Retailer takes remedial actions after employee inappropriately texted customer

Early resolved case summary #2015-02

October 26, 2015


Lessons Learned

Complaint summary

An individual purchased a product from a retailer, to be delivered at her home. Shortly after the delivery, the retailer’s deliveryperson sent a text message to the individual on her cell phone. In the customer’s opinion, the delivery person made inappropriate comments to her during their brief exchange of text messages.

The customer retained a record of the exchange and reported the incident to the retailer’s customer service department, seeking action against the deliveryperson. 

She claimed that the manager assigned to her complaint showed a lack of concern given the seriousness of the matter. As well, she claimed being stonewalled when asking the manager for information she needed to escalate her complaint.

As the individual had the impression the retailer would not do anything about what she considered to be inappropriate conduct and an invasion of her privacy, she complained to our Office.

Our inquiries revealed that the deliveryperson had obtained the customer’s phone number from his work phone assigned to him by his employer. Since his work phone was not functioning properly the day of the complainant’s delivery, he transferred the customer’s phone number to his personal phone, which he used to contact the customer.

The retailer assured our Office that it disapproves of employees transferring customer information to personal devices. As a result of this incident, the retailer now requires delivery employees to return immediately to the warehouse upon discovering that their work phone is faulty.

Outcome

Our Office worked with the retailer to resolve this complaint. For example, it shared with us the disciplinary actions it had taken against its deliveryperson. Also, as a result of this incident, the retailer provided mandatory privacy re-training to its employees who have access to customer information. During the training, employees were re-acquainted with the company’s customer privacy policy. The re-training was completed within a month after we contacted the retailer. The company president also personally met with the customer affected by the incident.

The customer was satisfied with the actions taken by the retailer as a result of her complaint to our Office.

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