I think your food is very moreish. Your confectionary? Totally addictive. Your customer service? Awful. To be more precise, it stinks.
And whilst I’m being specific, I have to make it clear that I am referring to the customer disservice I received at the hands of one store manager on Sunday the 7th of February. He’s the store manager??? at Bluewater. Why the vitriolic tone? Read on, all is about to be revealed.
I had a dinner to go to on the 8th of January. None of the dresses I’d ordered from Next fit. So I decided to order from M&S. I placed my order on the 4th of January, using the nominated day delivery service. This meant my order was due to arrive on the 8th. I know I was cutting it pretty close, but I didn’t have much of a choice as I couldn’t go out shopping.
Waited all day for the delivery, no show. Checked my email in the evening to find out that M&S had sent me one round about 1am to say the dresses would not be delivered because it had snowed. This is the UK, everything grinds to a halt when it snows (except the bills), so I shrugged my shoulders, and dug out something else to wear.
The dresses were delivered the following Saturday, a week and a day after the nominated day delivery was supposed to arrived. I didn’t bother to unpack them, I had my own drama going on. My credit card bill arrived, and it reminded me I needed to return the dresses so I could get a refund. I must reiterate that these dresses had remained sealed in their wrappers, unopened. Since they hadn’t arrived in time, I hadn’t bothered to try them on. They were as pristine as the day they had been made.
Anyways, come Sunday, I grabbed the box the delivery had come in, and headed off to Bluewater to return them. The first indication I had that there were going to be problems, was when the CS woman said ‘The name on your card doesn’t match the name on the order.’
‘I know that.’ I replied. ‘The order is in my married name, the card is still in my maiden name. It wasn’t a problem when I was placing my order.’
She asked for ID in the name on the card. I didn’t have any ID in my maiden name on me, and it was the first time in my entire life I had been asked for ID just to return items. She then asked for my PIN. I do not know my PIN. I only use this particular card for online shopping, and like most of you know, you do not need to enter your PIN when making a cyber purchase. She said she could not process the refund without my PIN. I asked to see her supervisor. Her supervisor came, and said the same thing. So I asked to see the manager. And out he came.
He told me he could not process the refund without a PIN, the register wouldn’t let him. ‘So what am I supposed to do with the dresses?’ I asked. ‘You can take them back with you and keep them’ he said.
‘Keep them?’ I gasped, unable to believe my ears. ‘The reason why I am returning them is because I don’t want them’
He shrugged, he clearly did not give a toss. ‘I can’t give you a refund, you have to send them back by post to the address on the parcel summary’
I tried again. ‘If I send these back via post, I will not enclose my credit card. How then will my refund be processed? Surely there must be something you can do here to help me?’ ‘If you can’t put this on my card, can I have the cash instead?’
He remained inflexible. ‘I’m sorry, the best I can do is give you a credit note.’
‘A credit note? And I can use this to pay my credit card bill?’ I asked.
He clearly missed the irony in my voice. ‘No you can’t’ he replied glibly.
I realised I wasn’t getting anywhere, so I asked if I could leave the box with them so they could send it to where it needed to go so my refund could be processed eventually, and he said a big fat no.
So I left, clutching the box, with the dresses inside it. And I was seething with fury. Reluctantly, I came to the following conclusions, you take your pick.
Marks and Spencer is a thieving company who were unwilling to assist me in getting a refund so I could pay off my credit card bill. Rather they offered me a credit note of £185.50, so I could come back and spend it in their store, like I had a neon sign emblazoned on my forehead reading ‘Mug’.
Marks and Spencer is a draconian company that installs figureheads in it stores, and gives them the title ‘Store Manager’ so they feel good as they strut around their little kingdoms. However, it refuses to give them any discretion whatsoever in carrying out their duties, it doesn’t trust them to be able to exercise such discretion in favour of its paying customers.
The manager is a fully empowered member of Marks and Spencer’s workforce, who just decided that he didn’t want to help. And so he didn’t. I know he could have called up the internet sales people and sorted something out if he’d wanted to. Then again, maybe that hadn’t been in his training manual. Or it had, and he hadn’t read it.
Maybe a name change is in order? Marks and Senser? A little common sense goes a long long way.
There are other less flattering options, but it’s been two days now, and I’m not as cheesed off as I was, so I’ll stop here.
p.s. Your chocolate eclairs are truly scrumptious.