The Friday before last we received an order over the internet for the collection of a wedding dress from Barcelona, Spain and delivery to our client in Johannesburg, South Africa. It is an amazing story of perseverance.
As usual we sent the client the paperwork consisting of the air waybill and the invoice for customs purposes and, at her request, we copied in the “customer relations” lady at the factory who was to be responsible for despatch of the item. We received back an email that the dress wasn’t ready so we had to cancel the collection, Courier Collection 1.
Well, our customer went mad because the bride’s fitting was the following Wednesday and, magically, the dress was ready in less than an hour. The UPS driver turned up for collection but the “customer relations” lady at the factory had failed to print the paperwork so he went away again, Parcel Collection 2.
We organised a third package collection after obtaining the “customer services” lady’s assurance that she had printed the paperwork but, as it was lunch time and a Friday she had to leave the office and go home so when UPS arrived reception was closed so Parcel Pickup 3 also failed.
At this point I have to say I gave up. In the face of such complete incompetence what can you do? However, Susan, who does our internet fulfilment, had the bit between her teeth and was not going to relinquish this. She organised a fourth visit from UPS to collect the parcel from the warehouse door before they closed at 4.30 (it was Friday, after all) and this Package Collection 4 was successful.
By Saturday morning the wedding dress was in Johannesburg, on Monday it cleared customs and on Tuesday at 11.59 am it was delivered by UPS to the shop to be prepared for the bride’s fitting on the following day. So a triumph for Susan, a triumph for UPS, a relief for the customer and no misery for the bride. Just a mystery about what “Customer Services” means in Spain.