Karen confuses O for a zero but yet it’s my fault

So I work in a call centre for people putting their number plates in to an automated system and paying for their parking. I took the misfortune of answering a call and the customer was a woman going absolutely ballistic at me because she’d paid for parking but had been given a ticket. I looked up get file and explained to her the following;

“Ma’am; I can see that you did in fact pay for your parking but when the parking attendant has checked your registration number it would appear to him that you didn’t have a valid parking session because instead of putting your number plate in the following format – I.e AB1 zero CDE you have put AB1’O’ CDE. You can appeal the ticket with the county council that have issued your ticket with email confirmation as proof that you did pay and they will understand the error and refund you.”

Well of course, to this Karen this wasn’t good enough.

“No! I did not make this error! I TOLD YOUR AUTOMATED SYSTEM MY REG!”

  • to which I replied “the automated system is exactly that, and it would have repeated the number plate back to you, it cannot differentiate between where an O should be a zero because where some drivers have personalised plates if we adapted the software it would confuse the digits for those drivers.”


“Ma’am I’m terribly sorry but we simply process the payments on behalf of the county council and if I attempted to appeal the ticket on your behalf they would automatically decline based on data protection and it not being you who is requesting the appeal.”


As it was all of the managers were in a meeting so I explained this and it got worse. “WELL, I’m not paying the ticket.”

“Ma’am, I have to advise you that if you do not pay the ticket and you do not appeal the ticket the fine will double and the county council may prosecute for that, and I would strongly advise you to appeal the ticket with the council.”


“I have explained to you that I am not permitted to appeal your ticket. We simply process payments on behalf of the council, we did not issue the ticket so we cannot appeal it.”

Well now she got really mad, “GET ME A MANAGER NOW!”

I explained again that the managers were in a meeting and offered her a call back as I did have a queue of other calls.

“NO! I’ll sit here and wait!” “You could be waiting in excess of an hour?” “Fine!”

So I put her on hold. Thirty minutes later a supervisor appeared and I grabbed him and explained to him what the problem was. He laughed and said “put her through to me.”

The following conversation made me laugh because this guy is so laid back it’s water off a ducks back.

“Hi there, my names Dave, I understand you wanted to speak to a manager but there are none available at the moment; I am a senior supervisor and happy to try and assist you.”

“I WANTED A MANAGER!! What’s your name?”

“As I just told you, I’m Dave and there are no other managers available.”

He then proceeded to have the exact same conversation with her that I’d had and when he got to the end I wanted to hug him.

“I’m not going to allow you to continue speaking to me or my staff in that manner, or to continue taking up valuable calls for other customers. I will have a manager call you back.” HE THEN HUNG UP ! my hero!

A manager did call her back a short time later, and she started by saying “My names Lara and I’m a manager here at ABC customer service. What can I do for you?” The customer then told her she’d filed an appeal with the council as I’d first suggested she do, to which the manager smirked, “well have a LOVELY day then, goodbye!”

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