Too dependant on technology

Today was one of those days that my regular supplier will want to forget.
The overnight automated ordering system crashed because of the Internet.
When phoning for technical support, the telephone system went down, AT THE TECHNICAL SUPPORT.
Then the distributor found that the collated buying requests weren’t any more and requests for one item came in from 100 retailers and not as a single bulk buy.
That slowed everything up and the goods arrived late in the morning.
Only the stock control FORGOT where half of the shelves were.
That meant the staff couldn’t unpack the 30 tonnes of pallets and restock.
Then the telephones went quiet.
Yep, dead exchange lines but it didn’t stop customers coming in for orders they thought would be there.
Only the shop knew nothing about these on line orders (remember the Internet down?)
But the staff also couldn’t pick things as the computerised inventory had lost half of the shelves. That left the local knowledge of the staff to find stuff and manually record what they had taken.

Not enough hurt?
The gremlins thought no and killed off the point of sale computers and the card readers. As for taking cash? It was the office girls day off and no one knew how to run a manual ledger. Goods, quantity, pricing and with no computer they had to resort to the sales catalogue. As for applying a  trade discount? Never in the field of electronics have so many calculators run so hard for so long.

3 pm (15 h) and their worst nightmare happens.
No, not a total loss of electricity as they could have closed up.
I arrived.

I wanted just one thing.
I knew the price and the stock code of my regular purchase so off went my favourite little store man to find it.
No automated pick and deliver system today.
5 minutes later he arrives with tiny box in hand sweating profusely.
Paying by card.
Whoops, the card readers were up and down, still ‘we’ managed it.
Invoice? Typed on a blank headed form, typo’s and all.
Except for the address, that came off the ONLY computer still working.
Type in the post code (zip code) and there I wasn’t.
Type in the address into the search? No
Type in the surname? No.
Type in the phone number? No
Type in the email? YES!!!!! and a little cheer went up!

I almost got though the door feeling happy and like a valued customer.
Only as I got to the door, one of the long-suffering waiting engineers said “If you can do it for him, you can do it for me”.

For a few days I’m staying clear of this particular supplier.
It might take that long to mop up the blood.

What’s the German car makers boast?
Forward though technology?Vorsprung durch Technik.
Not today Heinnie, not today!


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