One of these days I expect modern technology will become so advanced that you’ll be able to fix any wrangle with your supplier by, say, plugging your smart phone into your supplier’s website and shouting: “There, the pair of you, get together and Sort It Out!”
Meanwhile, I’m still getting feedback on Menzies’ move to an 0844 telephone number (one size doesn’t suit all) and its solutions: ie i-menzies and a phone app. So rather than hanging on the phone for ages you can do your returns in a few clicks.
Ali Seedat, who runs Fountain News in Leeds, says the i-Menzies website works fine, although some less internet-savvy retailers might need a bit of training. He can do all his orders, returns, standing orders and so on - albeit a little slowly at times. So sometimes more clunk than click.
“They seem to keep doing updates at the wrong time.” (He’s not alone in claiming that the site is slow, but maybe these updates will improve it.)
And he finds the phone app very handy. “But there is a cautionary tale,” he adds. “The downside of it is that if you ask for a re-supply (because you didn’t get it the first time) you get charged twice. For example, I asked for six copies of The Times, which I needed for home delivery. It only took 60 seconds to order them and they were sent out quickly, but then I got charged twice. Then you have to claim it back from the website.”
Can’t you claim it back using this quick and clever app, I wondered?
“No, not yet,” says Ali.
He avows that the problem of having to claim credits after asking for re-supplies, to make up for short supplies, is nothing new.
“It’s been like that for decades. I think their returns depot must be Menzies’ biggest profit-maker.”
So, despite all the whizz-bang technology, some things never change.