Friday, 11 September 2009

Rant - French Customer Service - Rant

What is it with corporations/businesses in France?

OK I know that France is not at the bleeding edge of Internet usage, but FFS if you have a web-site then at least make the most basic of information therein accurate...

I needed to go out to the hardware store (BricoShed to those in the know) to get some roofing sheets for the newly built Goose House. So knowing that I had other things that I could be getting on with and that the 'OH' also wanted to get this completed quickly, we looked on their website to get their opening hours.

Seeing that today is a Friday, I was not surprised to see that both today and tomorrow they're open all day without the standard French 2 hour lunch-break. Well this fitted into our day plans well, immediately after our noon lunch we hitched up the trailer and tootled off to Bellac some 32km from us (our local hardware places only did what we needed on special order). We arrived there at 13h15, plenty of time to shop and get back home in good time.

This is of course where we ought to have known better, they were closed for lunch, not re-opening until 14h30 - pissed off is an understatement - we knew that it was going to take a while getting what we wanted.

Well of course it didn't make any sense to leave and go back another time, that would have really wasted the time and fuel - so we waited.

Once in the store, we found that lo and behold they had what I wanted - that's an achievement in itself - but then the process of getting the stuff ordered/paid for began (it's out of the warehouse so make a ticket, then pay, then collect - you know the procedure). Well we had to wait and wait, the French guy in front of the queue I think was telling the clerk his life-story so that the clerk would know exactly what he wanted, on and on and on he went. The clerk even hinted to him that there were other customers waiting, I don't think the guy even took a breath.

Anyway eventually we got the stuff ordered, couldn't get the colour I wanted (yes it was in stock, we could see it, but they couldn't find a price/code!!!), so black it is. Off we pop to the check-out, paid for this and the new toilet set, when we then had to wait for a Brico Oick (sp) to check that our purchase was 'not broken', so that took time.

Yay, we were free to get this into the van and then drive round to the warehouse gates to await our order. Got there, pressed the intercom and waited at least another 20mins for the guy to come and serve me.

So as you can imagine, we've wasted a heck of a lot more time than we expected to and now it's too late to start my other planned chores.

<...Rant over>

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