Thursday, June 14, 2007

The insider


I was perusing the new comments this morning, when I was delighted to happen across one from someone claiming to be a First Great Western employee. Amazingly, this member of the Customer Service staff said he (or she) had no idea that the company was so hated. Clearly, we have not been complaining loudly enough, or making our grievances known to the right people. So, what should we do about this?
Well, for a start, continue to order your "I Hate First Great Western" badges (just e-mail me, the address is on the right hand side of the blog) and wear them prominently when your train is delayed, full-to-bursting, or cancelled. Make sure you complain in writing at least twice, every time there is a serious problem. And, e-mail your complaints about the company's service directly to Alison Forster, the FGW Managing Director: alison.forster@firstgroup.com.
But also, if you are that FGW employee, please come back again and take part in our discussions, so we can find out more about why FGW makes the lives of its customers such a misery - are they simply unaware of how horrendous the commuter's life is, don't they care, or it just that they're not very good at running a train service? I'd be fascinated to know more about things from your point of view.
And, if you are someone high up in First Great Western, reading this blog, get in touch! All we're asking for is a reasonable service, some perks for paying a fortune for a season ticket, and the feeling that when we scream, someone's listening. Are you out there? Hello?

3 comments:

Billyo said...

There is another employee, who goes by the name of Whistleblower, who is, I think a guard who has come by my blog (and more train less strain) occasionally.

I think (s)he was a former Wessex employee. They are not great fans of FGW either:

http://billyosstressrelief.blogspot.com/2007/04/wear-them-with-pride.html

whistleblower said...

Ah! That'll be me then. I've got a handful of blogs and sites that I have a surf round every few days to see what's happening. As Billyo says I'm a clippie on the old Wessex region so I was in the midst of the rough and tumble of the new timetable/fares strike round the Bath and Bristol area. The reason I started posting was that front-line staff were starting to get some abuse as we were the only visible part of the Company. I thought that I could use my inside knowledge to give a balanced view of what was happening and try to deflect some of the aggression. And also to let you know that we felt the same as you about the crap service we have to deliver. Well, not quite the same - we get paid for it - but you know what I mean!

I'm a frequent visitor to this site because I love your attitude and the way you write but I haven't commented because I don't work the area.

Here's a bit of brand new insider stuff as a contribution (but I can't guarantee it's veracity). Allegedly, all customer complaints to FGW are now being forwarded to the ombudsman as part of a last chance check to see if improvements are happening. If true, then this is your chance to really make your comments count.

I hate FGW said...

That is indeed very interesting, and I'd like to know if our insider can confirm this.
I shall certainly be complaining again if the cheque I've been promised doesn't arrive soon. It's only £12.00 but it's MY £12.00, and I want it back. I'll leave it the standard 28 days, but after that I'll be kicking up a right old stink. I'll try to make it entertaining, so if the poor old ombudsman is reading it, it might brighten up what must be a horribly dull job, reading page after page of people's moans.