Posts Tagged ‘Dell’

My Dell Hell Part 5: The Resolution

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

The situation with Dell has been resolved. Bill, the guy who wasn’t responding to my emails did respond after I started putting up blog posts about Dell. If you read the comments section you can see that he says that he thought he had responded before but apparently had not hit send.

The cynical bones in my body, and there are many, were screaming: Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire!.  At first I strongly felt that he only responded because I went public. But since then I have talked to him. There is something about having a real conversation with another human. Either he made a couple of really bonehead moves in not responding to my emails and it truly was just human error, or he just didn’t take me seriously and intentionally blew off the emails.

When I talked to Bill I did not hear any animosity in his voice. He seemed very embarrassed to have screwed up and wanted to make things right. I’m going to take him at his word on that. If I’m wrong, than kudos to Bill for his acting abilities.

Since then Bill has been bending over backwards to clear up my concerns.

So here is the resolution to my 3 questions in part 4.

1. Why was I told that I should call back on or after September 22.

Our best guess is that the rep wanted me to call back after the Insperion had been processed through their system.  I have another email, about another part that says it takes 10 days to process a customer return, that would be Sept. 13. Still not sure why the rep chose that particular date of Sept. 22. It’s minor and not worth researching.

2. Will you refund the $126.29 difference between the price I was quoted and the price I was charged.

This one created a technical challenge. Complicated story of 3rd party companies, tax issues with no retale stores in my state, etc. You would think any company would be able to simply cut a check or refind a credit card. But at a large corporation level it’s not always that simple. They were not refusing to do it, just complicated.

Bill asked if there was any product I might be in need of. As it happens, I was outgrowing my hard drive. So we found a solution that worked for both of us.

3. Why are your employees not allowed to put anything in writing? They seem to want to help but are not being allowed to. Do they even work for you or are you farming out the work to some other company?

The part about them farming out the work was just me being snarky. I know every big company does this to some extent. My main concern was the apparent policy of not allowing employees to put promises in writing.

Bill assures me that there is no such policy. He also assures me that they will be taking measures internally to make sure the reps understand that if they are making a verbal agreement they should be willing to put it in writing for the customer.

So readers, here is what I want from you: if you are having trouble with Dell I want to know about it. Help me keep their feet to the fire. Don’t go off on the reps, they are just doing their jobs and yelling at them won’t get you anywhere. Be polite, be reasonable, and take lots and lots of notes. Use if it’s available to you (currently in beta).

Then tell me about it. I am satisfied with my situation but if they are just giving me the brush off and continuing to do this to others, I want to know about it.

PJ Show #021 – IT Conversations – Call in (714) 855-2639

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

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My Dell Hell Part 3

Monday, September 15th, 2008

During the tech support problems of part 1 I was tweeting my troubles with Dell. I searched hoping Dell is smart enough to have a presents on twitter. Well, they are smart enough to have someone there but not smart enough to have that person be responsive to complaints.

The person I found was Lionel Menchaca, Chief Blogger for Dell Inc. He was not very responsive to me on twitter but he did pass my information on to Bill Bivin who didn’t contact me until August 27, after Dell sent me the replacement laptop.

Bill introduced himself as the laptop liaison but his email signature says he is the “Community Liaison” with “Dell Communities & Conversions”. Seemed like just the person to help me with my warranty extension problems.

On September 3 I sent him an email detailing the problems I described in part 2 and told him that I was beginning to feel like I was getting the run around. I was concerned that if I don’t get the problem resolved before the grace period will ran out than I would not be able to get the warranty. I also told him that I was beginning to wonder if that was by design on Dell‘s part.

I got no response.

On September 5 I sent him this:

Hello Bill,

I wanted to give you an update and request that you respond. Yesterday was the last day for me to extend my warranty.

I called and left a message on the extension Jennifer had given me as well as the one I got from Mike. I also sent an email to Mike stating that I would like to continue attempting to extend my warranty. No response from either of them.

I called again for a random Customer service person and got Marcus XXXXXX. We went through the same routine trying to clear this up. He put me on hold for a while then said it was taking longer than expected and could he call me back.

I forwarded the email I had from DHL which confirms that Dell has received the Insperion. He assured me that once the inspirion was processed through their system he would wave the $50 fee an extend the warranty even though the 7 day grace period was over. He also assured me that he would be working today and that he would get back to me today.

I sent him an email asking him to confirm my understanding of our conversation and he did not respond. I’m getting lots of verbal promises but when I ask for written confirmation I get no response.

I called and emailed Marcus today and got an email auto response saying that he would be out of the office today.

I called back and got another random customer service person, Mel, extension XXXXXXX. This is person number 4. After going through the same routine…again… she said that I had to wait until 9-22 and I was to call back on or after that date.

This makes no sense at all. It very much appears that Dell is giving me the run around in an attempt to put things off and make sure I won’t be able to extend the warranty. Has Dell already forgotten Jeff Jarvis. I know you got him to come to Dell and write a more positive article but those of us having trouble with Dell‘s customer service have not forgotten.

Remember Satisfied Customers Tell Three Friends, Angry Customers Tell 3,000. Frustrated customers now have options. Needless to say, you can consider this email to be the ruff draft of a blog post, forum posts and probably comments on many other blog posts. Dell will also be getting a mention on my podcast.  I also have a nice following on Twitter where I will start talking about my problems with Dell…again.

I may not have a Jeff Jarvis size audience but I do have an audience and they all have computers.

He still has not responded.

More to come in part 4

My Dell Hell, Part 1

Sunday, September 14th, 2008

I started having trouble with my Dell Insperion on August 10, 2008 I contacted chat tech support from Hubby’s computer to report that I was getting a blue screen of death. 3 techs and 5 hours later at almost 2 in the morning we decided that I would have to wipe the disk and reinstall the operating system.

I’m not complaining about the 5 hours. It’s to the tech’s credit that they were willing to try everything before telling me that I may have to lose all my data.

The Dell techs have always been patent and polite. I should know, I’ve spent many, many hours on phone and chat with them. I try to return the courtesy and remember that no matter how frustrated I am with their company, they are doing their jobs and most of them are willing to go the extra mile for me if Dell is not tying their hands.

Due to the late hour I was not prepared to start a project like reinstalling the operating system so we ended the chat.

I spent the next day double checking that all my kids pictures and important documents were backed up. I contacted them again on August 12.

I got a fantastic tech, Margaret. She started to walk me through the process and made sure I had all the appropriate disks and downloaded the appropriate driver. While we were doing this the computer shut down on it’s own at random times.

The chat had taken longer than I expected 2 hrs. Again, not complaining about that, these techs go over the top to make sure I don’t lose my data and I appreciate that. However, I had a playgroup to get to and she wanted to research the mysterious shut down problem so we ended the chat.

When I got back to Margaret that afternoon she had found the problem. Like I said, when Dell allows them to they do their jobs well. I’m a big fan of the Tech Support people. Individually, as people, they are awesome. How they got hired by Dell I will never understand.

The laptop needed a new hard drive, system board and processor.

I have “Next Day, Onsite Service” Warranty. Paid a very pretty penny for it too. Lots of pretty pennies. I’ve had to use this several times in the past so I know that the “next day” is not exactly accurate. The tech rarely receives the parts next day.

This was happening on the 12th and I was leaving for Los Vegas to attend the New Media Expo the next day, Wednesday. I would be there Thursday and Friday so I arranged for a tech to meet me there and dragged my non working Laptop to the NME with me.

The tech did show up and installed the new parts on Thursday August 14. That night I tried to install the operating system with no luck. Contected tech support by phone. Long story short, after replacing just about everything except the fan, the fan needs to be replaced. It was running hot and causing the laptop to go in a continuous cycle as I tried to start up. So I dragged my laptop and all the install files all the way to Vegas for nothing.

This was Thursday night. No way to get the part to the tech on Fri and they don’t count Saturday or Sunday. I arranged for the part to be sent to a tech in CA for Monday delivery and repair.

Monday came and went along with a call from the tech saying that not all of the parts arrived so he would not be able to do the repair until Tuesday. Thursday to Tuesday = 6 days! NEXT DAY SERVICE MY ASS!

It was late Thursday so I’ll give them a one day pass but still Friday to Tuesday is hardly “next day service”.

I arranged for the tech to meet my hubby at work on Tuesday with the computer since I would be out and about with the kids and didn’t think playgroup at the park with 8 toddlers would be the ideal setting for computer repair.

The tech replaced the parts but the laptop auto shut down upon start up. They started it up again and it appeared to be working. So Hubby started the OS install process. That night I tried to finish the process. I contacted Dell support again to find out what the driver order should be. While I was on with Support the computer shut down…multiple times.

Fortunately the tech who did the repair earlier that day had made an incident report about the laptop shutting down so there was proof that I am not a lying cheating customer, just trying to get a free replacement laptop.

After leaving me with no computer during the one and only tech related conference I will attend this year, they finally agreed to send a replacement. Remember I have the Super Duper Wazoo, Covers Everything, We will fix it NEXT DAY, warranty! With out that I wouldn’t have gotten anything.

Finally, a replacement laptop was on it’s way. But that is not the end of the story. No, not the end at all. I am still not a happy customer. But this blog post is long enough, it’s getting late and I’m tired of typing. Look for part two coming soon.