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Corona Virus


***Update 26 May 2020***

The nursery tell us they are confident our back log will be cleared this week providing there are no further courier restrictions.

21 May 2020

Predicting delivery accurately is near impossible due to courier inconsistency. We expect a big truck and they send a small van which increases your delay. Unpacking the remaining boxes to water your order is extra work we already have no capacity for. 
We have taken on a new courier to deal with this but their software is not working and their IT department is overwhelmed because of Covid. 
We are looking for a third courier at a reasonable price but no one wants our business. The boxes are termed "uglies" because they cannot go through automated processes and have to be man handled. 
Limited courier capacity is being given to higher profit customers i.e. small parcels and we are being shoved to the back of the queue.
We will receive severe restrictions with zero notice from couriers, sometimes they refuse to even come on a given day.  

Your frustration is understood and shared this end. I can guarantee you we are working very long hours to fulfil our end of the deal and that silence from us does not represent incompetence or lack of caring. Refunding your order costs us money so we have another incentive to deliver.

We only have a rough idea when your order will be delivered and it will be one of three time slots. 

Within 7 working days. Usually trees between 10-60cm tall.  
Around 20 working days. Usually trees between 150-200cm tall.
Within 30 working days. Soft fruits, vines and most feathered trees. 

Scenarios that we agree need urgent attention include:

Cancelling of an order before we send it out.
Change of delivery address.

The best way to do this is email info@trees-online.co.uk with the subject line ALAN, I KNOW YOU ARE BUSY BUT......

Thanks to the 99% of you that recognised very different times means very different expectations. 


*** How The Corona Virus Has Changed Our Business***
The biggest change you will see from us is extended delivery times on most orders which may appear random if you have ordered more than one product. This is because our nurseries are located throughout the UK and each is affected differently. 

Each nursery is unique and the same problem affects them differently. Smaller, remote nurseries that are family run usually live on site and suffer staff shortages less but their delivery company or box supplier may have intermittent problems supporting them. Larger nurseries with lots of boxes on site can be staffed by EU nationals that are going home to support their family. As the lock down period extends then the severity of consequences increases.  In short, new unforeseen business stopping problems are occurring daily and We are literally making this up as we go and 

We greatly appreciate your business at the best of times, even more so now. We have not forgotten about you and will do our best to keep you informed of delays. We have been forced to move across to email only and will answer your queries as soon as possible. 

Automated Messages For Some Enquiries
We have been forced to setup a "not as accurate as we would like" automated messaging system for some emails. If it contains a word or phrase such as delivery, ETA, refund etc, you may receive an automated message pointing you to come here. 

You are not currently receiving anything remotely close to decent customer service. You have paid your money and getting nothing but a wall of silence from Trees Online. The best we can do is to explain why that it is and assure you we have not forgotten.

On an average day, we are receiving around 200% more orders than we have ever experienced. On days that spike, it goes up to around 600% and those spikes are looking more and more like average days. 1 hour turn around for large quotes is now a week. The nurseries have ALWAYS bent over backwards to sell more stock and now they have limited how many orders per day we can process. The phone ringing was always a good thing, we have had to turn it off and go to email only. Maintaining the website was usually a once yearly massive task and now we have had to do it three times in as many months (stock that was once unavailable is now coming back from retail outlets to be sold as mail order). 

We are trying to prioritise workload but it means there could easily be a 5+ working day delay between email receipt and reply or action for which I can only apologise for. We will sort it out eventually when something like normal returns. 

I know the silent treatment is the best breeding ground for resentment, anger, mistrust etc but I can promise you I hate it as much as you do, if not more because my salary depends on your cash! So for as silent as we may seem, I can assure you the volume levels here are deafening.

Thank you 

Alan
Senior Dogsbody For Trees Online.  

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