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Santa Missed Some Deliveries…

December 26, 2013

Facebook Christmas EveThe ghost of Christmas procrastination visited me at 1AM Christmas morning as I wrapped presents for my family. By 2AM Santa had delivered a bicycle across town so (Play)Joyce would have a morning surprise, then he staggered to bed after a quick Facebook post.

All my shopping was complete by last Saturday, but many shoppers gambled on “everything going according to plan” and relied on one or two-day shipping to deliver. Well, it seems mission control at North Pole sub-contractors UPS and FedEx got overwhelmed, and “Santa’s Sleigh” for some, was empty.

Then people lost their minds.

Joker Christmas Package DelaysAttached to stories on CBS, NBC, CNN, and others were the rantings of the sane and insane. Comments blamed the Democrats, Republicans, corporate greed, American consumerism, lazy delivery personnel, the demise of the USPS, and of course the shoppers themselves. Livid customers and people with nothing better to do were spreading Christmas jeer by singing loud for all to hear… I’m sure social media went nuts, too, but I’ve got a deadline.

It is tough to deliver a consistently great service experience at a price that’s reasonable to customers, and that can deliver a reasonable profit. Even for a cloud services provider, 99.9% (“three nines”) system availability means 8.76 hours downtime in a year, or 43.8 minutes a month, or 10.1 minutes a day. It’s near impossible to be perfect and meet customer expectations all the time, but most companies try hard, no matter what the service, or they go out of business.

UPS and FedEx delivered all of my packages on time. I hope you got yours.

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