I realize that over time I should learn my lesson. In some ways I have but in others I keep returning like an abused spouse that is convinced the abuser has changed.

New Wave Communications is the same cable company that decided to run a new line to my house OVER my sidewalk, leave it for a week, and only come properly run the cable after a barrage of phone calls. New Wave Communications is the same cable company who told me for 3 days that their service had nothing to do with our home alarm going off every 20 minutes for nearly 48 hours. After which they admitted they found a flaw in their system and it was causing continual drops in service. They assumed it did not effect our phone system because people had not been making complaints about it.

(Our alarm system is set to go off at the loss of phone lines immediately.)

New Wave Communications is the same cable company that for years operated with Moxi boxes that were no longer in production and could not keep operational boxes in homes. If yours went bad, good luck receiving a replacement. The priority was to put whatever boxes they had into new homes.

Even though we were subscribed to EVERY feature and channel they had, for over a year and a half we were promised we were on a waiting list for an additional Moxi DVR. However, after several calls trying to inquire on a time line I was informed that there was not a waiting list and no record of our multiple request for a box.

I understand the thinking. Why give my family a box that would only increase our monthly bill another $5-$10, especially when our monthly bill was over $200 anyway. They could take that same box and put it in a home that would generate an additional $100 plus a month. I don’t agree, I just understand the logic.  Of course, this is the same company pushing for the adoption of high definition content but only placing DVR’s in homes with a capacity of 10 hours of HD recording.

New Wave Communications is the same company that when finally replacing a damaged HD DVR in my home not only hooked it up through coax to a 65″ HD tv, but did not wait to make sure the signal came through properly.

To be honest, I could go on and on with even more…without addressing the issues that my parents have had, which are as numerous and in some cases even more ignorant.

So why give them money?

Well, we actually made the switch from cable to DirecTV this summer. We left the our internet and phones with New Wave Communications, but had grown tired of the lack of HD content, the lack of ability to record HD programming, and the overall experience. I will absolutely say that from a user experience and customer service experience that it was one of the smartest moves we’ve made.

Home telephone service just isn’t a major concern. I don’t know if the service is good or bad, but it’s fairly priced. The ONLY reason we have the telephone service is for our alarm system to tie in (along with multiple cellular backups). We almost always use cell phones for communications, which is the way the majority of the world goes.

The reasoning for staying with their cable internet is for the speed, because i can assure you it is not for the cost.  We truly get the 10mbps download at our house, unlike most who top out at around 7mbps. 3mbps was the best we could expect with DSL the last time I checked, but admittedly that was over a year ago and now warrants more research. New Wave Communications has also recently launched their 30mbps and 70mbps services, which is where this latest drama has begun.

Ever since the launch their WarpWave service I have wanted to upgrade. The time it takes in uploading the sheer number of image files from a wedding woud be greatly benefited. However, due to my work schedule and New Wave’s availability it’s been several months of trying. This is as much my fault as it is theirs.  Any time I do take vacation time or have scheduled sick time, I try and schedule but the time’s don’t match.

On the morning of the 24th I called in to pay our bill and while on the phone I inquired about scheduling the WarpWave upgrade for the following week since I would be home. The gentleman I spoke with said that my modem needed upgraded (which is something I knew already) but he would schedule the upgrade for the 31st between 3-5. During the conversation we were cutoff and our internet was lost.

Upon calling again I spoke with another person would apologized, confirmed the upgrade appointment, and proceeded to “fix” my internet.

We were once again cut off. This was when I realized that the cutoff’s were due to both our internet AND phone modem’s receiving hardware resets and called back on my cell phone.

This time I spoke to a tech who put me on hold for a considerable amount of time while he tracked down the problem. I am not complaining in the least about the waiting on hold. He needed information to fix the problem and in the end, he fixed it.  Turns out or service was upgraded on a modem that couldn’t use it and in turn gave us no internet.

What he ALSO did was to confirm our upgrade for the 31st from 3-5.

Now I’m finally getting to the issue I’m actually upset about.

The reason I approved the appointment on the 31st was because I knew it would be some time before I could be available on their schedule. Did we have extravagant New Year’s Eve plans? Not at the moment. We had already decided not to go to Chicago. However, upon scheduling  we were basically forced into a basic evening at home with the kids.

Fast forward a week to New Year’s Eve and I’m sitting on the couch waiting…and waiting…and waiting.

At 4:50 I decide to call and I’m informed that not only were they not coming but the work order was put in incorrectly and no one had actually been scheduled to come.

I was upset to say the least. I apologized the the customer service rep and began venting. I’ve worked tech support on the phone before and I knew it wasn’t her fault, but someone was going to hear me out. She said that she would call and try to get someone out to my home that night.

I then proceeded to call the “president’s promise” help line. Which is generally the only way to get things done with this company. I also took the the Twitterverse, where most customer service issues are discussed at this point.

An hour and a half later I received a call from “Brandon” who apologized profusely. He asked when I would be home next week and said he would come after regular hours to ensure that this was made up for. He apologized again and said the work order had been input incorrectly and did not schedule a truck to “roll” on the upgrade.

At this point I’m unhappy, but that’s not why I’m so upset.

This morning I receive a tweet from the @newwaveinsider account.

We left a voicemail on ur home phone on Thurs stating that we would not be able to come out on 12/31 bc our office would be closed.

This is the moment I become livid about this situation.

1. You didn’t decide on Thursday to close the Somerset office on New Year’s Eve. You didn’t. If the office was going to be closed, WHY would you schedule the appointment in the 1st place?

2. I have not received the voicemail. I will admit that I may have missed it. Someone could have accidentally deleted it. Many things could have happened. However, in no way is asking someone to sacrifice their night (let alone New Year’s Eve), canceling and leaving a message with NO confirmation they received it acceptable business.

3. Why in the world does EVERYONE seem to have a different story? Was it because the office was closed? Was it because the work order was put in incorrectly? What was it?

4. Is THIS how you handle customer service?

I make mistakes, that’s why I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt. I eat food that didn’t come as ordered, I let the agitated person at Wal-Mart go 1st because I know how hard the clerk has it, I try to not put the blame on the poor person who took my angry call when it’s not their fault in particular,etc.

I am that way because I understand. However, the most important customer is a current customer. That is not to say that a new customer isn’t important, but your existing customers are the people who have already given you money. They are the ones that will spread the word about your services. It’s a businesses goal to keep them happy.

I have made poor scheduling choices. I’ve scheduled shoots during some of the biggest sporting events of the year. If you are unaware I am a HUGE sports fan. My wife even allowed our wedding to be scheduled around the Colts bye week. I’ve accidentally scheduled photo shoots for times I had no intentions too. Upon realizing it at a later date, what did I do? I went and shot. I didn’t blow them off, I didn’t show up in a bad mood…what I did was deliver what I had promised.

While I’ve rarely cancelled or moved shoots, that too has happened. I have left voice mails with clients, emails, and text messages to that point. However, I don’t consider that official until I have a response from my client. I want to know that they understand that it’s happened, the reason, and we’ve set a new time for both of us. Generally that rescheduled time is less convenient too me, but my clients are priority.

Finally, when I make a big mistake I fall all over myself making it right. Early on we had a miscommunication with a couple. My wife had responded with an older pricing guide to an engaged couple and I was under the impression that they were under our current structure. This wasn’t realized until after the shoot, edit, and presentation. After a bit of discussion I figured out the issue and corrected it. On top of that I sent them a photo book. Why? Because even if the experience wasn’t perfect, I wanted them to see how important it was for me to make them happy. I lost A LOT of money on that shoot, but customers are THE reason we are in business and their satisfaction was a priority.

To me New Wave Communications failed in every aspect of customer service. They didn’t provide what they promised, they failed to communicate (communication is 2 way), and didn’t even bother to offer adjustments to help. I would’ve thought something to the effect of a discounted rate, 70 service for 30 price, etc…but nothing.

In the end, I will absolutely be looking into DSL service while crossing my fingers that my Wednesday service appointment with New Wave is for real.

However, I intend for my dissatisfaction to be heard. That should be obvious from this blog.

The cable service contracts in this area are awarded by the county government. It is my understanding that the contract renewal is coming up in the next year. I also know for a fact that here in Pulaski County that the only person in that small meeting that actually has New Wave Communications providing them services is the Deputy Judge Executive…or as I like to call her, Mom.