Sunday, June 23, 2013

Automation

Jilda and I are both bone tired, so a few hours ago I sat down to write my update so we could retire early. The power flickered once, but came back on.
My fingers froze on the keys and I leaned my head back to look up at the light on the ceiling. It went dark again, and then came back on.
I could hear my UPS chirping which means I have about three minutes to shut all the open applications down.
Then the lights went out and didn't come back on. I managed to save all my work, and get the Mac shut down before the UPS died.
I fished my small flashlight from my backpack and poked in the numbers for the power company on the keypad of my desk phone. A chirpy automated voice answered and it was all I could do to keep from weaving a tapestry of less than Christian dialog with the computer voice. Even the most creative tirade would have earned a response like, "I didn't get that, do you want to pay your bill, change your service, or......."
Instead I said "Representative." The voice cheerfully said, "I can help you with most problems."
REPRESENTATIVE, I repeated.
I needed to speak with a representative to tell them the power had gone off and on several times today, but that's not something an automated system would understand.
Finally Sara answered the phone and within a few moments I had the problem reported and help was on the way.
I have a history with large corporations and I know that automation is a way of life.  But that doesn't mean you have to like it.


11 comments:

  1. Been there - done that! If it wasn't so darn frustrating, it would be funny. Last time it happened to me, I threw the phone across the room, and you are right - the response I got was - "I didn't get that". So maddening. I long for the days of live operators.

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  2. I despise automation... especially when you know what you need to talk about needs a representative... it can be frustrating...:-/

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  3. Oh I totally dislike the ones where you have to speak your chosen option and the automated voice will say in a jolly tone "I'm sorry I didn't get that, please repeat the word" or something and I get all insecure cos I think, it's how I speak, it's my voice, it's me! LOL!

    Take care
    x

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  4. VERY frustrating. I usually try to repeatedly press "0" and it usually takes me to a person, but companies are learning to bypass that unfortunately.

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  5. It's very dehumanizing to talk to an automated answering machine. I despise them also as well as the telemarketing calls that come at the wrong time when I'm scrambling to cook supper. Grrr....

    JB

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  6. Automation may save companies a lot of time & money, but for the customer/consumer it generally SUCKS!!

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  7. Oh, I get so tired of not being able to talk to a human being when I have a question. Too many companies go out of their way to keep us from speaking to anyone.

    Love,
    Janie

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  8. I hate automation too. I press 0 to talk to an operator. I like to talk to people. This post resonates with me!

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  9. Live people on the phone - this is what we need:-)
    Thank you for visiting my blog and your lovely comments. I am your new follower. Hope you will follow me back. Stay in touch:-)
    Hugs from New York,
    xx
    Ask Erena
    http://askerena.blogspot.com/

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  10. Seems I touched a nerve with this one :)

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  11. I applaud your determination, sir. A live voice is a wonderful thing in times of trouble.

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