Paul Wreyford’s saga of the Tesco trollies is a good example of the inefficiency that causes irritation to the public.
Banks, insurance companies and some areas of the public sector are competing hard for bottom place in the customer service league.
A bank I know may not answer your call in the local branch and you will be automatically switched to ‘back-room staff.’ You will be greeted by someone with a distinctive Liverpudlian accent who is sat somewhere on Merseyside.
Sadly, your routine enquiry will then have to be sent on to the head office in Leeds and you will be lucky if anyone gets back to you from anywhere!
We are constantly frustrated by inadequate computer systems, terrible automated call centres and poorly-motivated staff who seem to lack proper training.
I believe management is mainly responsible but, to be fair, everyone seems hamstrung by bureaucratic procedures which are dictated by machine.
If organisations really put customers first, they should start with a freephone telephone number to contact a human quickly. Email access for problems or complaints could also help, including mail to
Delays and communication failures are currently widespread.
It is time to improve things.