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Customer Service

Submitted by on Monday, 8 May 2006

I recently had a computer meltdown. I suspect I had some spyware. Whatever it was, I was in deep doo doo. I called Dell and ended up spending one hour and 22 minutes trying to get to the right person who could help me, given I was out of warranty, etc. In any case, I timed it, having had a long history of problems with Dell. By the time I got to the right person, I realize – o horror – that I no longer had a Dell (precisely because of their customer service) but now had a Compaq. I got off the phone immediately, then called
Compaq. Within 4 minutes, I got to the right person, and about 6 minutes later my problem was resolved. And that is why I switched to Compaq.
Companies forget that we have a lot of choices these days, and they
absolutely must be taking care of their clients. I recently was working with a very difficult fulfillment house – Integrated Fulfillment Services out of Floral Park, Long Island – and ended up having to leave them to find another vendor. My materials were often sent weeks late after a promise of a 3 day turnaround, sent by the most expensive delivery imaginable ($79 for FedEx rather than the exact same service at USPO for $14), and no communication
(making decisions on their own without telling me, waiting to send material because they assumed the receiver didn’t need it, etc). They ended up costing me many thousands of dollars in lost business and good will. And when I removed my material, they charged me an exorbitant sum to ship the material and waited weeks before doing so, knowing that I couldn’t fulfill my client needs until the new fulfillment house got the material.
How do companies exist, not truly caring about their customers? How do they let customers leave with bad will, feeling abused? Even if the problem can have no resolution, at least to have a dialogue to see if there can be some sort of win-win and as few bad feelings as possible.
We all have choices these days. It’s time for good customer service to become part of our brands.