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North American Van Lines

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Re: Avoid Allen and Coles -- North American agent

Postby Fred0844 » Mon Aug 08, 2005 3:28 am

you have personally achieved is truly remarkable

Beats what the cable TV man can do " we will be there sometime on Tuesday". The problem is that the public has become used to being delayed by service industries as being the way things are.
a doctor's office is different in that often people will be booked for 1 problem and it turns out to be something completely different -- even a life threatening emergency.

Sorry but there is basically no difference. A service failure occurred because an event beyond the service provider's control occurred which changed the service provider's ability to keep commitments to other consumers. A doctor can decide to make appointments in say 20 minute intervals instead of 15 but that would cut down his profit by 40 appointments a week. A medical emergency is handled in an emergency room of a hospital, not in a doctor's waiting room. Any delay in any service can cause ripple effects down the line, you just don't see them.
Diane, you still fail to grasp the major differences between a full service mover and BE or, you do not want to. You have now admitted that you are promoting services of specific carriers behind the scenes of this site
using information that you are privy to.
I've started telling people (privately)
. While you appear to be open on the record, what else are you doing "behind the scenes".
Where do you get the authority to tell people
Code: Select all
to prepare for a 21-day delivery spread during the summer if they're going with a full-service mover
.
Fred0844
 

Re: Avoid Allen and Coles -- North American agent

Postby Nancy » Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:00 am

Tyrone, there are delay penalties for moves with major van lines, just as there are with construction companies.

Diane, you are correct that Allen & Coles shouldn't be completely avoided due to one incident. As well as NAVL. They've done thousands of moves this year, and I believe two have been posted here as being delayed. Failure happens! However, you often support agent's selfhauling orders. I just wanted to point out that is part of the failure on that Atlas shipment from CA to VA. They were being self hauled by Atlantic when the truck broke down in Arizona, and only Atlantic's fleet was looked upon for a replacement truck. If it had been a regular Atlast shipment, they would have had that whole fleet to scan for a replacement truck. I don't support the notion of COD consumers asking for self hauled shipments, you don't get the support of the whole van line.
Nancy
 
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Re: Avoid Allen and Coles -- North American agent

Postby Diane » Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:35 am

Thanks for that comment, Nancy. I also had been thinking about the self-haul issue with regard to Jody's move from CA to VA. I had been somewhat confused because this is what she just posted about the trucks:
Jody wrote:Apparently, the original plan was for us to be shipped on an Atlantic Relocation Systems truck, and the only way Atlas was willing to pick up our load on the new truck was if Atlantic Re Sy got us to agree to new dates. Someone conveniently recorded that we had "agreed."
- On Friday a new load was added at the last minute to the truck we're on - the new load was loaded Fri and will be delivered BEFORE ours. Apparently this occurred b/c according to the new delivery dates in the system, adding that load didn't delay ours. - http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5041

So are you saying that the new truck was also supplied by Atlantic Relocation rather than by the van line? I was confused because of what I have put in bold above, which seems to say that "Atlas" is picking up her load in a new truck.

Anyway, I appreciate your pointing out the possible drawbacks of a self-haul. I'm not sure why Atlantic Relocation wanted to haul it themselves in the first place. The $9808 quote seemed to me very low for the 12,900 tonnage although Ruges thought it might be OK.

Fred0844 wrote:A medical emergency is handled in an emergency room of a hospital, not in a doctor's waiting room.

As a matter of fact, medical emergencies do turn up in doctors' waiting rooms and the physician has to deal with them. Getting someone transferred to an ER takes time and Ophelia is correct that it can cause delays for patients scheduled subsequently. But this isn't (yet) a medical discussion board. :wink:

Fred0844 wrote:While you appear to be open on the record, what else are you doing "behind the scenes".
Where do you get the authority . . .

I do plenty behind the scenes, probably like most of the volunteers here. Sometimes people don't want to post their issues on the open board for a variety of reasons. If you're curious, the last two companies that I recommended to someone were Andy's Transfer (NAVL) and Beverly Hills Transfer (Allied). But I have no "authority" whatsoever when it comes to things like that, and people don't have to follow my advice.

However, getting back to Allen and Coles, in my capacity as a moderator I'm going to remove the word "Avoid" from the topic heading because I think it unfairly disparages this company. If Google picks up the topic heading, it could impact the company's business for months. I hope this is OK with the person who started this thread.
Diane
 
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Re: Allen and Coles -- North American agent

Postby Nancy » Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:51 am

Diane, On the Atlas issue, it sounds to me like Atlas corporate didn't want to be subject to paying out a delay claim because the agent's truck broke down. So the corporate office told the agent to negotiate a new set of dates, and then they would take over the shipment. They never promised dates in the first place, so they don't want to be held to the agency's self haul promises.

The agent takes on that responsibility when they self haul, so the corporate fleet wanted that clarified before they took over the shipment. For example, with claims, if a shipment is self hauled, that agency settles the claims. So why do a self haul and nulify the involvement of the corporate entity -- in this case being Atlas Van Lines corporate. It's like choosing a smaller, independent mover. It can be perfectly fine, but then you are only getting the benefit of the agency (and what they can offer), and not the corporate entity.
Nancy
 
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Avoid North American Van Lines this summer

Postby ophelia11 » Mon Aug 08, 2005 3:07 pm

Once again, Diane, you are right.
I agree with removing Allen and Coles from the heading. They have been trying to be as helpful as possible, but apparently, the problem is at the central level. They have been calling the central office on my behalf multiple times with no reply back. They are sending me one of my boxes with my study materials so as to ease that burden. Unfortnately, the employees that customers have access to have no authority or power to solve the problem. So, the problem is higher up. And that is where I will go. I am sending a certified letter to the president of North American.
It has been 11 days since I moved and they don't have a driver assigned yet. So August 16 (19 days after I moved) is not looking very realistic.
ophelia11
 

Re: Allen and Coles -- North American agent

Postby ophelia11 » Mon Aug 08, 2005 3:18 pm

Diane,
Can you remove Allen and Coles from the subject completely?

There have been many others affected by service delays from North American this summer. Only 2 complaints may be on this site, but the entire country doesn't know about this site!! Once again, the president and vice presidents are who customers need to contact. They are the ones that are overselling their services by lying about delivery dates and they are the ones that are making the big profits.
ophelia11
 

Re: Allen and Coles -- North American agent

Postby Nancy » Mon Aug 08, 2005 3:22 pm

Yep, we've seen complaints about delays from Allied, Atlas, United and NorthAmerican this summer. Every major van line has them, and not everyone has the ability to move themselves and avoid these things. NorthAmerican is a publicly held company, so I wouldn't say their president and vice president are the ones making all the profits from missed deliveries. The shareholders are doing quite well too.
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Re: Allen and Coles -- North American agent

Postby ophelia11 » Mon Aug 08, 2005 3:28 pm

Yes, but the shareholders aren't running the company.
The presidents and vice presidents are.
Goodness, I need to do something other than be on this website and on the phone all day long.
ophelia11
 

Re: North American Van Lines

Postby ophelia11 » Mon Aug 08, 2005 4:20 pm

Update:
Just spoke with a woman who said she was "Assistant to the President" .
She was unhelpful but did acknowledge that my shipment might not make it by Aug 16 (19 days from my move). She also acknowledged that North American overbooked and that they do not have enough drivers. I mentioned that it might be because they don't pay their drivers enough and she agreed to that as well. So, they are essentially lying to customers in their sales pitch. She seemed non-plussed with the idea of a lawsuit. I am to send my lawyer's letter to her. I am thinking that the amount of profit they make by overbooking far exceeds the occasional lawsuit.
I will talk to a few more higher ups if I can. Then, if I can't get anywhere, I might consider contacting a national news show (Dateline or equivalent) and suing (class action anyone?) I am sensing that I am now on a mission to expose this situation to as much of the American public as possible so that we can institute a change in the moving industry.
ophelia11
 

Re: Allen and Coles -- North American agent

Postby Nancy » Mon Aug 08, 2005 4:29 pm

A class action lawsuit for your shipment being 6 days past it's delivery spread? When the company will pay for a hotel room and food costs? It's not like they are ignoring you or holding your goods hostage for additional monies. Yes, they are totally overbooked, just like every moving company in the country right now.

You posted earlier that you have an important exam to study for. I'd encourage you to focus your energies on that, it's something you have some control over. The company has told you they are working on the delivery, trust them and it will get there.
Nancy
 
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Re: Allen and Coles -- North American agent

Postby Ruges » Mon Aug 08, 2005 4:46 pm

ophelia11 wrote:Once again, the president and vice presidents are who customers need to contact.


Acually it is the driver you need to talk to. He is the only one who can get your furnature there. Granted in some cases there might not be a driver asigned to it. And if they tell you there is no driver assigned to it. Then you need to ask them how do they know when your stuff is going tobe delivered if there is no driver assigned to it.
Ruges
Ruges
 
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Re: North American Van Lines

Postby Diane » Mon Aug 08, 2005 9:45 pm

Ophelia,

I was wondering where you're moving from and to. I know that Allen and Coles has several locations. Is this a cross-country move?

I decided to keep the topic heading general rather than adopt your suggestion of "Avoid North American Van Lines." This is partly for the reason that Nancy gave (the problem isn't unique to NAVL) and partly because I think that to say "Avoid" is too strong for the situation.

The moving industry has many problems, but I agree with Nancy that people involved in it are doing the best they can. The fact that they got your box out of the shipment to send to you in advance (if they did) definitely shows good faith. Frankly I've never heard of such a thing. Also, the question of overbooking is a tricky one, and I wouldn't be too sure that NAVL intentionally overbooked. Lots of times it's hard to get a handle on capacity, and unanticipated problems like truck breakdowns can impact shipments far and wide. I would think that any profits the van line might make from overbooking would be more than cancelled out by the bad feeling created by delivery delays.

I may get flak for saying this, but I personally believe that the moving industry is not very well run, and that accounts for a lot of its problems. The industry was started mainly by immigrants with very limited education. A journalist named John Hess who wrote a book in 1971 commented that at that time, some moving companies didn't even have a handle on their revenue and costs. For example, many were making most of their money from storage and spending most of their money on moving household goods, but they didn't even realize it. Even today, I've read on moving forums that many owners are running their companies exactly the way their fathers did, with no innovation taking place and a lot of inefficiency being perpetuated. The people who post on those forums admit it themselves.

I think that lack of adequate laws to protect consumers, and lack of enforcement of those laws, is part of the problem too. Because scammers infest the Internet giving lowball quotes with impunity, many customers (not you) are conditioned to think that prices should be unrealistically low. Those customers then demand large discounts from the reputable movers and go with the lowest quote. Large discounts mean that it's hard to get drivers, especially good drivers. Not enough drivers leads to the situation that you are in, Ophelia.

In other words, what I'm saying is that the problem is very large and I don't actually think it's too fruitful to focus on blaming one van line. Although I really admire your spunk and energy in wanting to take on the moving industry, I feel that there are very complex forces underlying what happened to you, and those underlying forces have to be dealt with before any real change can take place.

A promising new Highway Bill that has just been approved by Congress is awaiting Bush's signature and all of us are hopeful that it may be a first step in putting the scammers out of business. It includes large fines for holding people's things hostage and for booking moves with no particular subcontractor in mind. If the scammers can be put out of business, the reputable companies may be able to compete on service once again rather than mainly on price.

Bottom line, I urge you not to overreact. I agree with Nancy that too much wheel-spinning may distract you from studying for boards, and that is the most important thing for you to focus on at this time. Those of us who have been volunteering here for years trust and respect each other on a personal level. We have our differences, but the volunteers who are not in the industry like Tim, Tyrone, MusicMom, and yours truly are not in an "us vs. them" situation with Nancy, Michael, 23, Hardatwork, and others who happen to work in the industry. I understand your indignation about what has happened to you, but in this particular situation I just want to caution you against oversimplifying and depleting your energies.
Diane
 
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Re: North American Van Lines

Postby ophelia11 » Mon Aug 08, 2005 10:23 pm

Thanks Diane.
Yes, that last message was after I got off the phone with someone at the corporate office who didn't seem to care at all (the attitude of "you make the thousandth person I've heard this from and I don't care").
I must say that I have to recant my initial subject heading, because Allen and Coles has actually been quite sympathetic and helpful.
So, I agree with both Diane and Nancy, this is taking time away from studying for my boards. I have resigned myself to possibly not seeing my furniture and other medical books for 1 month (and hopefully not more) since a driver has not been assigned. I will take the boards on the 23rd and 24th. If my items have still not arrived by then, then I will try to find an effective means of getting them (I don't know what that will be, but ... I'll try).
I'll post whatever happens in the future on here and how long it actually took to get my shipment.
And Nancy, it is your lack of understanding about this that makes customers even more upset -- I can definitely tell you are in the industry. I just hope something of similar magnitude comes your way someday so you can see where I'm coming from.
ophelia11
 

Re: North American Van Lines

Postby Diane » Mon Aug 08, 2005 11:57 pm

Ophelia, I feel your pain. I think there is actually a driver who posts here who works for Allen and Coles in NH. Maybe he can do something. The reason I asked where you are moving from and to is that I thought the delay might have something to do with the particular route where you're moving. I've observed that East-West usually gets moved faster than North-South, except for the NY-FL lane.
Diane
 
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Re: North American Van Lines

Postby Fred0844 » Tue Aug 09, 2005 4:16 am

Nancy, it is your lack of understanding about this that makes customers even more upset


I had a customer complain last week because the crew was sweating. I was 110, high humidity, and smog. The ministry of health had warned against working outdoors in the conditions. Never mind the potential risk to their health, the guys had the audacity to sweat.

Maybe it is time to make changes in the industry. Let's stop trying to be everybody's mover. Get the rates back up to where we can reasonably provide the service. and if the customer wants cheap, then they have to go somewhere else. Quality service = reasonable priceing.
Fred0844
 

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