Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Negotiating for credits on bills

Sometimes I have to call our vendors and ask for credits. It's such a tough gig since I know that we incurred the bill and yes, we are partly responsible but then again, the excess usage charges are ridiculously over inflated and astronomous and their email reminder system didn't work.

Today I phoned XYZ(telecommunication company) and asked them to kindly credit the $308.29 excess charge. The lady on the phone was tough. Usually if I ask nicely for credits from anyone, they usually roll over and give me my credits. This lady was holding out all the way.

This is what it took to get a $231.22 credit:

1. "I'm sorry, it's a valid charge- you used it so it's payable and I can't give you any credits" (insert rebuttals)
2. "I'm sorry, look the most I can give you is $100 credit off the total" (insert more rebuttals politely about the exorbitant charges and how their reminders didn't work and someone should of advised us etc etc)
3. "I can't help you any further, all I can credit the account is $100" (can you escalate this to a department that has more authority?)
4. "There's no other department that can do that. The maximum credit that I can give you is 75% of the $308.29 usage charge and that's it. I can't credit anything more than that. No-one here can credit more than that, I'm sorry" (this is good enough and I've spent enough time on the phone for the negotiations)

So that was it. From a $356.29 bill to $96.07. It took 15 minutes to negotiate for a credit of $231.22. If you view it from the company perspective, their system didn't function as expected and thus the excess data usage was incurred. On the other hand, yes the data was used so fair enough that we(company that I work for) pay something.

It's not easy negotiating. From experience, I know that there if there's any unfair or exorbitant charges that obviously has a lot of profits built in, then there's room for negotiations and credits. Even when you're at the shop buying things- the higher the markup, the more discounting potential.

Related posts:
* Ask and you shall receive
* Asking for higher interest rates on my funds
* Maximising interest on your savings

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