Call centre blues

I need to add a new signatory to a bank mandate. It’s a task to be completed before I can stand down from my volunteer treasurer role. It seems straightforward, easy enough to start the process online.

I go through the necessary hurdles to log on to the account. A message: we can’t do this online right now, call this number. I call the number. An immediate response. It’s not a person, it’s a recorded menu; I choose option 1. The music kicks in, a steady adrenaline inducing rhythm. No indication of how many are ahead of me in the queue. The occasional interruption of a recorded voice thanking me for waiting.

Forty minutes later, I can take no more. I hang up, wondering if it was nearly my turn.

I leave it a few days before I try again. Another immediate response. I remember it’s not real, select option 1, brace myself against the music. Twenty minutes pass. A real person offers to help me.

I pass the security tests. I congratulate myself on retrieving a texted code without inadvertently ending the call and returning to the back of the queue.

I explain my requirements. Casper, the friendly call handler, works through the process online. It takes another forty minutes to complete the forms and explain the next steps. He takes his time, makes sure he gets it right. I’m grateful for his time and patience. I thank him, and realise that his undivided attention is the reward for a long wait.

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