Random Thoughts

When Computers Fight Back

One of my tasks at work is to send out marketing emails every month. Today is the day of the month they go out. It’s a simple five step process:

  1. Create email
  2. Create “activity”
  3. Schedule “activity” for specific group of customers
  4. Process “activity”
  5. Study analytics

This is a hitchless process.

Or is it?

Today my process was more like:

  1. Create email
  2. Create “activity”
  3. Schedule “activity” for specific group of customers
    1. SHIT…clicked on the group below the intended group
    2. Schedule for the proper group
  4. Process “activity”
    1. WAIT…I can’t process an activity for a specific group. I can only process an activity created by a specific rep (that would be me)
    2. Go to the boss (the one with permissions to delete schedules)
    3. Both schedules deleted
  5. Schedule “activity” for proper group
  6. Process “activity”
  7. Walk away from computer to help a colleague with a few things (15 minutes)
  8. Walk back to my desk – Why is this “activity” still processing?????
  9. See email notifications blowing up my email
  10. Get a phone call from a colleague “Customer ABC just called and said they’ve received 200 emails and they said to make it stop NOW!”
  11. FUCK!
  12. “Activities” finish processing
    1. Computer processed proper “activity”
    2. Computer processed DELETED “activity” number one
    3. Computer processed DELETED “activity” number two
    4. 2458 emails went out – many customers getting three mails each because they are in multiple groups – MAJOR customers getting more than that because they have the same contact information on multiple accounts

I am NOT looking at the analytics.

I had more hateful emails today than I have ever had in my nearly 16 years of working for this company.

To top it off, one customer replied to the email asking for the price of the item we were featuring. I responded. She replied, “But what’s the price?” I responded with a more detailed explanation of how it works. She replied, “I don’t see the price anywhere.” I tried a third time. She responded a third time. I finally picked up the phone and called her. At least she was nice and was laughing. For some reason, my replies to an “activity” generated email doesn’t send the reply along with it…it merely resends the original.

Yup. It’s been that kind of day. I’ve always said that a computer can only do what a person tells it to do, but I did EVERYTHING correctly to fix my error and the computer rebelled.

Gremlins. It’s the only logical explanation.

There’s a reason that I drink, ya’ll!


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