but you don’t have one on record. [Yes, I do. My bank emails me all the time.] You’ll have to call the number on the back of your card.”

Customer Service: “Sorry, we can’t see your phone number. All we can do is block your card if it’s been lost or stolen.” Me, shouting: “NO! FOR THE LOVE OF MOGG DON’T DO THAT!!”

Financial Institution: “Your phone number in our system is correct. The problem is with Digital Wallet.”

Digital Wallet: (rinse and repeat, but this time get elevated to a manager) “We can’t change your phone number here. We can only verify what your bank gives us.”

Me: “But I just called my bank and they said my data is accurate.”

Digital Wallet: “You need to have your bank reach out to their client services and make sure the card record is correct, not the account record. And since you have two failed attempts, we can’t verify this card.” [Turns out I have to wait 7 days to try again after their system unlocks the card.]

By now I’ve been on this hellish merry-go-round for over an hour.

Financial Institution [Time: 1640 hours] “Our offices are now closed. Please call back during normal business hours.”

Exit user, weeping.

Technology: it’s a great servant when everything works well, but when something goes FUBAR it becomes a hellish taskmaster.¹

The Old Wolf has spoken.


Footnotes

¹ In all of these calls, every agent was doing their best to be helpful within the parameters they were given. But the major challenge for me was understanding them (except for the manager at Digital Wallet, who was an American). I’m a trained linguist who speaks a jugful of languages and is familiar with a hogshead more, and I have the hardest time attuning my ears to these outsourced accents. They’re just bad.

Embittered plea to Corporate CEO’s: “When you outsource your customer service function, please make sure that the agents are capable of speaking with an understandable accent.”

I can’t imagine how hard it must be for someone who is only used to Great Plains English.

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