16 April 2010

In the Same Boat

A few weeks ago, I received an email from someone who just recently purchased a house from Avida. Maxi had been searching online for feedback regarding their customer service and found this blog.

What he read made him and and an officemate (who also purchased a house and lot from the same village) quite worried. Especially since he received a letter from Avida informing him of the on-going construction but he didn't see anything that matched the report when he last visited the site.

Due to their concerns, Avida arranged to meet with them in Greenbelt for lunch.

Can I just make a comment before I continue? We never received a letter from Avida informing us of construction updates. We had to find things out by ourselves through numerous phone calls and getting passed on from one person to another. And for all our issues, they have NEVER offered lunch.

I asked Maxi to send me a recap of their lunch meeting and here's his email in full:

Hi Nicole,

I met Mr. Noel and his staff Ellen at Greenbelt 1 during my lunch break. I was really furious to see them without my Account Manager. Maybe I expected too much - as a business practice the Account Manager should be present on such meeting right?

Anyway, we started with their internal process issues; turtle slow development, account manager issues, broken promises, update issues, no reply on text messages and phone calls. Good thing I didn’t order anything that will accelerate high blood or else I’ll be dead at the restaurant.

My friend also raised his documentation issues. His CTS was missing however he was able to get his DOA. Ellen was also curious on the report and promised that she will investigate on this matter. Another promise :-)

I reported everything to them and kept on reiterating the value of customer experience. I believe something hit them and they appreciated my boldness in saying the truth right on their face. They even asked me if they can get my name and become one of the official members of the homeowners association. I almost laughed and fainted in disbelief! Are they really serious in meeting me?

Anyway, I asked them if they read your blog and browsed your painful experience with Avida. They confirmed they read it and can’t believe it happened to one of their customers. I told Ellen that I read her name on the blog and she confirmed that she knew you as well. She told me that they already have a schedule to meet you. Are you aware of this? Don’t forget to bring your pen, they might ask for your autograph :-)

I escalated so many issues and told them that customers should be treated well, commitments should be delivered, and communication should be open.

I asked them about the mysterious progress of your neighbor and if there were special arrangements for such treatment. To my surprise, there are no special arrangements and it’s their regular routine. According to them, the delay of your house construction is due to shortage of materials because of some technology patent issues :-) Were you made aware of this?

Our conversation lasted for almost 2 hours and they gave assurance that my concerns will be discussed internally, improvement will be made, the account manager who handled me will be dealt with accordingly, delays will not be encountered, they will be transparent by sending regular updates, and the customer care manager will closely monitor the progress of my house and lot. Before we parted, they asked me if they can invite me as one of their speakers for giving them inspiration and motivation. I told them yes, and make sure to reserve the front seat to the account manager who handled me.

After reading this, I was not only laughing so hard but thought it incredible that Avida thinks they can just say anything and people will swallow it hook, line and sinker. Gullible are we? I think not. My full reaction to follow - I'm trying to shorten everything to fit just one page...


Maxi said...

My family will visit the site tomorrow morning to check the progress of the "construction". Ill send you my updates and hopefully we can post it here.

It so unbelievable, the meeting didn't materialized?

Tsk tsk tsk..

Nicole said...

Nope, I have not heard a word from them. Not even to tell me that the house will be late again. I spoke with the contractor a few days ago and he told me that it will take a least another month before the house will be finished.

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