In the interests of CANI (Constant And Never-ending Improvement) I submit the following for your information.
Many months ago I joined Bartercard Australia in an attempt to rejuvenate my flagging business. A short time later I received a voucher for $100 partially, I thought, to compensate me for a bad experience with a merchant who refused to provide me with an advertised service, and partially as an incentive to new traders.
I used this voucher with another new merchant so we both could benefit and I was very happy.
Due to circumstances beyond my control – my finances imploded on a grand scale and I was unable to continue to pay the monthly fee – I found it necessary to resign from the Bartercard organisation.
Even though I had only been a member a short time and they were surprised and disappointed, Bartercard appeared to accept the situation.
However, just the other day I received a very short and, I thought terse, letter from Bartercard Australia informing me that the voucher I had used was not going to be honoured and had been returned to the merchant. Now this is approximately 4 months or more after the service had been provided. I was happy with the service and I imagine the merchant was too. And at least as far as I know so was Bartercard.
What is the reason for this?
It appears we (both merchant and customer) are being punished for something. Not sure what. Nor why. Perhaps the merchant knows? I certainly don't
A reason might be nice. And as a parent you are always told to ensure that any punishment fitted the crime, and was close in time to the event being punished so the punishee knew what it was all about.
None of this appears to have happened. Bartercard Australia seems to have just decided it was not going to honour a legally issued voucher which had been swapped for a properly advertised and satisfactorily provided service. Go figure.
Now our honest merchant is out of pocket, and quite probably has no way of contacting me to ask for payment.
If I was less than honest and not of moral standing I'd ignore this, but I am not. When I have the money to pay him, which now as a pensioner is not very likely, I will pay.
But my questions are:
- What was wrong?
- Who was at fault?
Was this because I was forced to resign?
Why did Bartercard just make this apparently unilateral decision?
Why did it take so long for anything to happen?
Does this mean that any voucher is completely useless?
Why would we bother to use one in future?
What does this say about the whole Bartercard system?
Is a promise from this company just a waste of time?
Is this whole Bartercard voucher deal just a scam?
There is no failure – only feedback. So I present this not as a complaint, nor as an indication of failure, but as feedback; an attempt to understand for myself what has happened; to help Bartercard get it right; and to assist others who might use this system and/or these vouchers to figure out that the usually expected outcome may be dependant on circumstances that do not become apparent, if ever, for many months.
Looking for an improvement suggestion, Bartercard? Here is one. Remember CANI.