Where I fit in the box of crayons....

Do you ever get that feeling like there's more out there? That's the feeling that brought me to beyond borders. The global community is growing, and I have not yet become a part of it. I want to be a contributing citizen to the global community through participation and action. Over the years, I have developed an appreciation for diversity and difference, and look for other ways that people are doing things. There’s a whole world out there beyond our North American perspective that has the potential to change the way I see things, and to change my life. Gahndi said, "Be the change you want to see in the world." I think we should not only find the change within ourselves, but also take part in the change we want to see in the world. I hope that Beyond Borders will offer a medium in which I can be the change I want to see in the world, and also take part in that change.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Down with FedEx.

As canadians most of us will take an unfavourable answer if it's candy coated in sorries and I hope you understands, but this is disrespect...

about a month ago I wrote a letter to FedEx asking if they would be willing the compensate the expense of shipping 6 digital cameras from Toronto to Ukraine to be used by the girls in the orphanage. then I wrote 3 follow up letters checking in on the status of my request. I am extremely disappointed in the way they responded. Here is their formulaic response letter to me, and my response back. Please think about this episode the next time you need to ship something.....

the Fedex response after over a month....

Dear Denise,

Thank you for your letter offering Federal Express Canada Ltd. the opportunity to provide donated/discounted shipping in support of your initiative in the Ukraine.

Your letter was forwarded to me by our customer service department, as I am responsible for FedEx corporate social responsibility programs in Canada.

I'm sorry to say that FedEx will not be able to offer support at this time.

As I'm sure you can appreciate, we receive numerous charitable, sponsorship and advertising requests from employees, customers and the general public. Unfortunately, with limited resources, we are unable to assist all those who ask for and merit our assistance.

As such, we have chosen to limit our support to very specific groups/causes in order to meet with our corporate strategy and communication/marketing objectives.

To learn more about the work we do in the community and the organizations we support, please visit http://www.fedex.com/ca_english/about/eventandsponsor/.

Thank you again for considering FedEx. We wish you great success.
Stephen Anderson / stephen.anderson@fedex.com
T 905.212.5374 / 1.877.363.6316
F 905.212.5670
M 416.553.6806

MY response...

Hello Stephen,

Although I am sure that this does not relate personally to you (please forward to customer service, or any other department that may handle this), it is really disappointing that this is the response I have received from Federal Express Canada. Your response letter is disappointing for two reasons, having very little to do with saying no.

The first reason that your letter is disappointing is that it is a formulaic letter. I expect generic copy and paste letters for companies that respond within 24 to 48 hours to a sponsorship request - not companies that take over a month to respond to a request. I would have expected something a little bit more original with over a month to think about this. It is a shame that this is the level of customer service that Federal Express thinks is sufficient.

The second reason that this is extremely disappointing is length of time it has taken for a response to be received. The reason that I contacted Federal Express in the first place is so that we could get the cameras to the girls at the orphanage much quicker than ground post (which is till slightly over what my budget allows for). I have waited over a month for a reply in which time the cameras could have been sent, and received. The time it has taken you to send a formulaic response letter is time that has been taken away from very important people. It is a shame that this was of such low priority, and that your company can not appreciate the importance of doing something good for someone else. With the time you have taken to respond, you have essentially robbed these 60 girls of a wonderful opportunity to learn a new skill, and enjoy a tiny bit of enrichment in their grim and dreary lives.

I am very much used to hearing "no" from companies; when you are in the business of asking for charity, no must be a response you are ok with hearing. I am a mere drop in the bucket of corporate giving - I offer no banner space, or mutual advertising/exposure. It is not a good PR move to help me out because no one, really, will ever know - so I understand. This isn't about the "no" response. Your response to my request says two things to me: 1) it says that Federal Express Canada does not really actually value the work that its customers are engaged in on a community level, and 2) Federal express does not see the customer as a number one priority. These two facts are saddening to learn because I always rely on Federal Express for my shipping needs, but now know that your "Choose FedEx to experience outstanding customer service" tag line is not the reality of the company. As a customer I feel unappreciated, and disrespected because of the way you have handled this request. I do understand that you receive may request for donations, and have an appreciating for limited resources, but I really think that you could have handled this request much much better.

I would like to let you know that you have lost a customer because of this incident, and I intend to let all my donors and friends know about the length of time it took to respond, the way in which you responded, and what your response was. Again, I am extremely disappointed with this whole situation. I will be using another company for my shipping needs to get the cameras to Ukraine, and for anything else beyond that.

I do hope that you improve your customer service practices.

Denise Soueidan-O'Leary

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the heads-up Denise... good for you for taking the time to send that reply. I hope it hits someone there.