A few days ago we had an email from a customer telling us that his parcel had not arrived. He had ordered on 5th December and, after being patient, had decided to write. There was just one problem – the Royal Mail rack and Trace service showed that his parcel had been delivered, and paid for, on 7th December. I wrote and told him this, politely but firmly, and suggested he asked other people in the house, or his neighbours, if they had accepted it on his behalf. We have several of these every month. They take up time, they sometimes involve argument, but eBay finds in our favour because if there is a signature they consider we have done our duty. I didn’t cover this in my moaning as I considered it settled.
We heard nothing for a couple of days, and today had a reply. He now concedes that he has had the parcel but claims one of the items is missing.
This is not very credible. Even without the first email it would seem unlikely, but allied to the first one, it’s looking like a definite attempt at fraud.
We know the weights of the three items and we know the weight of the package, because the Pot Office, thoughtfully, prints the weight on the receipt. A bit of simple maths leads to the conclusion that all three items were in the parcel when it was posted, and as there was no complaint at the time, it would seem likely that three arrived. Then there is the postage method – we used Guaranteed because of the value of the three items. If there had just been two we would have used Signed For postage. All of this points to one conclusion – he got the parcel, he got the three items and he is not being completely truthful.
There may be another explanation, a confused elderly gent, a larcenous neighbour or a rogue postman, but the simplest solution is usually the best. This is what has come down to us as “Occam’s Razor“, even though it seems to have little to do with Occam.
This would make an excellent Christie short story if you could manufacture a Murder….
After a week working with my toxic co-worker a murder is definitely on the cards! 🙂
And in the Occam is usually right. (Or his wife isn’t happy with the money he has spent and is making it uncomfortable for him.) Or you need to give a few examples on your website and tell all purchasers that you won’t accept their bulldust anymore.
Yes, that’s another possible scenario. We try to keep the internet sales pages upbeat and hope the sales this generates makes up, for the problems.
Good record keeping helps, and it sounds like you have done that.
Sometimes we get it right by accident. 🙂
I didn’t know that the PO records the weight of a parcel. That must be useful in your line of business. Judging by myself, the confused elderly gentleman would be a very possible view of the matter.
Yes, it came in handy today. It is always a good thing to bear in mind that I m not far off confusion myself. 🙂
It is a recognition of the fact that we have laws about defamation and an increasing population of ambulance-chasing slimeball lawyers in the country who will go to court like an American if they seee the possibility of a win. 🙂
“Not being completely truthful” is most circumspect