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Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 10,646
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Registered: 01-09-2007

Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

I haven't heard anything for the last couple of days...
I looked at my last bill (paid) with an invoice date of 05/05/10, it contains an entry
"Premium charge for the period 25-04-2010 to 24-05-2010" -- WRONG!!!
I raised a ticket - which was promptly answered!
Quote
Dear Mr Boden,
Thank you for your query.
I would like to apologise for the error with our billing system and any problems this has caused. For some reason that we cannot identify right away, the billing dates have changed without any outside input.
The invoice that has been changed to 25/05/10 is still due on the system and at this time we can't change this. The system is also showing an invoice due on 05/06/10 but we have cancelled this so there will be no charge for June.
We are expecting the system to revert to normal so that the invoices will then fall on the 5th of the month, back to how it should be. If there are any further problems please let us know and we will escalate this to the developers to investigate.

[My emphasis]
In case anyone at PN Towers is interested the ticket number is 33407049.
I've replied that "expecting" is not reasonable - it looks like they are "expecting" it to direct debit my bank account a couple of weeks early on 25/05/10, instead of 05/06/10.
For some reason that we cannot identify right away, the billing dates have changed without any outside input.
That sounds a really scary thing to say about your accounting system - especially to an end-user!
Help!

10 REPLIES
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
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Registered: 27-04-2007

Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

It looks like we should have gone into more detail here. At the moment we there is a problem (that may or may not be related to the billing issue) which is stopping us from being able to view your account's full history. To cut a long story short we need to see this as it will most likely reveal why there has been change of invoice date.
Problem 61064 is already open on our side and your details have been added to get this rectified. We've not seen any other reports of randomly changing invoice dates like this at all so at the moment we can't account for why the billing has happened when it has as we need the aforementioned problem closed first. I can understand full any lack of faith given this problem but I have no reason to believe that your next bill won't be processed correctly and on the correct date.
Please bear with us on this one until we can tell you more (which we will) in the meantime I'll educate the person who replied to your ticket about checking for and raising problems as they could have been much more informative.
If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
VileReynard
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Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

Thanks Adam,
Can you ensure that no DD is taken on the 25th May?
I find your reply (in some respects) to be a cause for concern.
It seems that you have no audit trail and/or data is modified by one-off methods outside your accounting system.
But I will have to wait and see. Smiley

VileReynard
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Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

Received:-
Quote
We are pleased to be able to inform you that a member of our Customer Support
Centre has now escalated your Question [number  33407049 ]
for further investigation.
The following comment was added to the Question
Dear Mr Boden,
Thank you for getting back to us.
Due to the on-going issue in our billing system I am unable to re-instate the
invoice scheduled for 05/06/2010, or to cancel the invoice dated 25/05/2001.
However, I can assure you that we are looking into the issue and hope to have it
resolved as soon as possible. I can also assure you that we will apply credits to
your account to cover the double paid period.
Please accept our apologies for the on-going inconvenience you has suffered.

I assume this means that PN plan to take money early, then take it again, then (with luck) refund the money (sometime) that they shouldn't have taken?
Even though I gave them a weeks notice of a potential billing problem I just happened to notice?
If this happens, I shall be interested to note exactly what concrete form the "apologies for the on-going inconvenience you has suffered" actually take?
An accounting system which doesn't allow the manual cancellation of invoices isn't worth having.
I notice that this problem doesn't appear as a "priority" issue - I suppose that's because BT's next year-end isn't until 31/03/2011 Sad

Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 12,760
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Registered: 27-04-2007

Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

No problem,
The honest answer to
Quote
Can you ensure that no DD is taken on the 25th May?
is no, but there is nothing pointing towards this happening again. I will do some further checks with the finance team tomorrow with a view to gaining you more of an assurance on this matter.
Your account like all others does have an audit trail which due to to problem 61064 is not visible at present, I'm concerned it may reveal a log of the invoice date being changed (in error) which is what I suspect may have happened in your case.
Please bear with us for now and I'll keep pushing back where I can to shed some more light on this.
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 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
VileReynard
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Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

Just like http://community.plus.net/forum/index.php/topic,86180.0.html ?
How did your talk with the accounting team go today (Friday)?
Accounts don't normally like to work weekends. Cheesy

Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
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Registered: 27-04-2007

Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

Morning,
Sorry for not letting you know up to now, finance were able to assure me that no payment would be cleared today and upon checking your account today no direct debit has been submitted so we're confident that your next bill will clear on 05/06/2010 as planned.
Re problem 61064, that is still under investigation at the moment. We'll do our best to keep you up to date on this.
If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
VileReynard
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Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

Thanks for the update. Smiley

Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
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Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

No problem,
No update on problem 61064 yet I'm afraid but I'll keep you posted.
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 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Staff
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Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

Good afternoon,
I've just been having a chat about your account and the oddness of the billing date moving to the 25th and it's now correct. Your next bill is due on the 5th and your billing periods are as they should be again.
If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Chris Parr
 Plusnet Staff
VileReynard
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Re: Broadband hit by weird accounting system!!!

I've already been informed by accounts that all seemed well - but they were keeping a close eye on my account.
However, I retain the distinct impression that no-one at PN knows how their accounting systems actually work.
I never used to check my individual invoices previously (and PN have never taken money in error -yet!).
However, I shall check each month in future.