United Poor Service
Imagine you need to send a packet abroad.
After surfing the web to have a look at the available options, you select a courier.
You then start following the instructions to book the corresponding service.
The last step of the process consists in pressing the button to pay and get the label to put on the parcel.
After clicking on it, you may realize that the payment was successful indeed, but… surprise, surprise… the label was not generated (at least, not as easily as you had expected).
Let me go a little deeper into what actually happened to me after that last step.
First, a warning message was shown: the browser I was using had apparently blocked a pop-up window. Presumably that one required to generate the shipping label.
Okay —I thought—, let’s add an exception to the browser security options and try again.
Allowing the corresponding web site did not prevent the alert from appearing again, though.
Okay —I mused—, let’s completely disable the pop-up blocking for a while, then.
Do you think doing this was enough to earn my longed-for label? If so, you might be too naive.
Don’t worry, though: there’s still an allegedly useful button over here: let’s try to get the label via email…
Well, if no email is sent/received at the beginning, don’t despair: just press the button a dozen times. You’ll get a message from the courier sooner or later.
Do you perhaps think it will contain your shipping label? Again, you are definitely too naive…
It will include a strange sentence instead: “Gauti siuntimo bilietą”.
According to Google Translate, this means “Get a shipping ticket” in Lithuanian. Okay, it sounds good.
(At that point, you prefer not to try to understand why an instruction in Lithuanian appears within a message in another language.)
You decide to see where the corresponding link leads you.
You land on a familiar web page.
There’s a button to be pressed in order to get the label via email. Yes, it sounds really familiar…
This start seeming an infinite loop.
Anyway, let’s press the button again.
This time, you quickly receive the corresponding email.
Although it doesn’t include any sentence in Lithuanian, it provides you with the same link to the same web page containing the same familiar and unhelpful button.
Now, that’s definitely an endless loop and also clear evidence this functionality hasn’t been tested properly. How come?
P.S. Finally, I was able to copy/paste the shipping label from the blocked/underlying pop-up window. So, I hope my packet will reach its destination soon.
I would have expected more consistency, less loops, and a substantially better user experience from such a famous multinational package delivery and supply chain management company, though…
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—FOLLOW UP ON THIS STORY—
You may be happy to know that my parcel finally reached its destination.
In the meantime, I discovered another interesting thing about United Poor Service, though.
There’s a button in their website intended to get notifications about the status of your delivery.
It turns out it only works on demand.
So, if you are on the website, you can see the status and you can also press the button to receive an email with the same status you are currently seeing on the website.
However, you won’t receive any message once the status is updated, unless you visit the website and press the button again.
That’s very useful, isn’t it?
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