@ZippyV:I have considered this and would have done so if MS had told me that this was the issue a little earlier (it looks as though the validation and error messages that are generated within the banking system result in a lack of clarity as to what is causing a payment to fail). I have suggested that they need to put more validation/guidence messages in the App Hub at the very least.
The truth is I am angry that this has gone on so long without a resulution. In my last email about this issue I highlighted what I saw as the main issues:
ISSUE: I entered the details exactly as they were sent to me from my bank (First Direct) and yet this has been deemed incorrect.
CONCLUSION: There is insufficient information with regards to the British banking system within the process itself. (From a user perspective First Direct is the name of the bank, not HSBC)
RESOLUTION: The form should be validated on submission such that IDs and Bank names are cross checked and flagged to the user at the time of submission if they are deemed to be 'incorrect' (A batch check overnight with an email follow up would also be acceptable). NB In the short term a note to the effect that Bank Name relates to the body that owns the bank, rather than the bank itself might be advisable.
ISSUE: I independently forwarded the details I received from First Direct to you as proof that I had entered the details correctly.
CONCLUSION: The details I sent were not properly checked (I believe this should have led to the issue being resolved at the time)
RESOLUTION: A Training or Process issue?
ISSUE: I have had responses from several different people dealing with the same issue.
CONCLUSION: This gives the impression to the customer that there is a lack of 'issue ownership' within the process.
RESOLUTION: Issues that are likely to lead to major customer frustration should be owned by a single person who sees the issue through to its conclusion.
ISSUE: I have had to raise this same issue repeatedly every month
CONCLUSION: The issue is not being correctly resolved - no intermediate bank runs or checks were being done (it should not be necessary to wait a month for issues like this to be checked)
RESOLUTION: Intermediate bank runs need top be authorised and set up?
For what it is worth I have always been impressed with the profesionalism and efficiency with which Microsoft have dealt with me in the past. This is by far the worst experience I have had to date.
I should add that we are not talking about big bucks here - I would guess that there are only a handfull of developers who are making what might be considered by some to be 'a living' writing apps for WP7 - I am certainly not one of them (even if I was being paid).