Jeremy Darroch is the Chief Executive of Sky plc. Here is the email I wrote to him last week.
I hope it’s a nice Sunday morning where you are. The email headline says it all, really, but let me go into a few details for you. We decided to move and as soon as we had exchanged contracts, I got in touch with Sky to arrange tv, phone and internet as we were moving from West London to rural Lincolnshire. We really need to have access to a phone as I have secondary cancer, Stage IV. That’s the one you don’t recover from, in case you don’t know. But you possibly do know people who have or have had cancer which makes the actions of your teams even more shocking.
So, the services were ordered on 2nd March and appointments were arranged for 13th March – one for the phone and broadband and one for the tv. When the tv engineer arrived – a nice man called Mark who really does your company credit – he expressed surprise at the phone appointment and advised us to call in. Now, here’s the difficulty. Mobile service is very patchy and even when you get service, it’s likely to drop out. So I called and spoke to someone who said “I’ll put you on hold” which he did and then never came back. I rang again and spoke to a pleasant Scottish lady who I explained my situation to. She said there had been ‘a delay’ and that I could check online to see when things would be resolved. I explained we are in an area where mobile and dongle services are iffy. I asked if she would try and call me on Monday 16th to tell me what was happening at which point, of course, we lost service and it was the end of the afternoon. (I have faith in people doing what they say they will do so didn’t start worrying until around 3pm).
I thought I would alert Sky Customer Help Team. Really, Jeremy, they should be re-named; it is so inappropriate. You can only use a few words on Twitter, as you know. I directed them to my blog, Tangling with Cancer, so they could see I was not messing about and to try and exert a little pressure. Their responses were just directing me back to the people I had unsuccessfully spoken to on Friday. No help whatsoever.
My situation is this. I have incurable cancer and have treatment every 3 weeks to keep it at bay. I nearly died in September due to a toxic reaction to a particular kind of chemotherapy which damaged my heart and it’s taken me a long time to recover physically from the treatment, let alone deal with the effects of the cancer. We have moved to a rural village to breathe fresh air and for a better quality of life. The one thing I really, really need is access to a reliable means of communication ie a phone. If I spike a temperature overnight or can’t breathe well, I need to be able to call an ambulance or a doctor. Actually, speaking of doctors, that’s another problem Sky has given me. The plan was to go and register with a GP on Monday. This is now not possible as we will have to wait at home to see if Sky are going to do anything about the phone or not. I don’t know if anyone is going to arrive to deal with it because no-one has told me. But, back to the plot. I need access to a phone as I explained. My husband has parents who are aged 88 and 90 who live in Hampshire. Their only means of communication is a phone so should anything happen to them…. you can fill in the dots but it might be some time before we found out which would leave them frightened, upset and confused. My husband is an only child and his mum had a TIA a couple of weeks ago so we worry about them anyway.
The big question is – what are you going to do about it? I hope you’re not going to shrug it off like your Customer Help Team (and really consider a name change for them, I urge you). Would this service be good enough for someone you love? No, and it’s not good enough for me, either. I am classed as a vulnerable person because of my disability, not because I want to be but because that’s the hand life has dealt me.
Please get it sorted. I would be very grateful. And you can find my blog, Tangling With Cancer, by clicking the wordpress link below. You should give it a read. Thousands of people seem to enjoy it and last time I counted it was in 49 countries. At the moment, Sky doesn’t come out too well.