Saturday, 10 May 2008

Customer Service?

So there we are, doing the shopping at the local Spinney's. (If you are not from the UAE, that is a chain of supermarkets here). So, Mrs DB and I have filled the trolley, queued up along with all the other heavily laden trolleys, had our goods scanned through and let the bank pay for the lot when I suddenly realise that we have forgotten the fish. The fishmonger was cleaning some prawns for us and we'd forgotten to pick them up.

Leaving the trolley with Mrs DB, I go back into the store to collect my prawns and a fillet of sole. When I come back to the checkout I decide to go to the less than 10 items till 'cos there is only one person there and it makes more sense than queueing up behind someone with the best part of a thousand dirhams worth of groceries in her trolley.

The guy in front of me is having his stuff scanned when up walks a Customer Services lady - let's call her Tess. Whilst the checkout lady is scanning the guys stuff, Tess turns the key on the till and starts zapping buttons (presumably to collect some kind of data - the till seems to object to having to do two things at once and the checkout lady gets a bit confused and me and the guy wait while they try to sort it out. Eventually Tess turns the key back and lets the checkout operator continue scanning the guys goods.

He finishes and pays and Tess immediately leaps at the till again and turns the key and starts banging away on the keys - no excuse me, no sorry, no do you mind waiting - nothing. Now, I don't know what she was doing, but there is no-one behind me in the queue and I have got two items - some prawns and some sole you may recall. After five minutes or so I gave up, dumped the prawns and sole on the belt, said "I won't bother", and walked out. Did Tess (the Customer Service lady) react? No, she just carried on playing with the till and, as far as I am aware the prawns and sole are still there!

As anyone who has been in Dubai for a while will tell you, customer service has gone down hill over the last few years. Spinney's once had excellent customer service, their staff were friendly and couldn't do enough to help the customers - it doesn't seem to be the case any more.

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