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  • #16
    I would agree with you about changing the name of this sub forum. Preferably to a name that people understand without having to ask what it means. Kvetching is a word I have never come across in any other context and I consider myself to be reasonably well read.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by efgen View Post
      I wish this wasn't the perception, and I don't know how to change it

      Elise
      I agree about changing the name of this section of the forum will help but if you really want to change the perception that people have about the company...improve.

      Improve communication, not only with customers but between the departments within the company. It appears that everytime I call about my kit or a project members kit the response is i will have to check with the lab and get back to you.

      Improve customer relations by meeting deadlines and keeping the customer informed. When was the last time someone called/emailed a customer to let them know that their kit failed QC and it will take another 3-6 weeks for results without the customer complaining first?

      Improve time frames for tests with realistic dates and not just have the system sit at results in 1-2 weeks for 6 weeks.

      Fix issues with the current website and GAP before you keep adding new stuff that isn't ready and breaks other sections of the website.

      Improving is the answer

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Pinny View Post
        When was the last time someone called/emailed a customer to let them know that their kit failed QC and it will take another 3-6 weeks for results without the customer complaining first?
        When a DNA sample is exhausted and the lab must send out a new collection kit, both the customer and the project administrator should be sent email notification.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by LynCra View Post
          I would agree with you about changing the name of this sub forum. Preferably to a name that people understand without having to ask what it means. Kvetching is a word I have never come across in any other context and I consider myself to be reasonably well read.
          I never thought about it before, but if a person was new to DNA testing AND was also unfamiliar with the word "kvetching", he or she might think "DNA-Kvetching" was some kind of DNA test!!!

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          • #20
            Maybe there is hope for my Project requests after all! I've put two requests in, one more than 6 months ago, and one 20th August to which I have not received replies. Also put a support request in asking if there was a problem, no responses yet for any.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by hfp43 View Post
              I've been doing business with FTDNA for over two years, with 15 tests to date. I have no complaints about their customer service.
              It's been over eight years for me, and I have no complaints, as well.

              In fact, it's startling to me to see these complaints, since my experience with FTDNA has been so good.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Stevo View Post
                It's been over eight years for me, and I have no complaints, as well.

                In fact, it's startling to me to see these complaints, since my experience with FTDNA has been so good.
                I've not had reason to complain about my tests either, but I count myself among the fortunate.

                However, many's the time that I have not received a match notification email and some have arrived months after the match date.

                For some reason, FTDNA IT cannot do email.

                Some years ago I sent a query email regarding a thing called "smart matching" that was supposed, according to Bennett Greenspan, to be going to be implemented for Y STR matches. I got no reply. After waiting 4 weeks I sent it again. After another 2 weeks I wrote snail mail to Greenspan outlining my experience with his company's email and 14 days thereafter I got a belated reply to my email.

                IMO there's an email 'black hole' at FTDNA into which goes any message that the first reader cannot understand or cannot deal with. This is where queries about setting up projects go, amongst other things.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by lgmayka View Post
                  When a DNA sample is exhausted and the lab must send out a new collection kit, both the customer and the project administrator should be sent email notification.
                  In the past 6 months 2 project members, and a friend in another project received new test kits in the mail. They were never notified to as why until they called and asked and even that question wasn't answered on the first call. These may be isolated cases but I don't think so. In one of the haplogoup projects there is a member who has been waiting since Nov 2013 for their Big-Y results. They receive no regular communications from FTDNA, only when they call to inquire about every 4 weeks.

                  I personally have been testing with FTDNA for about 4 years and I never had any bad experiences until about OCT 2013 and it has only been down fill from there as to FTDNA customer service. I think they do well at DNA testing, it is customer service and the IT department that needs improvement.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by gtc View Post
                    The kvetching bit is the work of the previous forum administrator who apparently thought we are Yiddish.
                    Whoever may be responsible, that person is not someone I'd want working for me, especially in a public-facing role, if I were trying to run a business like this.

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                    • #25
                      12 years for me, with over 80 participants. No reason to complain here.

                      If there is a question, I find that the Contact Us messaging system works best.

                      Timothy Peterman

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                      • #26
                        I suppose this doesn't belong in "DNA-Kvetching Central," but I'll post it to present the other side of the story.

                        As Sicily Project administrator, two days ago I sent an e-mail to the Help Desk about a new project member who had mistakenly created two kit numbers for himself by ordering separate tests as a new customer each time. I wrote the Help Desk on behalf of the member, asking them to merge his two kits into one kit number. Keeping two kit numbers would probably create confusion in the future.

                        I received a Request ID number immediately, which I could use to refer to in future correspondence. Yesterday I received a reply telling me that FTDNA will merge his two kit numbers into one kit number. Problem solved and promptly.

                        I've been an FTDNA customer since 2005 and had numerous tests done. Frankly, I learned a long time ago that the DNA testing process is inherently a hard thing to predict. You have to take into account failure of samples and backlogs in the lab after major sales, etc. So I just order a test and then expect that I will get the result in a relatively reasonable amount of time, with a margin for some possible delay. I don't see the need to obsess over exactly when I'll get it. So, I don't have any complaints about that part of the process.

                        I do have to say that FTDNA needs to significantly improve its overall customer service and IT operations. I've read too many posts here that indicate that FTDNA is unnecessarily frustrating their customers in these two areas.

                        To sum up, FTDNA customers should understand the problems that may come up in getting a test result on time. Chill out and get on with your life while you wait for the results. And FTDNA should show that they care more about the experience of their customers in using the website in all aspects. In short, they should be more responsive to the (legitimate) concerns that their customers express, like better communication with customer service. In most cases, explaining delays whenever possible reduces the frustration that customers may feel.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by MMaddi View Post
                          So I just order a test and then expect that I will get the result in a relatively reasonable amount of time, with a margin for some possible delay.
                          <Chuckle> I only wish I could be so naive.

                          The truth is that pending test results have to be checked from time to time for test orders that apparently "fell through the cracks."

                          - Sample exhaustion is the most common, but can be trickier than it sounds. Because FTDNA does not send an email notification or even post a clear status, neither the customer nor the project administrator is expecting anything in postal mail. Many customers do not bother updating the postal address on their account because it is so rarely used, so the collection kit never even reaches the customer.

                          - A couple of years ago, it was very common for a SNP test to fail several times, then simply be "put on the shelf." In other words, FTDNA would not bother to retest but would not bother sending out a new collection kit either (or refund the customer's money). My impression is that this particular problem has mostly disappeared of late, perhaps due to a procedural improvement.

                          - Occasionally, a test will inexplicably be ignored. One project member ordered the Big Y during last year's introductory sale. Being all too patient, he inquired once in June, but never got an answer (or results). I finally escalated the matter last week, and was promised that work on it will restart.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by lgmayka View Post
                            <Chuckle> I only wish I could be so naive.
                            Well, maybe that seems naive to you, but I think I'm being realistic. My experience, both as a customer and a project adminstrator of two projects (with a combined membership of over 2,500 people), is that given the amounts of orders I've been involved in there is a small percentage that don't come in on time or close to on time.

                            Yes, I've seen cases of several months for the full sequence mtDNA, but I would not characterize that as the usual case with FTDNA. And during the first round of Big Y tests ordered before Jan. 1, we had a few members of the R1b-U106 Project who had ixexplicably long delays in getting results, with not much communication from FTDNA about the reason for the long delay.

                            So yes, there are problem cases. I don't overlook them and can certainly understand how someone in that position would be frustrated. But I think it would be wrong to judge FTDNA's overall record on timeliness of test results based on the complaints that are registered. So, call me naive.

                            Originally posted by lgmayka View Post
                            The truth is that pending test results have to be checked from time to time for test orders that apparently "fell through the cracks."

                            - Sample exhaustion is the most common, but can be trickier than it sounds. Because FTDNA does not send an email notification or even post a clear status, neither the customer nor the project administrator is expecting anything in postal mail. Many customers do not bother updating the postal address on their account because it is so rarely used, so the collection kit never even reaches the customer.

                            - A couple of years ago, it was very common for a SNP test to fail several times, then simply be "put on the shelf." In other words, FTDNA would not bother to retest but would not bother sending out a new collection kit either (or refund the customer's money). My impression is that this particular problem has mostly disappeared of late, perhaps due to a procedural improvement.

                            - Occasionally, a test will inexplicably be ignored. One project member ordered the Big Y during last year's introductory sale. Being all too patient, he inquired once in June, but never got an answer (or results). I finally escalated the matter last week, and was promised that work on it will restart.
                            Your points are well-taken and true. But they relate more to how FTDNA communicates (or fails to communicate) with their customers about these delays and problems in getting results. I thought I made clear that FTDNA has to improve in this area, so we agree.

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