A tale of bureaucracy

As readers of my blog will know I have been working from home since late January.  In February my company and I decided that home working was probably for me and that I we should make the switch permanent.  It’s been a low process to get official designation as a home worker, but that did finally arrive on the 19th of August.  I wanted to share with you the story of getting a business line and broadband installed.

 

  1. I get an email from Ms C in HR with two forms, one completed by HR and one that I need to complete
  2. I correct an error on Form A filled in by Ms C
  3. Form A is a request for quotation from BT and justification which needs to be sent to Mr X in Internal IT.  Form B is another justification which needs to be sent to my manager along with the Quote and then needs to be sent to Mr X
  4. I send Form A to Mr X
  5. I then receive a phone call from Mr Y from BT asking me what I need so that they can install it.  I have already provided all this information once on Form A.
  6. We agree a date for installation; I am impressed the process was quick and simple!
  7. 10 minutes later I receive another phone call from Mr Y telling me that he has made a mistake; apparently he is only meant to provide a quote and not schedule an installation.  
  8. I then receive an email from Mr Z asking me to fill in form A and send it to Mr X.  I reply saying I have already sent Form A to Mr X.
  9. My Z replies apologising and says he will ask BT for a quote for “ADSL single 550 plug and go”
  10. I reply to Mr Z that this does not meet my requirement, which I specified on Form A, for a router, not a USB modem and for a 1mb rather than 512mb.
  11. Mr Z replies saying he will ask BT to Quote for that.
  12. A nice lady from BT rings me and asks me the same questions I answered on form A again, and says she will quote for a Router and ADSL 1000.
  13. The quote never arrives but I get an email saying that Mr X will only approve “ADSL single 550 plug and go”, which puts me back to step 10.  Why bother going through steps 11 and 12! 
  14. I reply again that this does not meet the requirement, and ask who I need to speak to to resolve this issue. 
  15. Once I get the quote I then need to send it to my manager for approval and then forward that approval, the quote and “Form A” AGAIN to Mr X and Mr A.  I will also need a booking code which my manager will provide.
  16. These will then be forwarded to our Customer Order Fulfilment team who will raise an order on BT
  17. Then Mr Y will probably ring me back so I can get back to step 4.

 

What’s interesting about this process?

 

  1. The pricing is standard, so why do we need all of this quoting
  2. Almost all home workers get a business line and broadband connection, the home working and other associated expenses have already been approved and a booking code assigned so why two approvals in serial?
  3. It’s interesting that I never see the quote so I am not able to contibute to the discussion as to whether the option quoted is Correct, or Cost Effective.  However if I look at the BT personal service, 1Mb rather than 512Mb costs £3/month more, and a router costs about £20 more.  For a service upon which I am totally dependant every day and utilise heavily this means that someone considers 18p a day too expensive!
  4. It’s probably much cheaper to keep my residential connection and existing router, upgrade it to 1Mb/s and add a second soft line, or setup auto redirect to my Mobile so we don’t miss incoming calls.
  5. It’s a lot easier when you do it yourself!

Steve Richards

I'm retired from work as a business and IT strategist. now I'm travelling, hiking, cycling, swimming, reading, gardening, learning, writing this blog and generally enjoying good times with friends and family

4 Responses

  1. Anonymous says:

    Doing it yourself is disintermediation of the most extreme form which provides instant gratification but undermines the livelihood of the people who live on and ARE the overhead. They see it as ‘added value’ – the more the merrier. You, Sir, are an abominable anarchist who seeks to take us back to bartering and hunting. It’s bad enough not having secretaries and having to type.

    The service industry is feeding on its own flesh; badly cooked by a dozen incompetent cooks X, Y, Z who should be a lumberjack.

  2. Anonymous says:

    My excuse – it’s in the genes – according to my personality profile “INTJs are compelled to establish their own rules”! As to “having to type”, my voice to text software arrives next week!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Voice to text? I have been experimenting on and off with ViaVoice. I can get some use out of it but my son, fror whom it was meant, could never ‘train’ it well. It requires some dedication to get it to work and for technical text it is a pain. Maybe you will try ‘something better’ or try something ‘better’ (if you see what I mean).

    As for bureaucracy, all’s been said in “Yes Minister” and the patient-less hospital.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Voice to text? I have been experimenting on and off with ViaVoice. I can get some use out of it but my son, fror whom it was meant, could never ‘train’ it well. It requires some dedication to get it to work and for technical text it is a pain. Maybe you will try ‘something better’ or try something ‘better’ (if you see what I mean).

    As for bureaucracy, all’s been said in “Yes Minister” and the patient-less hospital.

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