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Dan Linstedt

Bill Inmon has given me this wonderful opportunity to blog on his behalf. I like to cover everything from DW2.0 to integration to data modeling, including ETL/ELT, SOA, Master Data Management, Unstructured Data, DW and BI. Currently I am working on ways to create dynamic data warehouses, push-button architectures, and automated generation of common data models. You can find me at Denver University where I participate on an academic advisory board for Masters Students in I.T. I can't wait to hear from you in the comments of my blog entries. Thank-you, and all the best; Dan Linstedt http://www.COBICC.com, danL@danLinstedt.com

About the author >

Cofounder of Genesee Academy, RapidACE, and BetterDataModel.com, Daniel Linstedt is an internationally known expert in data warehousing, business intelligence, analytics, very large data warehousing (VLDW), OLTP and performance and tuning. He has been the lead technical architect on enterprise-wide data warehouse projects and refinements for many Fortune 500 companies. Linstedt is an instructor of The Data Warehousing Institute and a featured speaker at industry events. He is a Certified DW2.0 Architect. He has worked with companies including: IBM, Informatica, Ipedo, X-Aware, Netezza, Microsoft, Oracle, Silver Creek Systems, and Teradata.  He is trained in SEI / CMMi Level 5, and is the inventor of The Matrix Methodology, and the Data Vault Data modeling architecture. He has built expert training courses, and trained hundreds of industry professionals, and is the voice of Bill Inmons' Blog on http://www.b-eye-network.com/blogs/linstedt/.

Very interesting conversations I had with Verizon Wireless tonight.  The fact that they insist on charging me over $200 for two cell phones plus an early termination fee of over $100 makes me sick.  Especially after the fact that I had cancelled one of the phones in October 2008, and the other one - I thought I had requested a plan change to $24 a month....  We'll let me tell you that the lack of BI and customer service is alive and well with the big corporations, never mind the small guy, never mind the fact that I've paid them tons of money for the past 10 years, never mind that I've been a loyal customer!

I have to wonder, with all these enterprise data warehouse initiatives, and business intelligence: WHO is really getting "smarter"?  and with all these governance, compliance and accountability questions: WHY don't they disclose all the information they do have in their systems?

Verizon Wireless is taking me for a ride, to the tune of $400.  They are charging me for January and Februrary usages (which bill through to March I was told) when I'm asking today, that they cut the services, and clearly - looking at the bills for the last two months, I made ZERO calls.  Their business intelligence is lacking.  I feel as though the "big-guy" is using their one-sided notes to claim money from me that is unjust and unfair.

Quite honestly, I asked for the phone to be cut in October - but the supervisor swore to me that she couldn't do anything.  Why?  because "she didn't see it in her notes".  Of course she didn't see it in the notes, those notes of the call were taken by a verizon rep in October - who really didn't want to report the fact that a customer (me) wanted to cut services!

So, instead, she continued to use the phrase: "I know what you're going through, I empathize with you..." and on and on she drolled.  Well, empathy doesn't help.  The big corporation is taking me to the cleaners.

I would highly recommend to anyone out there to "beware" of the contracts you sign, as I have no legal recourse against Verizon at this point, and am stuck paying the bill.  I would also recommend to all my readers: itemize your bills carefully, watch every charge.

I honestly thought that because I was "party" to the conversation, and because I was the "customer" that this could be worked out, but nope - they wouldn't budge.   I wonder, just what do these big corporations do for their largest customers when someone from these accounts calls and says: "those charges last month, they were wrong, can you please remove them?"

One of the other pieces I can't stand here is the fact that I was party to the call, both tonight and in October.  My notes differ (my version of the truth) from what their "representative" typed in to their computer.  It's a one-sided story, and by the way, she flat told me there's nothing she can do for me because "the notes on the account did _not_ reflect my request to cancel service in October."  Who's account is this anyway?  Sounds to me like Verizon wants to believe they own this account no matter what.

Does Customer Service, Business Intelligence, and Compliance and Auditability ring true for these big corporations?

The problem is: their business intelligence told the rep NOTHING about my loyalty, to the rep NOTHING about how much money I've paid their company over the life of my account, told them NOTHING about how "good" I was in always paying my bills on-time... Or maybe it did, and she chose to ignore it and read me the riot-script anyway...  At the end of the day, the little guy loses, and the big guy wins.  What kind of world is this?  I'm in this game to HELP people not hurt them, seems the other way around for Verizon.

Anybody else have a "bad BI experience" they want to share?

Dan Linstedt

Posted February 12, 2009 7:00 PM
Permalink | 3 Comments |



I am going through some pain with my broadband provider Chorus/NTL (Dublin,Ireland). It's not as bad as your experience as I don't lose any money. Basically, I get a phone call from one of their sales reps about twice a month trying to upsell me the some stuff over and over again. It got to the stage where I hang up as soon as I get a call from them. This really makes you wonder whether they record customer interaction at all. Surely, they are not applying any data minig models in terms of "What products should be marketed to which prospects". This is a waste of their and my time. Just shows you, that BI is not mainstream yet. The problem is that they have the fastest lines and the competition is as incompetent...

So, "I know what you're going through, I empathize with you"


So, who is your new provider? I have to say, the screen on the new BlackBerry Bold is beautiful:


AT&T has them if you haven't already moved, although after your frustrating story, I'm guessing you already did. :-) Your story is an interesting contrast to companies like Comcast (not traditionally known for their customer service) that are starting to use social networks (e.g. http://twitter.com/comcastcares ) to help out with customers BEFORE problems get big.

I have had about the same experience with Verizon. I ended up getting a business line with Verizon and basically stopped using my personal line. And although I was still a paying Verizon customer, they would do nothing about the extra line...despite my rich customer history locked inside their databases somewhere. At this point, I have no desire to remain a customer and will not hesitate to spread the word about how they treat their "loyal" customers chained to the contract.

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