Looking at a copy of the letter I sent Rogers back on Launch Day, Tuesday July 28th, I see I wrote: "What is Rogers prepared to do make amends if our recordings are indeed permanently lost? A few of us have suggestions. I do not wish to speak to a customer service manager, who will perhaps appease ME, on a 1-on-1-basis - I'd like to know that all affected Rogers customers are equally "valued" ".
Evidently, and as I feared - that is not how things ended up.
Personally, we've been customers for 7 years, ever since Rogers purchased and swallowed up the family-run Aurora Cable Internet company and took over our account. I believe what I got last week has absolutely nothing to do with our longevity or loyalty and everything to do with how well I put together my arguments, countered theirs and escalated when I did not accept the excuses/explanations I was given by the first-line-of-defence staff. I never once started negotiations, it was always them saying, "here's what I'll do for you.." and then it was game on from there! It may have also helped that I didn't scream or shout, or use profanities.
What I was eventually offered and immediately accepted was exactly double what my file will have indicated when prior negotiations (with another person) ended a few days earlier. And I didn't even request anything of value, just that he take action and pass on my message.
As for why did Rogers choose to negotiate 1 on 1? On paper, It's more cost effective.
I have no idea of the actual numbers, but using the nice round number of 1000 affected customers as an example.. :
Scale that up or down, tweak the numbers a bit up or down - same difference.. they chose the most cost-effective method of damage control. Most cost-effective short-term, anyhow. Who knows how many were insulted by the offer, accepted it anyway to save them time/stress and then started exploring alternative options?
I find 3 things about this whole ordeal very sad. The first is based on the Ellen Roseman article in the Toronto Star where, by using the phrase "human error", Rogers seems to be suggesting that customers could be at fault for losing their recordings. Those recordings were all there until Rogers attempted an ill-advised update. The lost recordings have nothing to do with the customer and everything to do with Rogers.
Secondly, Rogers appears to be headed in the direction of providing this update to everyone - once the bugs are supposedly fixed. They have stated this quite clearly on their Facebook page. Does anyone really believe that Rogers can fix these bugs? I see the scenario where some bugs might be fixed but in fixing those, others might be created. I see this dragging on for months and months on end with Rogers doing nothing much more than "apologizing for the inconvenience" - the most widely used expression from a Rogers rep!
Finally, I would just like to ask WHY! Why is Navigatr so important that you have to go ahead with it? Why is Navigatr not being cancelled based on the total negative experience of the customers who have received the update so far? Why does Rogers not use this as a public relations and goodwill tool and simply cancel it and revert back to the guide that was working? It seems to me that if Rogers did this (admitted their failure, accepted responsibilty, and listened to their customers), they could prevent a lot of customers from leaving Rogers!
Absolutely agree with everything you said, @JohhnyRockets (I did just write a whole lot more about kickbacks, assuming the software was purchased from a third-party company, but then I realised the language I used would get the post "rejected".)
Regardless of how many agree with me, I doubt that Rogers will and they will continue with this all-advised update much to the chagrin of their many customers! Too bad - they could have created a huge amount of goodwill by cancelling this update and rolling it back for those that have received it!
@JohhnyRockets This is so well said. Very eloquent and right to the point and issues at hand.
To say that this was human error is like suggesting that when there is a recall on an unsafe issue with a car of safety device, that it was human error to have used the car, or the stroller that was unsafe.
Human error in programming is when we didn't take precautionary steps that were provided to us and are industry standard, such as backup before installing an update occurs, although Microsoft can be set to install automatically, but they build in rollbacks. Good practice is to always have updates unless something goes wrong. We have no way to backup or rollback in this case, so we are totally dependent upon Rogers to get it right the first time.
In this case, the poor users who lost their movies, or had unpredicable behaviour from the box, are not making human errors, they are just using their boxes. Rogers has yet to take serious responsibility for all that has happened, and it is only in response to Ellen Roseman did they give a sort of answer, that implies that the user made an error "It was human error in using – or navigating – the new system." Oh you mean because they used it or navigated (that is what is designed for isn't it?) that means it is a human error.
I would agree, human error on the side of thorough testing and poor design. Is Roger's even able to replicate this so users could actually undertand what happened? Did the Roger's rep seriously think about what he was saying and understand the implication of how his words would be interpreted.
See the following link: Also in Ellen's article: http://www.rogers.com/web/support/tv/nextbox/9087
I am personally tired of the same scripted phrases - "we apologize for the inconvience", "we have listened to you", and the new one on the support page in response to most of the issues we have raised. "We’re always working on improving your TV experience, so keep checking back for more updates."
And the other priceless one about fonts "
Options to change your font and background aren’t available right now, but we’re always working hard to try and improve your TV experience. We’ve done a ton of research to improve the user interface of your NextBox, but we understand the changes might be hard to get used to."
I guess that is also the other message - we just have to get used to change.
A ton of research - what does that mean - I want to know how much testing and user feedback was done, and if they had done research, they could have viewed the international standards for User Interface font type and size, for example see: http://www.textmatters.com/resources/pdfs/visImpd_typogTM.pdf where they say in the first line "The choice of typeface is less important than contrast, type size, weight and the spacing of characters." Guess they didn't do the same research I did in two minutes on Google.
I also wonder if they have read and understand the AODA - what the implications of saying the response of saying changes might be hard to get used to. If someone says that due to their visual acuity, these fonts are unreadable, the company has a legal and moral imperative to accommodate the wishes of the user of your services. It is why since I do have a disability that when they say how can I help you, I immediately advise them of my disabilities and how to accomodate, and I did tell them that the font was too small and that I am dealing with visual acuity issues as I adapt to my corrections from my cataract surgury. Text is a challenge for me still, and I do have to learn to live with my disability, but I can expect that companies will respect the needs of all those who have visual acuity issues and accommodate them, because it is not creating undue hardship on them to do it (that is a legal term by the way under the Human Right's Code)
I could say more, but as with others, I want honest answers, acknowledgement that they made a large number of errors in this rollout, and I honestly find it hard to beleive that "tons of research" and testing was done.
In my years of introducing large scale changes to systems, I have never seen a mess like this one, accept when the implementation team was pushed against a dealine and not enough time was spent with developing consistency, testing every feature set that has had a code change, and doing a comprehensive a comprehensive testing with a broad range of users, and then developing detailed step by step instruction on how to use the information.
But as has been pointed out by others, I did my own search of Cisco, and they have no full documentation on the current user interface. What is also of interest is that RTN stands for Cisco Reference TV Navigator (RTN). Is the change to Navigatr a spelling error as some suggest, a new marketing strategy to move away from Cisco, or a new name from the new owners, or did Rogers go out and try to recode the original versions with RTN programmers outside of Cisco. Or were they backed up against a deadline.
Because no one from Rogers will explain what happened, some have said it is confidential, we are left to draw conclusions to try to understand what happened. This leads to frustration and anger and difficulty with communication when we do get to talk to someone. Instead of fully answering us, they move to compensation, when all we really want is well designed software and to enjoy our services. We don't want to make these calls, or keep writing to forums, customer concerns, or chats.
Some honesty and upfront answers would allow me to see if I have confidence moving forward that this mess won't happen again. It is nice to see that Cisco is getting out of the business. I have worked with Cisco for decades on the networking side, and always worried when they went into this side of the business. True we are ultimately moving to IPTV, as stated in Cisco documentation, that the 9800 series is the stepping stone to IPTV, so it would be logical that they would try this business out, but do they really understand users, and I have to wonder if Rogers understands their users either.
I am not typically this cynical, but I have completely lost trust and faith in this company. I continue to await to see what happens with the billing cycle (just read about a person on another thread who had a real mess after his two bills showed up two months late), my own is late again, after being assured that I would see my bill within 2 days and no I don't need any trouble shooting as I helped guide Rogers in fixing these problems. I understand the strengths and limitations of the billing system far better than I would ever have wanted to. I await with others seeing how One number will go in the near future, and I hope my bill does not have the repeated errors of roaming that the backend staff have caught intermittently and I have had to make three calls to correct these in the last 5 months. And the final straw was dealing with a change in value paks that was poorly explained, and then being told that there is no way to go back to the old plan. It seems that Rogers is very determined that they want us all to get on the new models, and if they miscommunicate to us and we make a decision without full disclosure or sometimes incorrect disclosure of the impact, that they have designed the system so that there is no way to correct their own errors (buyer beware is my advise when ever they suggest that they have something that may be beneficial to us). I await the upgrades to see how it goes, how the roll-out to others goes and will say again, I don't appreciate being an unasked beta tester, as that is what we became.
And no, this user never made any user errors, in fact, I like others have identified every thing that is illogical, not easier or faster as marketed, does not make our viewing pleasure better and needs to be changed from our point of view, and those things that are clearly bugs which Rogers has yet to publically acknowledge (like the sort does not save).
We see acknowledgement on their support page of most of these, basically saying that we just have to learn to get used to it, or the other infamous phrase found in the following and most of those clear bugs, that they don't admit to, they just give us the inconvienent workarounds, and never do mention what doesn't work.
"How can I filter my recordings?
You can now manage recordings by pressing the C button on your remote and filtering by alphabetical order or by recording date. We’re always working on improving your TV experience, so keep checking back for more updates."
- Oops, forgot to mention, don't try to save it by pushing save, because it won't work!
Or the following:
"Is it possible to see the dates of recorded programs in the list?
With the Navigatr guide, you can open each recording to see the date and time of the recoded show. We’re always working on improving your TV experience so keep checking back for more updates."
-What we hear is that the ease of finding information in the previous model has been completely removed, and we now have to dig through tiles, and open each show or recording to find the date. Take a look at the documentation for the previous version and see just how inconvient this model is in comparison to the older one. We have said a number of times, do a version by version comparison and assess just how more difficult it is to do a lot of things. I will acknowledge that some things are more efficient and easier and faster, but the problems far outweigh it and the good things get forgotten - we are only human.
So it seems that this is their indirect way of showing us how to do it and acknowledging that it is not easier or faster, and they are working to improve our TV experience.
So add one more marketing script to the many others that don't acknowledge or deal directly with our concerns, nor answer directly our questions.
Time will tell. Bring on the next upgrade and best of luck to the Nextbox 2.0 with the rollout tomorrow. Let us all know how it goes.
Sincerely from a frustrated long term customer who just wants to user my services in a predictable manner, have Rogers acknowledge when they have made errors and not make me "fight" to get it corrected, to have CSR's be able to take ownership of problems and have Rogers trust them to make the best decisions when errors occur, as they will, and not require me to constantly have to escalate because the system as designed gives them so little power to do anything and be able to receive bills that represent my use accurately and to pay these. That is really all I want and ask for, but I am unfortunately losing my faith that Rogers can do this reliability. I wish I trusted the others to do better.
And the saga continues.
Here is a value statement from the AODA web site:
What is accessibility? It simply means giving people of all abilities opportunities to participate fully in everyday life.
Telling someone that a font size or background contrast is something you need to get used to, doesn't meet this framework.
Your post is far more eloquent than mine! Not to mention that you hit every nail on the head! I wish Rogers could at least hit one nail on the head and get it right!
Finally, I would just like to ask WHY!
Rogers isn't stupid. They have done a horrible job of rolling out this product, but they aren't stupid. The answer to WHY is all business, and probably not something they are ready to publicize. They are probably testing NB4 in the lab and NB5 is probably in specification. This is very likely the software needed to support new hardware platforms and new functionality. Think 4K TV, IoT, and so on. It's too bad they didn't spend more time working on the GUI to make it more accessible, user friendly, and efficient, but these are things that they can still do, if they so choose. It's quite possible that the software is being outsourced offshore, which could be one of the reasons why it's rough. Let's hope they get it together and get this mess sorted out. We were really getting to like the NB3, until they botched the new software.
This early morning update that was supposed to happen today? What's their excuse for it not happening yet going to be this time? All their other updates usually happen early AM, and nothing yet. At least, not according to my still messed up PVR.
Just had Rogers Helps Twitter account tell me that "The rollout of the Navigatr update has been delayed. I do not have an update for the next phase.' Of course!!
@park wrote: "Curious if Rogers offers higher comps for newer customers as 20+ year ones are less likely to leave ?"
Hhm, good question. Or do they reward loyal customers more? Hard to say, and I'm not sure even Rogers knows 🙂
Long time customers are probably too set in their ways to jump ship and lose their bundle discounts and grandfathered stuff.