Automated telephone enquiry centres. A rant in B minor.

I have just had the displeasure of phoning my tax-return assessment through to an automated ‘voice-activated’ centre run by the Aussie Taxation Office. It’s the first time they have offered this service, and I expected it to make life tres grouse easier than filing a lodgement online or via the post.

I fort I talked kinda like a normal yob and all ya know, but turns out I am utterly indecipherable on the telemaphone.

“Are you eligible to lodge a phone-return?” was the first question.

When I answered, “Yes”, and the robotic sheila on the other end replied that, “I’m sorry, it seems like you are having trouble giving us an answer” (or summat to that effect), I should’ve given up there and then and sent the return in by mail. :rolleyes:

But I persisted. And it got worse.

Every. Single. Bloody. Question. that required a yes or no answer got the same delayed and repeated response. It seemed to be alright when I was rattling off salary and deduction figures and stuff, but as soon as it got to a simple question, the system floundered. I nearly shoved the phone right out the window in desperation.
Actually, the miaowing moggie was closer and I nearly shoved the phone up HER bum, but I thought it was unfair to sool the tax-department onto an innocent cat. Mind you, I bet you the sounds emanating out of her rectum would have made more sense to this stupid freaking phone system. :smiley:

I had to get the taxi to work every day for a couple of months. One of the cab companies here has a voice activated booking system. I found that, although my voice is naturally fairly deep, I had to make my voice deeper than normal for it to understand me. This greatly amused my housemates and I copped my fair share of crap about it. I can’t imagine having to lodge a tax return like that :eek:

What did you expect, Kambukta? A phone call to directory enquiries wishing the phone number of Brisbane City Council elicits the robotic response: “did you wish the number for Bastards-R-Us?”

I hate voice systems with a passion. Apparently nobody stopped to think that if you’re calling your tax office, DMV, the phone company, or whatever, and if you have to make the call during business hours at your own work, you’d rather be able to silently push a few buttons, than have to CLEARLY and LOUDLY ENUNCIATE your business in front of your colleagues. Not to mention having difficult or unusual names or addresses that you have to repeat.