This blog is mainly about the governance and future of policing and crime services. (Police & Crime Commissioners feature quite a lot.) But there are also posts about the wider justice system. And because I am town councillor and political activist, local & national issues are covered a little, as well.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Good bye Amazon

We all know about the financial finagling that allows Amazon to trade in the UK but somehow means it eludes paying its fair share of tax. For a long while, I stopped buying from its website. But then I drifted back: after all it is so easy and are other suppliers any more ethical in their tax affairs? (You see I can justify anything...)

Well, now I have had my fill. And it has nothing to do with tax. But it has everything to do with honesty. For this reason (and please hold me to this), I will no longer be spending any more money with Amazon.

What happened? I ordered two DVDs for myself the other day (Sunshine on Leith and One Chance) and they were delivered yesterday, through my letterbox at 3.37pm says the tracking website. Except the package was not delivered and despite two long chats with Amazon staff, the driver/deliverer 'cannot' be located to say where they actually did deliver the package.

All that Amazon want to do, is send me another package. I told them that this would a) not restore my trust in them b) not resolve the issue in the long term. In other words it is a cost of failure that ultimately I will be paying for. Moreover, in effect, it rewards the lying by the delivery company that a package was delivered through my door when it was not. Amazon have told me that their transport department will have a conversation with the contractor but they cannot send me a copy of the report of actions arising from that meeting. Note they said 'cannot'. I corrected their grammar and said it should be 'will not'.

So goodbye Amazon. I am off elsewhere to spend my money on DVDs and the like. You have shown yourselves up to be an inefficient, opaque and dishonesty rewarding company that I can no longer have confidence in.

UPDATE: 110914 | 0806:

Last night I received a comment from an anonymous source who said: How does that reward the dishonesty of the delivery company? I imagine enough bad reports againest the particular driver/company and Amazon will stop using them.

In answer I would say because all that Amazon seemed to want to do was send me another package rather than tackle the issue and resolve it. This rewards failure and as is evident from the link below, I am not the only one who thinks that 'Amazon Logistics' lie about what they have done. The forum thread linked below, started in May. Amazon have had nearly 4 months to react to and deal with these mounting criticisms of their contractor...

It seems I am not alone in my criticism of 'Amazon Logistics'. You can read an extensive forum discussion of similar problems to the above. I have just added my contribution:
Good to know I am not the only one. Have just written this email to their CEO (thanks for the address Y.A.Chang)
Dear Mr North
I understand you are the CEO of Amazon.
See below transcript as to why I will never do business with you again. Essentially you have hired inaccessible, unreliable and mendacious contractors to deliver the articles that customers order. Your processes are opaque and without accountability. Your customer service operators say `cannot' when they actually mean `will not'. In sum: I no longer have confidence or trust in your business.
UPDATE: 150914 | 1443:

Just received this reply back from Mr North's office:
Dear Mr Harvey,
My name is Brian Motherway and I work within Executive Customer Relations.
I am contacting you on behalf of the office of the Ltd Managing Director, Mr Christopher North. After reviewing your correspondence, Mr North has requested that I respond to your e-mail.
Rest assured however, Christopher takes e-mails like yours very seriously and is aware of the issue and our response both to you as well as internally to the various relevant departments.
Firstly, please accept my sincere apologies for the unfortunate issues you have experienced with the delivery of your order. I am sorry to hear of the poor service that you have received from us and in particular, the delivery service from Amazon Logistics. Thank you for taking the time to inform us of this matter. 
Please know that it is very important to us that our customers receive their orders as expected and we understand the disappointment and inconvenience caused by these events.
I can assure you that I have informed senior management in our Transportation Department of your experience. This matter will in turn be highlighted to senior management in Amazon Logistics to ensure that this is fully investigated. We truly value this kind of feedback, as it helps us continue to improve our website and provide a better service to our customers. Your correspondence will be used in reviewing the service provided by Amazon Logistics.
Thank you for taking the time to write to us and for bringing this to our attention. We hope that you will allow us an opportunity to serve you in the future.

Brian Motherway
Executive Customer Relations
... which is a start. Meanwhile I have discovered Rakuten | which appears to offer a comparable service (time will tell...). Also Oxfam online also have a fair few DVDs (etc.) for sale & despatch. 

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