Customer Experiences Superior UPS Service, Then Heart Attack

The last UPS delivery I received was hurled at high speed out of the moving van window and into my gutter like Henry Huggins chucking a daily on a newspaper route. Unfortunately, it was my MacBook Pro.

But I’m not the only one who’s had issues with UPS: from delayed service, stolen packages and delivery men in tight shorts that horrifically accentuate their junk, everyone’s had a problem with them.

Luckily, sometimes random chance in a godless universe causes the spheres to align and a balanced equinox of truly excellent service between UPS home office and remarkably competent delivery guy comes into being. Laura recently experience such an equinox, and she was kind enough to email us about it. It’s after the jump.

I know you want to hear the good as well as the bad, and I had an amazing customer service experience with UPS this morning.

I am expecting two packages from two different sources, both to be delivered by UPS. My faithful UPS guy, Raul, arrives at my house at about 2 PM in the afternoon. Unfortunately, I leave for work at noon, so getting packages I have to sign for often involves driving to the main UPS distribution center in downtown Los Angeles to pick them up – a 20 minute drive each way in light traffic.

One package was already on the truck to be delivered today, Wednesday, and the other is scheduled for delivery on Friday. Since I really want this Friday package before the holiday weekend, I attempted what I thought was a clever arrangement. I would have them hold the Wednesday package, and then pick both up on Friday morning, necessitating only one freeway trip to downtown L.A.

I called UPS customer service and reached a human by clearly enunciating “I want to speak to a customer service representative” when I reached the voice activated system. This is not a menu choice they offer, but I took a chance and received the recorded response “I am transferring you to the next available customer service representative.”

I was immediately (!) put through to a real person – no waiting on hold. I explained my temporal problems, giving her both tracking numbers. She told me she’d put it into the system, and they’d contact me if there was a problem. She was friendly and acted like a human being.

About an hour later the phone rang. It was Lindy from my local UPS office. She suggested an alternate solution to driving to downtown L.A. – I could meet my local UPS guy 3 blocks from my house in 1/2 an hour and get my package before I left for work, and I could make the same arrangement directly with him for Friday. She sent him a message and called me back in about 20 minutes with the go ahead.

Leaping into my car, I sped the 3 1/2 blocks to a back alley behind a car dealership in Santa Monica, where I got my package off the back of the UPS truck. When I asked Raul, the driver, about doing the same thing on Friday morning, he gave me his cell phone number to contact him directly. (Raul, who has had the same route for 16 years, recognized me and remembered my delivery history.)

So, a pain-free avoidance of the CSR robot-voice, and then productive interaction with three efficient, human, corporate employees who went out of their way to cheerfully help me, and to ease my interactions with them in the future. For just a brief moment, I felt that I had entered an alternate universe, and life in corporate America was good.