Wednesday, 10 December 2008

Telstra magic...pulling bills out of a hat

This is a photograph of Telstra's CEO in the act of conjuring up my latest bill.

How I love Telstra! All those memories of dialling their service centres, choosing from those exciting automated telephone options and being disconnected from their queues. I'm so pleased I'm one of their valued customers. Imagine how boring it would be not to be valued by Telstra and just in receipt of their standard rather than their valued service?

Some years ago I 'bundled' my Telstra services to take advantage of the discounts they offered under those arrangements. Apparently they could afford to offer the discounts in part because of administrative savings through 'bundling' my accounts and bills. I eagerly awaited the first of these 'bundled' bills, waiting expectantly for one jumbo bill to replace the separate bills I had been receiving for years.

A lot of time passed before the first of those bills arrived. Actually years passed by without such a bill. Well, let me speak plainly, no such bill arrived.

I thought I would telephone Telstra to enquire just when I could expect my first 'bundled' bill. I know that I really just wanted an excuse to try out their telephone service centres again. After all it had been a while since I had experienced the excitement of choosing which enquiry option I wanted and of course I really wanted to spend countless hours listening to thrilling music, interspersed with Telstra messages until it was time for my place in the queue to be disconnected. As it happens, I had one of those rare chance opportunities and was connected to a service operator who informed me that whilst my services were 'bundled' Telstra had not yet found a way to actually 'bundle' my bill. Thus I was reassured that I was in receipt of the best service that Telstra could offer.

Then a few weeks ago I received correspondence from Telstra informing me that I would soon receive an exciting new bill with an even more exciting new account number to cover my 'bundled' services. Sure enough, a few weeks later a new bill arrived by email and as promised it did contain a new account number. I could scarcely contain my excitement as I logged on to the Internet to pay this 'bundled' bill through BPay and what a little surprise Telstra had in store for me. My 'bundled' bill was linked to separate customer reference numbers covering sub parts of the account. How convenient! I made separate BPay entries for each customer reference number to pay the 'bundled' bill. Effectively nothing had changed.

And Telstra had still another little surprise. In the mail yesterday was a paper bill from Telstra duplicating the email bill it had sent me earlier. My 'bundled' email bill had given birth to an identical 'bundled' paper bill.

As I I love Telstra.


  1. Just imagine how impressive their service would be if they treated customers like shit and ignored the progress their competitors were making in terms of service, billing and customer relations... Oh, hang on a minute...

  2. You're a hoot! I worked in the late 80s when they were still Telecom. "Hello, what number please.. and the number you are calling from..... I have a reverse charge call from Victor in Sydney. Will you accept the call and pay the charges... Go ahead please. lol

  3. Kezza - how could I move to a competitor when Telstra provides me with hours and hours of entertainment?

    FireHorse - that looks so sexy, did you use a breathy Marilyn Monroe voice on the job?

  4. Experienced similar Victor. Eventually everything went on to one bill. It used to amuse me that the only utilities bill that I could not pay with Bpay, was my internet bill, then later, it was the only one that changed payment numbers every number to pay the bill. I am happy enough now, but I expect given your experience, I am about to be unhappy.

  5. "FireHorse - that looks so sexy, did you use a breathy Marilyn Monroe voice on the job?" No but there were queens that worked there that spoke in a nasal tone and with a slight lisp. God love 'em.