AT&T is the Worst

I have been dealing with AT&T for various billing problems on our home phone, Internet, and now cell phone since February of this year.  I don't know if you've heard, but they have terrible customer service.  It seems like no one there knows their head from their butt.  And their web site is useless.  You pretty much have to have a different login for every account you have with them.  I thought I would treat you to my most recent email exchange with them. 

Here is my first message to them after failing at accessing our most recent bill for home phone/cell phone online.  I am enrolled in paperless billing which was obviously a mistake in hindsight.

I am commenting on your company's poor customer service.  I made the mistake of switching our home phone and Internet to AT&T in February of this year and I have had nothing but problems ever since.  Either me or my husband have to call just about every month due to billing errors and general disorganization on your part.  I can never get the assistance I need online, and every phone call requires AT LEAST 20 minutes of waiting on hold before getting to speak to anyone.  If you want to actually do a better job of serving your customers, you need to rethink how you handle incoming calls and online account access.  There is no reason I should have to have 15 log in names and passwords to access all of my AT&T accounts.  I should not have to ask to speak with a manager every time I call.  If I can't remember one of the many log ins I need to check my bill online, then I should not have to call you and wait on hold just to get it resolved.  I am close to cancelling all of my AT&T accounts.

I sent that through their online message system because AT&T really doesn't want to talk to you or get emails from you, so they make it a test of strength and wills to get ahold of an actual person on the phone and they only give you 4"x6" text box to tell them about whatever issue you may be having online.  I pretty much just sent that as a virtual middle finger after dealing with their usual nonsense 3 days ago.

Then today (after being promised via email that someone would follow up with me in 24-48 hours mind you) I get an email from David.  I am sure David is a nice fellow and it is unfortunate that he works for such a crappy organization.  In fact, I will say this--everyone I have spoken with up there has been nice and polite.  They have been inept and useless, but at least they weren't rude while accomplishing nothing.  Here is what David has to say:

Thank you for your email regarding Account Manager.  I apologize for the inconvenience you have experienced.  I will be happy to assist you with your inquiry.

I reached your answering machine at XXXXXX and voicemail at XXXXXXX.  Please reply to this email and describe the problem that you are currently having with the online account for XXXXXXX.  We can investigate and troubleshoot.

We do not see a passcode on the account in our billing system.  For security purposes and protection of your private information, I need you to reply back with one of the following items before I can help:
- Customer Code (three-digit number that follows your area code and telephone number at the top of your phone bill)
- Amount of your last bill
- Amount of your last payment

Thank you for using AT&T.  We appreciate your business and continued loyalty.


Your AT&T Customer Service Representative

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That's right folks.  In order to help me see my bill, David needs me to give him information FROM MY BILL! AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH! (That is maniacal laughter, FYI). 

Well, luckily, I know how much the bill was for because of the email notification I got 3 days ago, which prompted this whole thing, so I guess I do have that.  So here is my response:


Based on the billing notification email I received a couple of days ago, the amount of my most recent bill is $304.31.  I wanted to actually see the details of this bill, which is what prompted me to attempt to login to my account. 

I am able to log in to my cell phone account, but of course, since it is now linked up with my home phone account, I can get no information there.  I do not know what the login is for my home phone account, although your online account access system indicates that I have created a login and password for it.  However, when I try to use the online tools provided to retrieve my login information, I am advised that my issue cannot be resolved online and am then directed to a sort of Q & A type troubleshooting page which does nothing at all to help me other than to eventually reroute me back to the page designed to assist those who do not know what their login information is.  Since I started there in the first place, I see that I am not going to be able to accomplish anything on your web site.

In frustration which is all too common when I deal with any aspect of my accounts and billing through AT&T, I call the customer service line.  The automated message indicates that I can request my most recent 3 bills on this account, so I go through the steps to receive the most recent bill only to be told that due to technical difficulties or system error or some other nonsense, my request could not be processed at this time.  Holding to speak to an actual person, the recording tells me, will take at least 10 minutes due to unusually high call volume (I might suggest you remove the word "unusually" from that outgoing message as it is an outright lie.  Waiting on hold when calling AT&T customer service ALWAYS entails a wait of at least 20 minutes.  Either no one is answering the phone or I am one of many customers having problems with your company.  I am inclined to believe the latter.)

Like most people, I have a job.  I have a family.  I do not have to time to spend dealing with the same problems from the same company every single month.  I don't have the time to deal with new problems either and frankly, even if I did have the time, why would I want to?

Let me tell you what I consider good service and perhaps you can pass this on to your management.  If I pay for a service, I expect my billing to be correct, every month.  I expect to receive my product as agreed upon, when agreed upon, and I expect, if there ever is an issue, I can actually talk to someone in a timely fashion to get it resolved.     

To be quite honest, the only reason AT&T still has my business is because it is difficult, if not impossible to find other companies that service my geographic area for high speed Internet and home phone.  I have had my cell phone with you for years, with few problems until recently but am researching my options for a new provider for that service as well. 

So, David, if you could be so kind as to send me a detailed copy of my most recent bill for $304.31 and take me off of paperless billing so that I do not have to deal with this problem again, I would appreciate it. 

Thank you in advance for your prompt and courteous attention to this matter.

I used to work in customer service for an insurance company, guys.  I know it's a hard job so I really do feel for these people who have to help me.  I try very hard to be nice to them---you know, the old flies, honey, vinegar thing.  But jeez.  I don't tolerate ridiculousness very well. 


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