We have refined the current arrangements.
Instead of the bad old days when we spent half our lives answering the 'phone for T.Aldous we spend at least half our lives answering every beggar's 'phone.
- Some people put their 'phones through to Maisie's 'phone. They don't tell her, of course until after she's spent hours fielding their calls.
- The 'phones upstairs are set so that if they aren't answered within four rings they come downstairs to Maisie's 'phone. If that's not available they go to Maudie's 'phone.
- The 'phones down here are set so that if they aren't answered within four rings they get sent into a hunt group.
Say, just as an example of course, that somebody upstairs rings downstairs to tell somebody down here there's a 'phone call from a relative. And that somebody decides to ignore their 'phone because they want to hear more about somebody's holiday. And that it the comes to your 'phone. And you try to put the call through to the person who's been ignoring it. But their 'phone has been put through to the lending office 'phone...
This morning's capper? Noreen gets a 'phone call. It's somebody ringing somebody in the library, they don't know who as they've just picked up the telephone number from their answerphone. Noreen does a tour of the floor asking if anybody knows him. Nobody in our office has heard of him so we're baffled. An attempt to ring upstairs to see if anyone up there wants this chappie leads to that call coming back down here. In the end, all Noreen can do is take his name and number and apologise for wasting his time.
I look forward to somebody apologising for wasting ours.