Customers above Brands!

I have recently had an unpleasant taste with the United Parcel Service (aka UPS) based on a escalating cases and experiences with them.

Based on the 2013 mission statement of UPS: What We Seek to Achieve: Grow our global business by serving the logistics needs of customers, offering excellence and value in all that we do. Maintain a financially strong company-with broad employee ownership-that provides a long-term competitive return to our share owners.

Let's break their mission statement down with respect to the mistakes and fails I have experienced with them and how a company with such unprofessional operations should actually file a Chapter 11 as opposed to grow.

1) SERVING THE LOGISTICS NEEDS OF CUSTOMERS - FAILED!

I have recently moved from Boston to Los Angeles with my fiance to embark on this beautiful and exciting new life only to be annoyed by the inefficient business structure of UPS.

The main purpose and function of UPS, as stated on their mission statement, is to serve to the logistics needs of their customers. Get one package from Destination A to Destination B within the requested time. Well, guess what, UPS screwed up big time with that expected main function.

I have created 19 labels for 19 boxes late August, before we left Boston, to be delivered to Los Angeles. Measured the box sizes and weighed each of them and paid about $1940 total. Aside from the fact that their website is a huge chaos, I was informed by Customer Service that with an app they call "MyChoice" we can reschedule the delivery date so that we can receive all of our 19 boxes on that desired date.

After hauling the boxes downstairs one by one and getting them picked up by the UPS driver, who showed up at 7:30pm, I got on MyChoice to change the delivery dates. ($5 extra cost per box if you want to change the delivery date)

With much struggle and stress with their system and interface, I have managed to receive written confirmation that all 19 boxes will be delivered on September 8th. 

Today, September 8th; as I am writing this blog in full frustration, our boxes have not been delivered. Sooooooo that is Fail #1

2) OFFERING EXCELLENCE AND VALUE IN ALL THAT WE DO - FAIL!

For a business to be successful, the brand has to focus on its main stakeholder also known as the CUSTOMER! 

Customers seek promises to be fulfilled in the best demanded and promised quality. In UPS's case, within the right time and right communication. Below I will be listing down all the fails in quality I had to face with UPS since day 1 till even now.

a) Lack of user friendly interface on web and app: While creating the 19 labels for the boxes I ran into an obstacle of not being able to create 19 requests at once. I called the Customer Service and was informed that I should start an account to create at most 20 labels. So I created my account as I was informed and began creating the 19 shipping labels. 

Once I submitted the weight and size information for the labels, I was asked to pick a delivery date and the most I was allowed to pick was September 5th. My plane to Los Angeles was on September 7th so there wouldn't be anyone to receive the delivery if they had attempted to deliver on September 5th. I called the Customer Service once more and with much struggle mentioned below, I got my answer from the last person on the phone, MyChoice.

MyChoice is an "APP" (so they say) that allows you to manage your delivery dates, alerts, and delivery details. It can be accessed from a smartphone or via browsers on your devices. With my detailed research from endless phone conversations with UPS, I learned that your packages have to be picked up first in order for you to view them on your MyChoice. 

Once my packages were picked up, I gave a day for the system to refresh so that I could go on to MyChoice and change the delivery date. After several failed attempts across different platforms, I called the Customer Service again! I kept on receiving an error that said I could not change the delivery date and that I should contact UPS for further information. I spoke to 3-4 people across different departments and I was told that I had to activate my MyChoice with an authorization code. When I asked them for the authorization code, expecting that it would be sent to me via email, they said the most outrageous thing possible. At a highly digital age we live in, UPS sends one thing in hard copy mail format, your authorization code! On top of that, they sent it to my delivery address that I haven't even moved into yet. 

So when I ask why they can't send a code by the email I submitted and that all other delivery and retail places contact digitally, the answer I get is "because we are UPS". Well, because you are UPS I should not be working with you!

By some miracle, someone corrected her coworker and said I wouldn't need an authorization code to change the delivery date and that from their end they can't manually change the date for me. HELPLESS! 

After a few days, a miracle happened and all of a sudden I was able to change the delivery dates. I paid $5 per box ($95 in total) to set the new delivery date to be September 8th since my flight would get to LA on September 7th. I have received 19 confirmation emails on top of an extra 19 confirmation emails followed by the next day stating that the boxes will be delivered on September 8th. That failed miserably!

b) Lack of internal communication: As I reached out and spent endless hours with the Customer Service of UPS I can't tell you how many times I had to repeat myself with my logistics story and how I needed to get the delivery date changed. I spoke with more than 6 individuals across 3-4 different departments and spent countless hours on the phone damaging my brain with their lack of intellect and skills.

UPS does not have efficient understanding of Customer Relationship Management (CRM). Regular businesses, in order to have a strong relationship with their customers, use CRM software to deliver information within their firm and make sure they are on the same page with their customer. I was never assigned a case number to begin with and even if I were not told that case number, the details were never put in the case itself probably, and even if they were put, the person who should have read them did not. So I ended up having to repeat myself to each person multiple times because they just DO NOT get it!

c) Lack of external communication: MyChoice allows you to receive alerts via email and/or text and you need to set it up with your contact information in order to enroll in this service. After I have enrolled in this, however, I was not contacted in a detailed or frequent way for me to be well informed about the mistakes and delays in my shipments. I and my fiance ended up waiting at our apartment for 4 consecutive hours because we were told that the delivery time period would be on September 8th between 4:15pm and 7:00pm. No text alerts whatsoever were sent until I called the customer service and she said "ohhhh i think only one of your boxes is in the truck, the other 18 is not going to be delivered." 

When I asked why, I only got the answer "I don't know!" well that makes the two of us then lady! Coming back to my original point, however, if I hadn't called god knows who would have informed me about this lack of efficiency.

d) No management on board: Every time I called customer service to get answers, the floor level staff would only give me the answers that they are given but couldn't elaborate. I had to ask for the management and I always got the answer, after holding on the phone for 20 minutes, that there is no management on the floor. It takes you 20 minutes to get to say "sorry there is no manager"? BS!

e) No ownership of mistake: From day 1 of us choosing UPS there has been countless mistakes done by UPS and there is no responsible ownership from UPS for their mistakes and making up for it. When our delivery was not made today, the customer service says "oh the driver is running out of time so we can't make your delivery." why am I the one to pay the burden for that? If the driver is running out of time, you pay extra for his time and make up for your mistake. I should not be the one to pay for your lack of efficiency.

When I called them to speak about the miserable MyChoice, they just couldn't help me in any way and kept on trying to guide me to the same page as if I was not capable of guiding myself to the links I needed to go on. When I told them about the errors, they never took ownership and handled the situation. Shoving it under the rug is definitely not professional because you leave your customer alone with the problem you have created!

3) Maintain a financially strong company-with broad employee ownership-that provides a long-term competitive return to our share owners. - FAIL!

If every customer acted like I did, the companies would be more careful in their operations and be customer centric as opposed to money centric. I will be pursuing my request for a full refund from UPS after our boxes are properly delivered because I did not receive the service I was expecting to receive in exchange for my payment.

You can only be financially strong if you actually EARN it the promised way and not screw people over with your mistakes and unprofessional excuses.

DO NOT USE BRANDS THAT DO NOT RESPECT YOU!