Secret Diary of a Call (centre) Boy

...a Sky call centre to be precise.

Ordering Sky

Do it online or over the phone. Both of these methods are recorded in some way. If you buy it from a shop, a booth in a shopping centre or from a door to door ****** they will lie through their teeth to get a sale. They'll also get the order wrong and the offers you've been promised (if they exist) won't be applied.

Make sure they get your address right - especially important if you're getting a new phone line. Once an "engineer" is booked you can't change your address until he finishes the job (difficult if he goes to the wrong house) or the job is cancelled. If that happens, you go to the back of the queue.

You do not have a "package". All of the services are separate entities which are applied to your account. Just because you asked for "the package they had on the telly" doesn't mean you'll get it all in a one-er unless you tell the person taking the order exactly what you want.

If you are referred to a third party installer or a "local specialist" it's classified as an indirect sale. This is used as an excuse not to give you introductory offers (esp. Introduce a Friend). Kick up a fuss and they'll give them to you.


You need to give 31 days notice of a downgrade. If you crossgrade however, this can be done straight away. A crossgrade would be swapping one entertainment pack for another (eg. knowledge for kids) or a premium for a premium (movies 1 for movies 2 or even sports for movies - even though it costs less it still counts because they're both premium channels).

Box Office information is not transmitted to Sky when you order it. The box checks if a telephone line is connected, stores the order on your viewing card and once a month the box phones Sky and downloads all info on the card. If you order a box office then unplug the phone line the order will stay on the card until you plug it in again - this can be years down the line.

Multiroom - both/all boxes need to be connected to the same working telephone line. This makes sure they're all in the same house and you're not splitting the difference with the guy next door. When the boxes phone up once a month the system sees that x boxes are phoning from the same phone number and you keep paying a tenner per extra box. If this doesn't happen you'll be charged the full price for each box. The system that monitors this is pish and can take months to spot that you've unplugged a box. However, it's in the Ts and Cs so you have to do it.
If the "engineer" who fitted it didn't run a phone line to the other boxes it counts as an "incomplete install" and you'll be eligible to have a man come out for free to hook them up even if all your kit is out of warranty.


Avoid SVBN (the sky voice and broadband network). If you have all three services they might try to move you to Sky's own set-up at the exchange. It sounds gucchi as - fibre optics and low contention ratios - but it's more trouble than it's worth. They trialled the system on a few thousand staff then went public with it. As soon as someone moved house the whole system went tits up and they were left without either service for months. This is slowly being fixed but the systems that back up all this nice hardware aren't up to the job. Maybe in a few years it'll work but for the time being ask to opt out of it.

Cancelling/moving home/block due to debt. Broadband and sometimes the Phone will get "stuck" in a status called "pending cancel". This can only be fixed by a form to Sky's internal tech dept. If you find yourself in this situation thell them they need to "raise an IGLS" - they'll know what you're talking about.

Don't just believe it when you're told Sky is cheaper than BT. Look at the details of the package and look at your old phone bills to figure out if it's cheaper for you. The arguement "I want to cancel because you said you're cheaper and you've just billed me £100" doesn't hold any water.

BT controls phone numbers. If Sky promise you can keep your old number they're lying. All they can do is ask nicely. If you want to change your number you have to have a crime number - no exceptions.

Orders for phone and broadband interfere with each other once they're set in motion. Save some hassle and don't let anyone confirm anything until you've explained everything you want to change.


One at a time on each service. If you change your package you may invalidate the offer and it'll be cancelled (there is a workaround for this but most people don't know how to do it and even if they did they're not supposed to).

Offers may not be applied to the service it's advertised as an offer on. For example, 6 months free broadband translated into a £10 credit on the TV subscriptions every month. Because it's all one bill nobody noticed until they add a channel and lose the offer.

Introduce a Friend - you only qualify for this if it's made known at point of sale. No two ways about it.


All phone calls are recorded, or at least they should be. If your calling about an obvious fcuk up then someone on the phone should be able to help you. If you've disputing what someone said or think you've been mis-sold something you'll be referred to to fill in a complaints form and have an old call listened to or something investigated. It's not a run around - serious complaints need everything in writing and it's easier to weed out the time wasters by scanning over an e-mail than by listening to someone winge for 20 minutes on the phone.

That's all that comes to mind for the time being. Although feel free to ask if you've any questions.
i'm going on tour for 7 months in august, my sky package will be useless except for channels envolving designer fannies and screaming mums, can i do a full downgrade or do i have to do steps down to the basic from the full?
They actually do a special dispensation for the armed forces where you can suspend your account on short notice for an indefinite period. I've never dealt with it but the department you're best asking for is called "CSRT".

Although if you've just got the tv and you're out of contract you're as well just cancelling it for the duration.
Tell a lie, I undid it once for some RN type who'd just come back from a 3 week tour of the Solent.

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