It’s exactly ten days ago today that Moneyweb reported on the website’s "teething problems" citing, among others, difficulties in lodging annual returns and dealing with a call centre that takes up to an hour or more to answer calls, and when it does, it seems unable to assist with queries adequately. This week Moneyweb experienced the frustrations first hand.
This journalist logged into and lodged a query with the CIPC e-mail address: email@example.com . More than 24 hours later, a response or acknowledgement of receipt is still not forthcoming. Then, a phone call to the call centre went unanswered for more than 20 minutes. Frustration aplenty.
CIPC spokesperson Elsabe Conradie says a total revamp of the website, which she described users as finding "un-user friendly" is on the cards as a priority, the snag - it’s going to take time. A new web designer will be tasked with this mammoth assignment. "Because of the un-user friendliness we aim to appoint a web designer to redesign the total website, which currently requires two or three logins to do different transactions," Conradie said.
As for the delay in calls being answered, Conradie says callers, once they get through, tend to inundate the operators with queries that can take up to a half an hour or more to answer. One complaint reads: "First off, their so called call centre, what use is it if no one answers the phone there? What makes me laugh is the recorded message of some bulls***t that how they value our call etc, what a joke!"
Scores of Moneyweb readers have complained of not getting any joy out of queries sent via e-mail. It’s understood the CIPC has been inundated with mailed queries and is battling to deal with a backlog there.
The only real light at the end of the tunnel at this juncture is that businesses who are fined for not lodging their annual returns timeously, through no fault of their own, will have some recourse. The CIPC has a system in place to track attempts to access the system. Users must keep records of the dates and times they tried to access the system and the commission will be in a position to track and verify this. In the meantime, vasbyt!
This article first appeared on Moneyweb.co.za