Collective POS Solutions - the worst customer service ever

POS stands for point of sale. But you will be not too far from the truth if you thought about different meaning of these three letters. As a small business owner I experienced it firsthand. From initial screw-up by sleazy salesman Adam to numerous conversations with customer service representative by name Cecilia whose IQ is probably lower than the brick wall. Any attempts to reach customer service manager were unsuccessful. It seems like he or she spends time only in the meetings all day long. At least that what I was told every time I asked to speak with the manager.
After the whole year of rip-off I finally decided to get rid of this company. Oh well, it’s not so easy. Collective POS is now part of Elavon - the largest North American payments provider. The acquisition was completed in February 2013, however Collective POS continue to operate on its own. The charges on merchant account show Elavon name but are processed by Collective POS. If you are not dizzy yet here is some more info. Elavon does not charge fee for the paper statement which they send out every month. They also have electronic statement option where the statement can be retrieved from the merchant on-line account. But Collective POS probably decided that they do not make enough money on the unsuspected customers and introduced a statement fee of $10. That is in addition to the wireless terminal rent fee, wireless access fee, card association fee, card authorization fee, card processing fee etc.
It cannot be any more complicated. Or maybe it can because right now there is another fee - for the statement. I called Cecilia and said that I don’t need their statement to be sent to me and asked to take this charge off. She said that they can only reduce it to $5 but they cannot take it off even if I don’t need it. So I asked to cancel my account. She said that I need to return their wireless terminal and sign cancellation forms for Collective POS and Elavon.
Two forms were sent to me but only one had a signature field at the bottom which I signed and hand delivered terminal to their office in Toronto on May 2, 2014. Two days later I received a phone call from Cecilia telling me that the terminal belongs to Elavon and has to be sent to them. I guess everyone would reasonably assume that if Collective POS is part of Elavon for more than a year and have Elavon name all over their Toronto office, i.e. they are the same company, they can send this terminal internally. Not so fast. They cannot do it. Why? No explanation. Just that this is the policy. OK.
I went back to their office, picked up the terminal, contacted Elavon for shipping instructions and sent the terminal to Elavon, which they received 5 days later. I called Elavon to ask what else I need to do to cancel my account and was told that this is it. Nothing else and the account will be closed within few days. Remember that all started on May 2. On May 14 I received an email from Gina in Elavon saying that they received request for cancellation but did not receive a signed form. I call Collective POS for inquires and they said that the forms were sent to Elavon on May 2. Nevertheless I emailed the forms again myself to Gina and received electronic read receipt.
Assuming that all is good now I was shocked to see a service charge billed to my account for the month of May when I physically did not have a terminal nor did I use their services anymore. I started again my phone calls to both companies and was told that there is a missing signature on one form. But there was only one signature field which I signed on one form. It was revealed later that there was another signature field on the second form but not at the bottom as usual. It was in the middle of the form making it much like a small print field and I simply missed it. So for the entire month nobody in either company had a courtesy of following up on the fact that there was an omitted signature. Why would they? They could charge extra money because without the signature they could not close my account.
After numerous emails back and forth the account was eventually closed and I was promised a refund. The fee charged was $63.89 for the services that were not provided at all, and I reasonably expected to get the same amount back which I was promised to see on my account within 5 business days. It took the entire month and finally on July 2 they posted a refund of… $44.99. Why is that? Where is the difference of $18.90? I was told by Cecilia that because they offered me to lower statement fee to $5 that is what they refund. How do you like this? They can charge you $10 but refund only $5? And the rest? I was told: “Sorry…there is nothing we can do”.
It is not about this small amount of money any longer. It is about principle. I want as many people as possible to know about this company and its shoddy practices. I want people to stay away from them. They do not deserve our business. We work very hard for our money and we do not need Collective POS to take it from us.
I guess I’m not the only one who has problem with this company. Although they are not members of BBB there were 76 complaints filed against this company and their rating is C-.
Feel free to repost this anywhere you like to give it as much exposure as possible. I will also repost it on social media in every place I can.


It’s just that simple.

No issues. Instant email receipts. Custom automated price list. 10 minutes to set up AND the card reader is the size of a toonie.

Try it and never worry again!


That is what I’m using now and very happy with it. But Collective POS has more than 12000 businesses that they rip-off every year. I want people to know this.

Thanks I am sure glad I went with square also.

Somebody should start a thread dedicated to listing the SCUMBAG Vendors we run into. I have one to add to the list, but won’t in this thread. I don’t want to take away from Yuri’s announcement of this SCUMBAG.

Jeff, I think this is a very good idea. Knowing the power of Google we can reach many people who may be unaware about sleazy salesmen or complete lack of customer service in various organizations that otherwise look very much normal. Another thing is our nature to find “a good deal” that in reality may not be so good. Unfortunately people rarely learn from their mistakes but maybe they can learn from our bad experiences.

Excellent point, as my “nominee” for such a list began in Nachi a few years ago, screwed over a respected inspector, and got “run off”. He recently returned only to get “run off” again. He surfaced at another Association with a great idea for a co-op type program that many inspectors invested in (myself included). That was in roughly March/April 2014. To this day NOTHING has been delivered by this vendor. I requested my money back, and he claimed he didn’t have any to pay me. When pushed a week later, he replied to file a complaint with PayPal. Unfortunately, he kept pushing to get past the initial 45 days, so Paypal won’t do anything. I, like you, intend to spread the word about this unsavory SCUMBAG vendor. His name, you ask? Robert Humphries!

Yes, there’s more to the story, but I’ll save it for another thread!

Yes please start another thread regarding RH. Inquiring minds want to know.

Agreed i read old posts about him from years ago. When he came back, I found his services to be dated and unimaginative. Sorry to hear about your loss Jeff.

Nick, how about a new thread page on warnings for members?

It didn’t take too long to find out how Collective POS ripped off other customers.
That is the power of Google.

For those Inspectors in Ontario we have managed to secure a really good deal with Moneris. Better prices than Square or PayPal, (even taking into account the rental) no tie in contract and allows you to take debit. We are just waiting for the first machines, which are Bluetooth and tether to your smart phones. Watch this space.

What do you mean by better prices? Are you talking about the percentage they take off each transaction because you can’t be talking about the cost.

You never got your money back Yuri?
Nor did I.

$600+ dollars.
They still send me monthly statements asking for payment?
Elavon point of sales POS
My bank closed the account, a binding contract, once they saw the contract I drafted up promoting them for INACHI members.
I could get out of the contract any time.

Until then you were locked in for 3 years or paid a fee to get out. Big fee. Over $1,200.
INACHI Members were to get a rate they would personally negotiate.
The client service agent I dealt with quit Elavon not long after.

Elavon is two parts. A Canadian entity and an American entity.
The American entity were easy to deal with.
The Canadian entity was not though.
They changed the look but they can’t change their spots.

Under the government of Stephen Harper nothing is done.

Send your complaints off to:
Better Business Bureau
In Quebec you have to go to,…Office de la protection du consommateur. Don’t waste your time.
Office of Consumer Affairs (OCA)

I was lied by Quebec’s association of consumer protection. No joke!
They did not even have an office.
The were advertising the old BBB office and an office number that was an answering machine.
The legal business address they posted was the old BBB address.

I went to pay them in person.
WHY? Something sounded funny. They would not let me go to there office.
Only an recorded message.

I should have reported the Quebec association to the BBB ha ha ha
I guess the shine is off of then as well right Keven?
God what a world.

Len, Moneris is the biggest player. Do not expect any great deals. The canadian POS system are run by the financial sector.
If you can do 8+ thousand a month on a twelve month bases they may drop your rate.

I concur!

BTW you can’t get smaller than square either I don’t think anyways. Less than a one inch square not including the insert pin that looks like an ear phone jack.:wink:

We did a full spectrum cost analysis of multiple services. The costs are based on the type of card you are taking, whether it is swiped or keyed and how many inspections you perform each month.

If you only take qualified cards, only swiped with customer present, then yes Square came out $38 dollars cheaper per month than the next best (based on 4 inspections per week at $375 per inspection)

If you work on an average of 45% qualified, 45% unqualified (premium card) and 10% CNP (Cardholder not present or manually entered because the swipe wouldn’t work) then Moneris came out $20 cheaper than Square. If you took debit, then Square and PayPal wouldn’t work for you, and Moneris beat the other services by nearly $40 per month.

As your inspections increase (either in number or price) and the payments lean toward debit or premium cards the saving definitely swing in the favour of the Moneris solution.

So if you tell your clients that you will not accept debit, and will only accept qualified cards (non-premium or loyalty) cards, and you reject the use of a card that won’t swipe demanding only cash or cheque, OR you only do no more than 2 inspections per week, certainly I would agree with you, square is cheaper.

If you want to have clients have their choice of payment solutions, including Cheque, Debit, Cash, and any credit card they want, and you perform 4 or more inspections a week and you are not one of these $100 inspection inspectors then the Moneris solution is the best out of the eight we looked at.

Contact me by email and I’ll send you the spreadsheet that compares the top 4. Yuo can then play with you own figures. (It’s slightly out of date because PayPal charges in Canada have just increased and I haven’t factored those changes into the spreadsheet, so they will fare even worse.)

Len, you have no means of knowing beforehand which card is qualified and which is not. I can tell you from my experience with Collective POS that I had probably 90% of the cards that were not qualified despite that their sleazy salesman told me that this would be only 10-15%. I offered debit and there were only few people who wanted to pay by debit card. The majority of the clients prefer credit because they collect points on each transaction. Besides AMEX was excluded since their charges were completely ridiculous. What I like about Square that you don’t need to think what card you process because all of them including AMEX have the same rate when you swipe them. Non-swiped card transaction costs slightly more.

There is no way on planet earth that I would get into Debit machines.

At the end of the day, what works for you is the right solution. I’m not trying to sell the Moneris solution.

I’m just saying that for those who don’t have a solution, we’ve done the legwork and can prove that the costs for the moneris program we’ve arranged, for a full-time inspector who wants to provide payment solutions for debit and credit cards and doesn’t want a honking great machine that’s tied to a telephone plan, with it’s attributable costs, is more than competitive when you look at the whole solution.

I used square too, but have found as my work increased, and the fact I’m doing more mould/asbestos/radon inspections which are a lower cost but more numerous, the Square solution was becoming expensive, on average adding around $10 to the cost of each inspection, and I didn’t get an HST/GST statement from them so it was coming right off my bottom line. (i.e. profit)

Also the support was a bit naf, and I went through 7 Square readers because they are so flimsy. Although I have to admit, the newer ones seemed to be more robust and reliable. (Still managed to have 2 of them fail)