FedEx -1 or so, AT&T +1

A typical FedEx delivery truck. Photograph taken in Chicago, Illinois on August 26, 2005 by Kelly Martin.

FedEx, the oft revered delivery company, has got some issues brewing. Here’s two of them.

There’s a company who’s goods I purchase. They ship FedEx signature required. They offer no options (that’s another story). This is a problem because often no one is home when they attempt delivery. That means either traveling to the FedEx facility and picking it up (that’s not what I call delivery) or signing the door tag and leaving that on my front door.

most people just sign the door tag and wait another day. I find that annoying since the package was literaly on my doorstep already. Further, if the signature is supposed provide security, the doortag does the opposite. It announces for all who drive by that there will be a package left on my stoop sometime soon. There is no way (from what I understand) to inform FedEx of when a good time to deliver the package would be, so I can’t help them deliver the package securely.

Recently, they started calling to inform me that a package that requires a signature will be arriving the next giving me the option leaving a preemptive doortag of my own making for the driver, once again announcing that package will be there soon, and now saving them a trip but not improving security one bit. So FedEx’s situation is improved by the phone call, but mine has not since again, they provide no opportunity to give them feedback as to when a good delivery time would be, or maybe even a “press 2 in liu of leaving a sign on your door that screams ‘a package that is so cool and expensive it required a signature will be here, on this very spot, later.’ “

And if that’s not annoying enough. The Dude In Charge at work kindly upgraded the phone we use for testing and development which I carry. He ordered the upgrade which AT&T is shipping. They do not have a corporate name associated with the account so it ships to the company address without the company name, and the FedEx delivery person doesn’t know what to do with it (and/or the mailroom rejects it). Delivery Exception is noted on the FedEx tracking site. Again, with no way to help FedEx get the package destined for you, to you. Nor information about where to call or find your local FedEx delivery station which is noted as “At Local Fedex Facility: New York, NY, US”. Really? No street address… nothing. In a city the size of NY. Seriously.

So I ask around and someone suggest calling them. Hah, I think. How mid-fifties. But since their website provided no useful information, I called. I choose the track option and the computer notes the delivery exception and passes me on to a rep. The rep informs me that the package is at a FedEx store around the corner. I explain that I will be going to pick up this package despite it being in the name of The Dude In Charge, and ask what ID or whatever I should I bring with me? She says a letter from The Dude In Charge with my name explaining that I will be picking it up on his behalf, and a photo ID.

Fully armed with said stuffs, I waltz around the corner. The counter guy plugs in the numbers and says sorry that package isn’t here. Backing and forthing commences, and he explains (with true sorrow) that the package is at the main place 606 49th between 11th & 12th. OK I think, I go by there every day, so I head over there.

Parking is nonexistant, so I park illegally in the Charter bus parking spots and kept on eye on my car. The counter person can’t be bothered to look up or offer a greeting. Nice. I hand over the letter with the tracking number and explaining who I am. I’m then informed that the package is there but she can’t release it unless AT&T says so. Why did no one else mention this to me? “I called ya’ll” I said and they told me to bring this exact documentation with me. “Yeah. We have trouble with them.” Great. “Them”. As if “Them” wasn’t wearing a FedEx uniform and answering the phone for FedEx. I walked out empty handed.

Does all this sound like a good experience?

As I’m commuting home AT&T was informed of the Exception and called the current phone (which I carry) to ask if I could provide the missing info… which I was able to provide so (if FedEx doesn’t screw up again) it should be deliverable. We’ll find out in the morning.

While folks whine about AT&T all the time, they did get this right. They didn’t just shrug and say it’s FedEx’s issue to deliver it, it’s literally out of our hands, they’re actively trying to get stuff delivered to their customers. FedEx on the other hand isn’t helping their customer (AT&T) and is delivering a bad experience for folks at both ends of their service.

UPS should be thrilled.

[It is with the utmost irony that I note that I returned home to find a door tag from FedEx on my door. Sigh.]