Wednesday, September 5, 2012

I hate it when I make silly mistakes

I get this call today from the credit controller of one of our major (and most hated!) suppliers.  She asked me to send her a remittance advice for a payment I made to them last week.  Silly billy I think of her, I always send my remittance advices – what is she talking about.  Then she tells me the amount and I think, hang on I didn’t pay that amount to them, I paid …that …. to  … oh dear I didn’t do what I think I did?
Yep.  Turns out that I did.  I paid the wrong supplier.  I am kicking myself as usually I am ever so careful and rarely make these mistakes.  I am like a very good carpenter – I always measure twice and cut once – or in my case check twice and pay once.  I don’t know what happened this day, but obviously I was not thinking right.
Never mind, it’s happened to me before, but the other way around.  A customer pays me when they should have paid someone else and it’s no biggy, we have a laugh, they give me their bank account details and I send them the refund.  It wasn’t my money at all.
BUT.  This supplier is, excuse the French, is a branleur … a great big branleur (look it up if you don’t know French!) 
This is their reply to me :
Unfortunately, we do not process refund for our terms account.
I suggest that you use this payment to pay the open invoices in your account and whatever is left can also be used for forthcoming invoices.
This was my response.(well not my first response. My first one had a lot of grown-up words about telling them to go forth and multiply – in a very loud voice that scared the dog)
That’s not good at all.  I need that payment for another supplier. 
So you are telling me that if I make an incorrect payment to your account in error it’s just too bad?
To which she bravely responded:
I understand your situation.
Let me get back to you, I will talk to my Boss if we can accommodate the refund since this was intended for a different company.
Also, our refund takes 2 weeks or more to be processed. Not sure if you can wait that  long..
The dog (and all the neighbours dogs), is still cowering under the desk after my second outburst.  Now if this was a few hundred dollars, no big deal, even a few thousand I could cope with.  But we are talking $19K.
I feel so bad.  So silly and bad and cross!
On the plus side, the supplier who I was supposed to pay is being very understanding.  She had a laugh with/at me and I promised to pay as soon as I could. 
Now, at the risk of being ‘racist’ as the PC police call you these days when you say anything like I am about to say, the difference between the branleur supplier and all my other suppliers is that the branleur one is based in the Philippines and all the others are Aussie.  These companies that operate offshore are always so hard, and annoying to do business with.  I hate them. 
If I had my way, I would tell the branleur company to go branleur itself.
Ok, sorry, my rant is over, but I feel a little better.  Thanks Blog (and Blog People)


  1. Well I have just learnt a very useful word in French - I now have many thoughts I where I can use this word. Yes I did have to look it up.

    I have done a similar thing, know exactly where you are coming from.

  2. Oh shit! Those cheeky buggers they had better pay you back pronto why should it sit in their account making interest. Good luck hope you get it sorted.

  3. Don't they know that all this going backwards and forwards is a waste of your time and theirs? I do not understand why some companies make business so difficult!

  4. Well today is another day Tara. Still no resolution, but have escalation! Thanks for the comments ... helps to share :-)

  5. I feel edumahcated now ;o)

    Don't even talk to me about doing business with companies in the Philippines. It's all red tape, curt responses, attitude and government corruption *sigh*

    I got a USD$750 'fee' to amend the spelling on a document for AUD$100 worth of stationery I sent there >:o( Then there's all the boxes that get opened and have things 'disappear' out of them.