Shady Directv Sales Practices (1 Viewer)

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Jam3s

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Pro
May 24, 2008
158
12
For the past couple of years, I've been working as a retail salesperson and installer for a local company. We do directv, dish, verizon, office supplies, and whatever else. I was gone on Active Duty military for the last year or so, and during that time, my manager developed a gray practice of creating email accounts in the customer's name and then proceeding to register them online for rebates and directv online and all of that jazz. More often than not, this is beneficial to both us and the customer, as most of our customers don't even own computers, and if they did, they'd be unable to figure out the directv process. At the same time, though, I think that if directv ever found out, we'd probably lose our ability to sell their product. And occasionally, we get a savvy customer that wants to manage their account online, and we have to give them their "email address" and password.

Honestly, I really didn't think there was too much wrong with this until we had an inicident, which got to really ponder on the issue. We had a customer come in angry a few weeks back because he didn't get his rebate, even though he was holding the rebate slip that came with the bill in fat hands. No problem, I just resolved the issue, set him up online (again, with a fake email address), submitted the rebate, and sent him on his way.

But not three weeks later, a guy calls up irate as can be because he hasn't gotten his rebate and its been three months. What's worse, they've been billing his credit card every month for his tv! So my manager finds the registration form, and wouldn't you believe that he checked the "Automatic Billing" box. Problem was that my name was on this paper as the sales rep. I think it was a slow sales month and my commissions were a little low, so someone else put my name down to make the numbers even, usually happens. So my manager checks online, and an account had been made from here, but we didn't submit the rebate, the idiot that called in sent in the form, and it was processing; it will be in in 4-6 weeks.

So now it is automatically my fault for not submitting these two customer's rebates, and my manager is pissed at me. He poses the question "Do you think it is our responsibility to make sure the customers get their rebates?" And instantly, I realize that it isn't, and it never was. Its a "you can lead a horse to water" kind of situation. The funny thing is that I answered "no", and he decided to tell me that he's making it our responsibility now. I'm not sure, but I think what we're doing could be illegal.

My question, I guess, is what should I do? Should I ignore it and just make sure we don't have any more "incidents". Should I talk to my manager further? Should I inform directv? I get a feeling that if I bring the issue up to management, I might be risking losing my job. If I tell directv, I know I'll lose my job. But honestly, I don't feel too well about the situation anymore.
 
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harshness

SatelliteGuys Master
May 5, 2007
16,739
2,797
Salem, OR
You titled this thread as if this is a problem with DIRECTV business practices. It doesn't sound like DIRECTV has anything to do with it.
 

sean321

SatelliteGuys Family
Jan 6, 2010
37
0
Des Moines
Your right this is a gray area. Dtv's online rebate is a pain in the ass. Having installed DTV for a couple of years there have been countless times I had to sit down with the customer at their computer and help them complete the process. My company has recently started emailing customers to remind them to complete this with detailed instructions as well as writing a letter to them to remind them. If DTV decided to get there head out of there ass they would automatically give it to new customers like Dish Network does. This obviously isn't going to happen. I have DTV at home but through installing both I have found that Dish is much easier to work with then DTV in my opinion. For the benefit of your customers I would probably ignore this situation.
 

camo

SatelliteGuys Pro
Feb 11, 2010
882
326
Nebraska
I just did my rebate online being a new subscriber. Was not that hard to do but had to search for the rebate area. I can see where new customers that sign up would not have any idea they needed to apply for the discount 24-29 dollar month rate. Surprised it's not instant, even after applying it says allow 6-8 weeks.
 
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Happy Camper

SatelliteGuys Pro
Jul 20, 2005
264
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Central Texas
Your boss should be in jail. What he is doing is illegal. Report it to the local police and get out of there, or you will be joining your cheating boss in jail.

Finding another job is no picnic, but it beats being in jail and paying for lawyers.
 

Jimbo

SatelliteGuys Master
Lifetime Supporter
Jul 14, 2005
63,989
4,270
NW Ohio - Buckeye Country
Your right this is a gray area. Dtv's online rebate is a pain in the ass. Having installed DTV for a couple of years there have been countless times I had to sit down with the customer at their computer and help them complete the process. My company has recently started emailing customers to remind them to complete this with detailed instructions as well as writing a letter to them to remind them. If DTV decided to get there head out of there ass they would automatically give it to new customers like Dish Network does. This obviously isn't going to happen. I have DTV at home but through installing both I have found that Dish is much easier to work with then DTV in my opinion. For the benefit of your customers I would probably ignore this situation.

There was talk awhile back that they were going to be crediting the rebate on thier account, StoneCold might have more info on rebates ...

You asked why D* does it the way they do ..... they make money on it ... if the sub fails to file, D* doesn't have to pay out the rebate money.

OP,
My personal opinion about all this , it's the sub's responsibility to fill out the info if they want the rebate.
Period.
 

GailLA

SatelliteGuys Family
Apr 6, 2009
80
0
Northern CA
I'd be your nightmare. If I found out that you had created an email account in my name anywhere, I'd report it to the email service (I assume you are using yahoo, hotmail or something similar, but I'd be able to find whoever hosted the email addy and report it).

Second I'd report the created email address and account to DirecTV. This is so wrong on so many levels. If you can't take the time to walk the customer through this with their full knowledge and permission, you shouldn't be doing this at all. Sooner or later you will have a customer who is savvy enough to figure out they want to access their online account and also savvy enough to know that you don't create an email address for someone else.

I'm sorry you are in this tough place. It is hard when the boss requires you to do something you shouldn't and your job is on the line in this tough economy. Sooner or later this will all blow up. I hope it is your boss and not you who has to pay the consequences.
 

Jimbo

SatelliteGuys Master
Lifetime Supporter
Jul 14, 2005
63,989
4,270
NW Ohio - Buckeye Country
There was talk awhile back that they were going to be crediting the rebate on thier account, StoneCold might have more info on rebates ...

You asked why D* does it the way they do ..... they make money on it ... if the sub fails to file, D* doesn't have to pay out the rebate money.

OP,
My personal opinion about all this , it's the sub's responsibility to fill out the info if they want the rebate.
Period.

I'd be your nightmare. If I found out that you had created an email account in my name anywhere, I'd report it to the email service (I assume you are using yahoo, hotmail or something similar, but I'd be able to find whoever hosted the email addy and report it).

Second I'd report the created email address and account to DirecTV. This is so wrong on so many levels. If you can't take the time to walk the customer through this with their full knowledge and permission, you shouldn't be doing this at all. Sooner or later you will have a customer who is savvy enough to figure out they want to access their online account and also savvy enough to know that you don't create an email address for someone else.

I'm sorry you are in this tough place. It is hard when the boss requires you to do something you shouldn't and your job is on the line in this tough economy. Sooner or later this will all blow up. I hope it is your boss and not you who has to pay the consequences.

I also agree with the views posted here.
I would never allow someone to set up an email without me knowing about it.
It would be different if the sub told you they didn't know how to do this, could you help, but this is NOT the case here.
 

Jimbo

SatelliteGuys Master
Lifetime Supporter
Jul 14, 2005
63,989
4,270
NW Ohio - Buckeye Country
Then again, if you didn't know about it, how could you stop them? :D

I suppose till you tried to set up your own, you would not know, but if I DID find out, there would be holy hell to pay.

I would probably return anything I bought at that place and never go back .... and let anyone in the place KNOW at the door or in the place.

Also possibly report them as well, depending on how long I decided to be pissed.
 
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