Same Name != Same Company, Apparently

December 3, 2004

I bought some stuff online recently that shipped through FedEx Ground. (Hey, it was free.) As always, they attempt to deliver when only the unemployed and some college students are home, so I returned to my apartment to find their little "you weren't here" sticker on the building's front door. As usual, I drove down to the FedEx depot on 32nd Street later that evening to pick up my package.

Except, FedEx Ground isn't really FedEx. Aside from using the same tracking numbers, they don't appear to have anything to do with each other. If I wanted to pick up my delivery I would've had to drive to Coraopolis, a half-hour away.

Now, I know that FedEx Ground used to be another company, and FedEx bought them out. All I'm saying is, it doesn't matter. To your average user (which I'm pretty sure includes me in this case), FedEx is FedEx is FedEx. I should be able to retrieve a missed delivery at the depot closest to me and not to drive out to Bumblefuck for it.

Since they both employ drivers to haul their stuff around that means that someone from Coraopolis had to drive to Pittsburgh and putter around trying to deliver my package. It has to be more efficient to just haul the thing down to the Strip and transfer it. They could probably even pick up a bunch of Coraopolis-area packages that FedEx has to take back. Everybody gets their local delivery; everybody's happy.

But instead we have two different systems that, after however many years of working together, haven't managed to do anything other than use the same format for their tracking data. Now that's progress.

As an aside: the day after Attempt 1, while Attempt 2 was on the truck, I called them up to get some help. (Punch 0 when the system answers if you want to talk to a human. They don't tell you about that option, but it's there.) The lady I spoke to said she'd try to get the guy to deliver after 5:30, when I'd definitely be home. Delivery notice that day said he showed up at 12:30. Oops. Day after that, while Attempt 3 was on the truck, I called back and had them try to change the address, which they apparently aren't supposed to do because the ZIP code isn't the same. (Uh, whiskey-tango-foxtrot, over.) That lady said it would go into the system this morning and they'd try to deliver it to me at work on Monday. We can only wait and see.

December 2, 2004December 6, 2004