19 Aug

DHL and City Link are incompetent

Blogging can be cathartic, I hear. Let’s have a go.

Delivery companies. All a bunch of muppets, or is it just me?

I ordered myself a new computer recently from Dell. I also picked out a shiny new monitor from OverClockers. Both delivered via a different company. Both, apparently, completely incompetent.

Dell first. They delivered my box via DHL. Dell offer a snazzy “this is how far your order has got” type page. On this page, at the last stage, it states that when your order is ready and has been passed to the delivery company, the page will update within 24 hours to let you know who that company is and a tracking number, so you can see it’s on the way. Did that happen? Nope. I was under the impression that the order hadn’t been shipped yet, so imagine my surprise when I find a card letting me know that I’d missed my delivery. Annoyed. So, okay, I’ll arrange to work from home on a Tuesday, and they can deliver it then. DHL say “no problem, Tuesday is fine.. we probably couldn’t have got it to you on Monday anyway.” Coolios! So, what do they do? They deliver it on Monday. Fantastic, idiots. Thanks for listening to my request. Fortunately, my ever-thoughtful flatmate was home and signed for the box and I have that now. Slightly miffed that they ignored me, but a happy Frances is a Frances with new toys and I’ll forget about it for now.

OverClockers and City Link have been far worse. I ordered the monitor on a Friday and thought I’d like to reduce my amount of work-at-home time and I’ll pay the premium for a Saturday delivery. Did it show up? Did it hell. The tracking notified me that a delivery had been attempted and no one was home. No – only 4 people with their hearing still intact were in the premises that morning. Apparently we must not have heard our very loud intercom buzzer that morning and the card he was supposed to have left must have mysteriously vanished into the ether.

I phoned OverClockers that Saturday afternoon, because City Link was closed at noon, and was rudely told by the girl on the phone that there was nothing she could do until Monday. At which point, rather than taking my name and order number, or evening apologising, she simply hung up without another word. Beautiful.

Pretty annoyed at this, I arrange for them to deliver the parcel for Tuesday on the Monday morning, since I’ve already arranged to stay home for the Dell delivery (read up, those with short attention spans).

Tuesday morning, and I sit patiently in my pyjamas, doing some documentation jobs, and I think I’ll just have a look at the tracking and see where my parcel is (this is at 9:30am). Oh, lovely. Apparently delivery was attempted at 9.03am and I wasn’t home. Did I die or something? Am I actually in the after-life and I just think I’m living, but to the rest of the world, this is but a ghost-flat?

So I phone OverClockers who phone City Link. Apparently the driver is “very good” and wouldn’t have left a card if someone had been there (well no, he’d have delivered the parcel I’d hope, and also note the distinct lack of said card). I state I’m slightly concerned that this driver is lost and has the wrong address, but I’m assured it’s okay, but at this point I’m assuming by “very good” they mean “can’t operate a doorbell”. She gives me the number for City Link, and I phone them. City Link inform me that the driver doesn’t have a phone, but they’re sending him a message some other way (carrier pigeon? smoke signals?) and that if I don’t have my parcel by around noon, I should phone back. Any one want to roll the odds on me being on the phone at noon?

What gets me the most is how on Earth is it beneficial for these companies to be so bad? It’s not like they get to keep everything they fail to deliver. It costs them more time, more money (petrol, man-hours etc.) and they have companies and customers calling them all the time to ask them why they’re so incompetent.

Additional: 2 phone calls to City Link later (one of which involved a very sarcastic lad who was adamant my husband had phoned earlier and told them I’d “popped out” – hint: my salutation is “Miss”) and another to OverClockers and the parcel finally arrived at just after 4pm. The cardboard box was a bit bruised, but fortunately the monitor works a charm. OverClockers are also refunding my Saturday delivery charge. Well, it’s the least they can do, right?

Additional Two: OverclockersUK have failed to refund postage and are no longer responding to my emails. Lovely!

11 thoughts on “DHL and City Link are incompetent

  1. Similar experience with Citilink (I think). Getting my Radiohead tickets delivered was a nightmare. They needed ID, but my friend buying the tickets couldn’t get time off work to be in. So he had to give me his passport, that I would then have to leave behind the desk at reception at Yahoo! so they could sign for the parcel for me.

    We arranged this ridiculous liaison to collect the passport and get it to reception the day before, so they’d deliver it next day when I was out of the office. They came a day early. No passport, reception hadn’t even been told my friend’s name by this point. Had to get them to come back two days later, precariously close to the date of the concert, and have them redelivered.

    I’m yet to experience delivery companies in the US. I’m pre-emptively sceptical.

  2. Stay well away from OverClockers; such a bunch of elitest arseholes.

    I actually live just around the corner from them and know the guys who started it all off,..when it was a poxy little corner computer store called ‘Millenium Computers’. There are a couple of good guys working there but most of them are right doochebags who won’t give you the time of day unless your computer looks like it’s come straight out of ‘Flight of the Navigator’.

  3. same problem with citylink!

    to my extreme astonishment:

    i wake up early to receive my new motherboard and 4 fans from OCUK. door bell goes and i think “great package is here!”

    go outside to catch the driver allready assuming im not in. after what must have been 30 seconds to but some clothes on.

    and i catch him trying to push my 150 pound motherboard over my 6 Foot gate!!!!

    later e-mails to OCUK complaining got me nowhere!!

  4. Same thing on countless occasions.

    1: I bought a laptop from e-buyer. They apparently tried delivering it 3 times over 3 days but they neither left a card, nor did the 3 people at home ever hear a knock at the door. I ended up having to travel 30 miles to Rugby to collect it. They said i NEEDED a card left by the driver. I didn’t have one but i went anyway. all they asked for is my tracking number. they gave me my laptop with no more questions… I could have been anyone!

    2: I ordered some RAM from yoyotech. they shipped by citylink and when i hadnt recieved it in a week, i called them, and they told me that citylink had returned it to them. not yoyotech’s fault but again, no knock or card from citylink. i had to pay for postage AGAIN because of citylink’s incompetance, but i admit they were very nice on the phone from yoyotech, i asked that they shipped with a different courier, and it arrived the next morning from FedEx. no problems.

    3: we needed a new compressor for our fridge-freezer. it was being delivered by citylink. it came at around 7:45am, which got me out of bed. i opened the curtains when i heard a knock at the door, but as soon as the driver knocked, he simply walked off, got back into his van and drove away. But of course that was my fault for not clawing at my front door like a zombie growling “citylink… citylink!! rrraaarrghhh… citylinkkkkkk… mmmm…”. Phoned them up, couldnt talk to anyone because it was ALL automated. Had to reschedule for a tuesday delivery (seeing as this was thursday it was rather annoying), but did that anyway. I awoke on tuesday morning, around 9pm to find the item, thrown over our 6.5ft back gate, the box all battered and the contents damaged.

    Citylink have a blatant disregard for peoples property and are in major need of investigation. I suggest anyone buying from a company that uses citylink as a courier service ask if it can be shipped by Royal Mail, FedEx, or Amtrak as ive experienced zero problems with any of them. Although if Citylink is the only option, make sure youre standing at your front door from 7am till 6pm with no breaks, not even to use the toilet.

  5. Please join my Facebook group and tell all your friends. Put pressure on companies to offer at least one alternative to City Link Initial.

    http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=34749297707

    If you ever had something delivered by Initial City Link, odds are that it was a negative experience. Initial City Link can’t do what seems to be no problem for other couriers. Causing irritation and aggravation to consumers.
    One forum thread I came across sums up Initial City Link:

    > Zero customer focus
    > Zero accountability
    > Zero support
    > Zero improvements

    But the blame resides in both the courier and the retailer. It has become pointless to complain to Initial City Link therefore consumers have to put pressure on retailers.

    What you can do:

    DON’T BUY if a retailer solely uses Initial City Link for shipping

    DON’T BUY if a retailer doesn’t offer you a choice of couriers

    CANCEL YOUR ORDER if there is a failed delivery which is not your fault. Go and order elsewhere with a reliable courier.

    TELL YOUR RETAILER why you won’t buy from them anymore. Insist on a choice of delivery options. Come back to them once they do.

    You can post your personal experience with Initial City Link but usually it’s the same story over and over again. ‘Attempted’ deliveries which never happened, ‘lost’ delivery cards, ‘unfulfilled’ deliveries, unhelpful and rude staff and Initial City Links great company policy which serves as an excuse for everything.

    Whatever Initial City Links excuse: The consumer is at fault in their eyes. QUITE RIGHT! Because at the end of the day the consumer had a choice to order or not to order from a company that uses Initial City Link or could have paid a little extra for a reliable alternative courier.

    There will be three lists in this forum:
    > Companies who use Initial City Link
    > Companies who don’t use Initial City Link
    > Companies who have solely used Initial City Link / and or did not offer their customers any choice previously but do now due to consumer pressure.

    PLEASE DON’T POST IN THIS GROUP IF A DELIVERY WENT WRONG DUE TO YOUR FAULT.

    IF YOU ARE A COMPANY AND THINK YOU ARE LISTED IN THE WRONG CATEGORY OR YOU NOW PROVIDE A CHOICE OF AT LEAST ONE OTHER COURIER TO CONSUMERS PLEASE EMAIL CONSUMERSSTRIKEBACK@INVENT2B.COM AND YOU WILL BE MOVED INTO THE RIGHT CATEGORY AFTER VERFIFICATION.

  6. Got home from to one of those grubby cards from CityLink just now.
    What sort of slack jawed cretin thinks it is a good business model to attempt to deliver to domestic addresses during working hours? Do they live in the 1950’s when houses were full of housewives who could take deliveries? Has it completely escaped their notice that most of the rest of us are at work earning to pay for their ineptitude?

  7. hay Disgruntled, are you thick? city link deliver to the address that the senders tell them to send too. the senders also choise the service i.e 07:30 to 18:00. so next time when you book your order you might just like to change the delivery address to your work address.

  8. “You pay peanuts – you get monkeys”
    Does your paycheck tell you what you are?

    No, but it would, however, tell me something about what my employer thinks of me… which in turn would result in me forming an opinion about what I think of them for paying peanuts.

    I guess if you want staff that DON’T act like monkeys, then you’ll have to stop paying them peanuts… it all depends on what side of the fence you’re standing on really, doesn’t it?

    If I were to stand on the otherside of the fence at Paignton Zoo
    (as any reasonably wise person should do), I would soon discover that monkeys prefered bananas to a humble handful of peanuts, thats just the way that are (its nice to drift off on a tangent isn’t it lol)

    Anyway, where was I… Oh yes…

    People have different levels of knowlage an intelligence, but I’d never look down at them, or refer to them as being monkeys, or treat them with any such lack of respect… if I did such a thing, I’d have to be an arrogent, selfish, self-centred, high minded fool who thinks they know it all and is better than everyone else.

    I just can’t do that.

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  10. The lack of customer service professionalism at Overclockers is so bad – my experience is that these courier companies are generally good, but when you get a bad experience it really is bad. I always use Royal Mail Special Delivery to send everything – the success rate is 99.5%

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