Was given a citation by a scheduler

I self assigned 4 shops on Monday, one for tuesday and 3 for wednesday.. Monday night my car overheated and even though I let it cool down, it overheated again within a couple blocks. I waited again, tried again, and no dice. Called triple A and got home very late monday night, might have even been the wee hours of tuesday. I knew it was the head gasket as it had been repaired for that a month ago, and the mechanic said it might hold, might not.

Anyhow, I mailed the scheduler of those four shops that same night that I got home that I had to cancel them and why. So what do I see last night but an email from the scheduler saying I am issued a citation for cancelling all 4 shops on the due date with a commentary regarding it on the citation. Well, I did not cancel them on the due date, SHE did not read her emails until Wednesday. The scheduler is from a scheduling company and placed the citation on the MSC's board. I do not do many shops for this MSC, but it just chuffs my hiney that the scheduler did this, coming on top of the disaster of having now to get a new car. I sent her a couple emails explaining all this, and that she did not read her mails in a timely manner otherwise she'd have seen them before the due date, but got no response. I am not a flake shopper and not sure if there is any recourse or if I should just blow it off.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/16/2015 05:14PM by onepotatotwo.

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It definitely grinds your gears when a scheduler treats you like a child. I've had only one scheduler pull that crap on me and I ultimately deactivated myself from that MSC, now one of those most complained-about MSC's here.
I imagine that for every shopper that tries to do everything right like most of the people here, there are a hundred losers that ruin it for the rest of us. That doesn't necessarily give them an excuse to treat every shopper like a toddler, but I can sorta see how there has got to be some burnout-based attitude that goes on.

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Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/16/2015 05:23PM by Hoju.
If I were in your position and she did not respond, especially being a third-party scheduler for the MSC? I would forward the message to a MSC rep and CC that scheduler explaining in detail what happened and why the citation was not deserved. Is this an MSC that uses SASSIE? If so, those are quite a bit painful to see and might hinder your ability on being assigned a project if the scheduler isn't familiar with your reputation.

Shopping the Greater Denver Area, Colorado Springs and in-between in Colorado. 31 year old male and willing to travel!
If it were me, I would attach a jpg of the car repair bill from a month ago as well as any bill or receipt from the tow or any other relevant documentation. Certainly we all want to have reliable vehicles and your recent repair speaks to that. I would apologize for the inconvenience them and indicate that once you get another car you hope to work with them further and hope that a citation would not preclude that.
Maybe I'm being harsh, but I'm not sure why the citation was undeserved. Fact is, you canceled four shops, one on the scheduled day and three on the day before. That's something that negatively impacted the MSC, and it seems appropriate that it was noted on your shopper profile.

I understand that car trouble is rarely our fault, but in this case, you admit that you were relying on a vehicle with a repair that "might hold, might not."

I live in a major city and do most of my shopping either on foot or public transportation. However, I'll occasionally make a mini-route of a few shops that require getting in the car. A few months back, I had one of these mini-routes scheduled, and the night before, found that utility crews doing emergency work beneath the road surface had blocked me in (I park on the street). I had already made a commitment to complete those shops, and wasn't sure I'd be able to get them to move the equipment the next morning, so what could I do? I ran back inside my home, fired up a travel website, found the least expensive car rental place near me, and reserved a car for the following day.

Since I couldn't find a great deal on short notice, I spent nearly as much on the car rental as I earned in shop fees that day. I'll likely deduct the cost of the rental as a business expense (provided IRS rules allow it), but it won't make for a very profitable day. I saw it as the cost of doing business and maintaining my "brand" as a dependable shopper.
I could not have said it better than Capital Jay. You could borrow a car from a friend or relative. I had that issue a few weeks ago. My vehicle died outside the location the shop previously was located at. I could have done that shop if it did not move. I learned It moved a few blocks away. I was fortunate. I could not go a few blocks as I was not assigned that location.
@op:

Oh, my.


Hang in there. All is not lost. You have an opportunity now to regroup. What else can you do? I will hold a good thought for you.

I have that citation due to untimely computer death. I was using the last available computer that could be borrowed. In my world it is not possible to rent computers. I could not buy another computer in time for the looming shops. Public computers were not available enough in the time frame.

I applaud you for giving as much notice as possible. You get only encouragement from me.

Spring being a tough act to follow, God created June.- Al Bernstein
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I’ve noticed that everyone who is for abortion has already been born. - Ronald Reagan
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In the OP's defense (I don't know why I'm getting involved, really), there are plenty of people that don't have the ability to borrow a friends car on such short notice. 4 jobs could have taken several hours. That's kind of a lot to ask even if the friend had a car available. As far as renting a car is concerned, if *I* wanted to rent a car and had no car already, I would have to find a way to get to my closest rental agency- about a half hour away then back after dropping the car off.
If the OP was in this kind of situation I can certainly see why she would cancel them. A citation should be for when people blow off or cancel for stupid reasons, not for anything legitimate. What if her mother died suddenly? Should she be cited?

On the other hand, the scheduler doesn't necessarily know if the OP is telling the truth at all unless the OP had a good working relationship with the scheduler, which it appears she didn't.

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.
@CapitalJay wrote:

Maybe I'm being harsh, but I'm not sure why the citation was undeserved. Fact is, you canceled four shops, one on the scheduled day and three on the day before. That's something that negatively impacted the MSC, and it seems appropriate that it was noted on your shopper profile.

I understand that car trouble is rarely our fault, but in this case, you admit that you were relying on a vehicle with a repair that "might hold, might not."

I live in a major city and do most of my shopping either on foot or public transportation. However, I'll occasionally make a mini-route of a few shops that require getting in the car. A few months back, I had one of these mini-routes scheduled, and the night before, found that utility crews doing emergency work beneath the road surface had blocked me in (I park on the street). I had already made a commitment to complete those shops, and wasn't sure I'd be able to get them to move the equipment the next morning, so what could I do? I ran back inside my home, fired up a travel website, found the least expensive car rental place near me, and reserved a car for the following day.

Since I couldn't find a great deal on short notice, I spent nearly as much on the car rental as I earned in shop fees that day. I'll likely deduct the cost of the rental as a business expense (provided IRS rules allow it), but it won't make for a very profitable day. I saw it as the cost of doing business and maintaining my "brand" as a dependable shopper.

And that justifies the scheduler to settle the way she did? The scheduler saw things Black & White and did not do their due diligence to respond to the shopper in a timely manner and communicate with the shopper. On top of that, having the citation state that the shopper cancelled on the due date (in reality, the shopper did not), which will leave the wrong impression when the MSC or other schedulers see this.

But when the scheduler makes a scheduling mistake, cancels a shop abruptly, reneging on bonuses or responds late on our emails / calls, us shoppers don't demand the MSC 'punishes' them for doing things like this.

Shopping the Greater Denver Area, Colorado Springs and in-between in Colorado. 31 year old male and willing to travel!
Call Enterprise; they'll pick you up! (At least according to their commercials)

@Hoju wrote:

In the OP's defense (I don't know why I'm getting involved, really), there are plenty of people that don't have the ability to borrow a friends car on such short notice. 4 jobs could have taken several hours. That's kind of a lot to ask even if the friend had a car available. As far as renting a car is concerned, if *I* wanted to rent a car and had no car already, I would have to find a way to get to my closest rental agency- about a half hour away then back after dropping the car off.
If the OP was in this kind of situation I can certainly see why she would cancel them. A citation should be for when people blow off or cancel for stupid reasons, not for anything legitimate. What if her mother died suddenly? Should she be cited?

On the other hand, the scheduler doesn't necessarily know if the OP is telling the truth at all unless the OP had a good working relationship with the scheduler, which it appears she didn't.

Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon...
...No matter how good you are, the pigeon will s@^t on the board and strut around like it won anyway.

Not scheduling for ANY company.
@DanteScheduler wrote:

Call Enterprise; they'll pick you up! (At least according to their commercials)

@Hoju wrote:

In the OP's defense (I don't know why I'm getting involved, really), there are plenty of people that don't have the ability to borrow a friends car on such short notice. 4 jobs could have taken several hours. That's kind of a lot to ask even if the friend had a car available. As far as renting a car is concerned, if *I* wanted to rent a car and had no car already, I would have to find a way to get to my closest rental agency- about a half hour away then back after dropping the car off.
If the OP was in this kind of situation I can certainly see why she would cancel them. A citation should be for when people blow off or cancel for stupid reasons, not for anything legitimate. What if her mother died suddenly? Should she be cited?

On the other hand, the scheduler doesn't necessarily know if the OP is telling the truth at all unless the OP had a good working relationship with the scheduler, which it appears she didn't.

I've tried to get them to pick me up a couple of times and the areas they will pick up in are very limited, at least where I live.
I can see how he negatively impacted the company but that's life, sometimes it's out of our control. A flake citation was uncalled for, IMO.
A scheduler is lied to likely every day of the week as to why a contract assignment is not completed. You complete the assignment per the contract or you flaked. It really is black and white. If you have a good relationship with the scheduler and a past history, you might get out of it. Just like you might talk your way out of a speeding ticket with the right sob story or get the meter maid to stop writing the ticket because you had a good reason to be late to get back to the car in time. Good luck with that one.

A flaked assignment is a flake. Even if you are in the hospital, you are not not as dependable and may collapse again and flake on the next assignment. If you were run over by a mac truck, you might not look and walk out into the road and be hit again.

It does not matter what the reason is, the flake is a tally of how many assignments were missed for any and all reasons.
I had my old car break down in the middle of a busy intersection during rush hour traffic. Two guys helped me push it to the side of the road and I called AAA. They gave me a 4-hour wait until someone could come tow my car. I said screw that. I let the local police know of the situation.

I called a friend of mine who picked me up and drove me to my house. He had to be somewhere else so he could not drive me to my last job. So I got on my bike and pedaled my azz off to make it to the location before they closed. I got the shop done, pedaled my azz back home, submitted the report and made my deadline.

I have also called Enterprise when I had multiple shops and a long distance to drive. Enterprise usually has low one-day rates. Where there is a will, there is a way.
I sympathize with the OP. I think one of the main complaints was that 4 shops were cited as same-day flakes instead of just the one. Also, it's not always easy to rent a car, especially if you don't have a credit card and if you're scraping by. When my previous car finally conked out, I was fortunate in that I had a couple of days before my next shops to jump through the hoops required to get a car without a credit card, and I was also lucky I had enough money in the bank at the time.

I also see the point of view of the scheduler. Anyone who uses a car is likely to have car trouble at some point. If a shopper doesn't have backup transportation, it makes them less reliable, regardless of their good intentions.
@Piled Hip Deep, PHD wrote:

I could not have said it better than Capital Jay. You could borrow a car from a friend or relative. I had that issue a few weeks ago. My vehicle died outside the location the shop previously was located at. I could have done that shop if it did not move. I learned It moved a few blocks away. I was fortunate. I could not go a few blocks as I was not assigned that location.

Like everyone has a friend or relative they can borrow a car from.....there is no one in my area that would give away their car for a day......

for 1 shop..if it were nearby, i would look into public transit or a cab just to get it done....or I might be able to get a ride from a friend.....for the shops more than 24 hours later..i would do everything in my power to get my car fixed...even moving it to a different mechanic if I had to....and for 3 shops renting a car should at least about break even.....

but if the citation was truly for canceling on the day they were do...and you did notify them more than 24 hours...that doesn't seem right
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I sympathize with onepotatotwo for receiving a flake citation after having car trouble, but keep in mind that we don't know onepotatotwo's track record, only what she told us in her post. These might be the first shops she did for this scheduler or they might be the 7th or 8th time she has canceled. Because we are not employees, we get no sick leave or vacation. It's just one job after another and complete the job in order to get paid.

Who really cares about the citation? The issue here is that the scheduler does not think onepotatotwo is reliable. We build our reputations based on our reliability. Unreliable shoppers don't get jobs. Let's say the scheduler removes the citation. the scheduler still thinks she's unreliable. Same difference.

Onepotatotwo has still let her customer down and the customer won't want to use her again, regardless of whether she writes a citation.
It is a scheduling company, which I have a very good track record with, but with the particular MSC, I seldom do shops. I cannot borrow a car, and these were quick shops paying only $12 each, and in NY the only cars they'll rent you for that amount won't start. I scheduled on Monday, I cancelled Monday night. Scheduler didn't even look at her mails till Wednesday afternoon. It is Sassie, and everyone can see what she wrote, which was an out and out lie, and she accentuated said lie in her commentary.

As for my track record, or whether I'm lying...lol. I have not named any names and would not. I have absolutely no reason to lie. Most everyone who deals with me considers me very reliable and have very close to perfect ratings with just about all the companies I do work for.

Thanks, everyone, for your replies.
I had a scheduler pull that on me once after I emailed them 5 times to cancel a shop well ahead of time. Eventually I had to forward my e-mails to their supervisor to get things fixed. Good luck. Try to appeal to someone.

Fwiw I highly doubt it would be worthwhile to rent a car to try and get things done. You'd spend more on that then you could possibly make.
Are independent schedulers as accountable for the issuance of citations as in house schedulers are? Is there a tracking mechanism in place to prevent abuse of power?
@onepotatotwo wrote:

It is Sassie, and everyone can see what she wrote, which was an out and out lie, and she accentuated said lie in her commentary.

I'm not 100% certain, but I don't think everyone can see it just because it is Sassie. I believe it is just that one company.
I just looked up 1 car rental place in Brooklyn NY (not knowing the exact area). The cheapest was $44 (I'm guessing plus tax).

In Albany NY, I found a car for about $48

To rent the car for the 3 shops would just be a small loss...and maybe you could actually find other shops to pick up that day to make up the difference...I would take the $10 loss to get the shops done and avoid flaking....the day with just 1 shop is a little more iffy...

but if you could pick up the car noon on Tuesday..do the Tuesday shop...and then do the Wednesday shops by noon Weds and return the car...you have 4 shops with a 1 day rental
Take Flash's advice, then forget about it...then move on because there is more $ to be made.
I had this situation just last week, but I was fortunate. My car broke down last Friday afternoon and I had two shops due that day for the same MSC. I contacted them and told them I would be renting a car on Saturday to complete my weekend shops and they rescheduled the two shops due on Friday. I so appreciated their trust in me to get those jobs done!
...so, some stranger gave you a citation. Give them one by not dealing with them if possible. You have to understand their side, but you do not work for them. It is not a write up from an employer. Go somewhere else and get that car fixed. smiling smiley
@jmitw wrote:

@Piled Hip Deep, PHD wrote:

I could not have said it better than Capital Jay. You could borrow a car from a friend or relative. I had that issue a few weeks ago. My vehicle died outside the location the shop previously was located at. I could have done that shop if it did not move. I learned It moved a few blocks away. I was fortunate. I could not go a few blocks as I was not assigned that location.

Like everyone has a friend or relative they can borrow a car from.....there is no one in my area that would give away their car for a day......

for 1 shop..if it were nearby, i would look into public transit or a cab just to get it done....or I might be able to get a ride from a friend.....for the shops more than 24 hours later..i would do everything in my power to get my car fixed...even moving it to a different mechanic if I had to....and for 3 shops renting a car should at least about break even.....

but if the citation was truly for canceling on the day they were do...and you did notify them more than 24 hours...that doesn't seem right
.

It is a pity you do not have friends jmitw. I lent my vehicle to people who dropped me off at work and picked me up later. I did not need my car all day. Most people do not need their cars when they are working. If you do for others they will reciprocate. That is what friendship or being related means. You are not in this world by yourself.
I have found that if I have had a problem, weather, car trouble I have told the scheduler what the problem was and asked to reschedule the shop. I try to do more than send an email. I call the company and find someone to talk to. I do not like to just expect that one email would take care of the problem. By being proactive my MSC and schedulers are willing to work with me in the situation.
I did not read what Piled Hip wrote in the same negative way as I think you might have @jmitw, but I can definitely see where it is condescending. I, too, would probably not easily be able to find a car to 'borrow' if I needed one. I have many acquaintances and a large professional network, but few friends - intentionally.
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