Customer Service

Discussion in 'OT (OFF Topic) Forums' started by trainer, May 12, 2011.

  1. trainer

    trainer MB Enthusiast

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    I bought a product from PC world after talking to one of the salesmen. He agreed that I could return the product if it wasn't suitable. I tried it and it didn't rectify the problem.

    I duly returned to the store armed with the item back in it's original packaging with the receipt and the car I had paid on - she be a doddle I thought.

    Went to the Tech Guys counter where they do returns and joined the end of the queue. After standing patiently for 10 minutes not moving a bloke joined the back of the line. After another 5 minutes we started talking about the fact that lots of other staff were around and not serving customers yet never came over to help. Eventually the one guy behind the counter called for assistance and the queue reduced. I may seem impatient but over 20 minutes waiting in a queue of 4 seems excessive.

    Having got my refund I marched off to talk to the manager. I asked politely why when there were many other people on the shop floor and not with customers we had to wait. He said the refunds was another department and that everyone else was busy. I again explained that groups of 3 staff at a time were talking together and not serving customers. He denied they were and that was that. No sorry sir we will look at this and try to improve etc.

    Having managed single and multi site operations where customer service is key I found his response poor to say the least.
     
  2. Rich27

    Rich27 Active Member

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    Those other staff you may have seen could have been mere shelf stackers, as you would know from managing single and multi site operations, the person running the refunds till will need certain training to be able to access the computers sales log and be able to refund you on your card.
    The other guys may have just been on minimum wage and be being told where to put the paper and other consumables.

    Sorry that there was a que and you had to wait but you did get your money back for a product that you had used.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2011
  3. jepho

    jepho Active Member

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    There is the problem, right there. :D

    Customer service training is obviously an issue at PC World. In any of their stores (I have probably visited ten of them on occasion) I have found a staff presence that are unwilling and uninterested in the customers and from that observation, I can only conclude that they are being treated poorly and not paid very well. It is the air of quiet desperation with which the PC World staff appear to be imbued (probably done at whichever sausage factory handles their training) that I find utterly dispiriting.

    Walking into an Apple store reveals a very different ethic: :bannana:

    Discuss
     
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  4. Spinal

    Spinal MB Enthusiast

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    Training?! What training?

    I think you'll find that most staff on minimum wage wont be that happy...

    On a side note, you've gotta love Apple's management techniques... A while ago, staff in their Chinese factory were jumping out of windows (something about working in 16 hour shifts with "timeshare beds". So while you work, your colleagues sleep in your bed, and while they work, you sleep...). Apple's solution? Ask employees to sign letters stating that they will not commit suicide and put nets under the windows so that the people who tried to commit suicide wouldn't die!

    m.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2011
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  5. swannymere

    swannymere Active Member

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    Oh dear lord, the Apple haters will be out for you now!

    At least Apple sorted it quickly, Microsoft would be having blue-sky thinking huddles about it for months. ;)
     
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  6. Spinal

    Spinal MB Enthusiast

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    Actually, apple pays it's "geniuses" quite well... IIRC, the entry salary was $17 an hour (in the US), up to $25 an hour in larger cities...

    That's $200 a day, or $1000 a week ($4000 a month) for an 8-hour working day... I wouldn't be complaining either ;)

    I'm curious as to what they pay in the UK... may apply for a job just to find out :p
     
  7. jepho

    jepho Active Member

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    Common sense would tell me that Apple Inc's control over Chinese labour would have been minimal. I don't believe that the Chinese authorities would have approved of western ideals permeating the burgeoning industrial growth of China.

    Bring on the haters, eh? :D
     
  8. whitenemesis

    whitenemesis MB Club Veteran

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    I wonder how many hours they actually work? I'm guessing far more if they want their (often very short-term) contract renewed.
     
  9. SPX

    SPX MB Club Veteran

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    Apple are missing a trick here; release an App called-

    iHateApple

    It would sell by the thousand!:devil:
     
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  10. Spinal

    Spinal MB Enthusiast

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    That I can't answer... My hours used to be VERY flexible... one day I would go home after 4 hours working, while the next I was there 12 hours (or more)...

    Then again, I wasn't an apple genius, but a sysadmin... and I didn't get paid by the hour!

    M.
     
  11. whitenemesis

    whitenemesis MB Club Veteran

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    Pretty much my experience of working in California (Oh, the blue skies, warm sun ...) In work by 06:00 away by 12:00, if I stretched it out that long :rolleyes: Other days I didn't see daylight .... :(
     
  12. grober

    grober MB Master

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    That would be the wallet emptying ethic then. :rolleyes:
     
  13. jepho

    jepho Active Member

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    I was merely suggesting that the OP compares the attitudes of the sales staff of one technology enterprise with another. The point behind mentioning Apple factory staff suicides in China, when discussing PC World staff conduct in the UK, escapes me.

    Of course, we should never let facts get in the way of a good story and when we learn that Foxconn was the Chinese enterprise where some 13 staff had committed suicide... we should provide the balance by explaining that there was a visit by Tim Cook (COO for Apple) to China. He was accompanied by two (Apple recruited) leading experts in suicide prevention and it was widely publicised... and completely at odds with the one-sided picture which you have painted, failing to mention Dell or Nokia, who also just happen to use the manufacturing facilities provided by Foxconn. Apple also commissioned an independent review by a broader team of of suicide prevention experts.

    If you want to rail against anything done by Apple, please provide as much relevant information as possible and leave the observers to make up their own minds.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2011
  14. jepho

    jepho Active Member

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    Ho hum... ;)
     
  15. Spinal

    Spinal MB Enthusiast

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    But the story is so much juicier without all the facts! ;)

    Going by your logic, you have failed to mention Nintendo and a few others that Foxconn make "things" for ;)

    M.
     
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  16. Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    Lucky they refunded. I know of people who had a tough time once the celophane (spelling?) had been removed.
     
  17. jepho

    jepho Active Member

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    Apple were as near to bankrupt as it is possible to be and still be trading in 1997. Now... they have their reward for providing products that people can use. A fair price for a fair product is not robbery. The total cost of ownership of Apple computing products is very reasonable. I don't have any problem with the success of Apple. It was clearly hard earned and the company have revolutionised several areas of personal computing that needed it.

    The oligarchy of the mobile phone companies was completely turned upside down by the iPhone and the deals that Apple did with their initial iPhone service suppliers, thereby making data retrieval cheap and easy. The iTunes services have removed much of the grasping hand of the record industry and it is possibly to buy a single tune from an album collection now. The notion that one needs a computing science background to use a computer well has also been dispelled by the choice of a GUI underpinned by Unix.

    If all of these things were just marketing fluff and there was no substance to them, why are people buying them in droves? Why has the IT industry copied Apple's designs and ideas en masse? I don't feel cheated when I buy Apple products and I always get good value from them. YMMV :D
     
  18. jepho

    jepho Active Member

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    :doh: Sorry... I was trying to be sensible. I wont do it again. :D

    /slinks away quietly; in embarrassment :eek:

    These columns are not the place for an essay. ;)
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2011
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  19. Spinal

    Spinal MB Enthusiast

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    no, No, NO! This is an internet forum, it's no place to be sensible :p

    Here, let me help with a few religious topics to get you started:

    - Nintendo or PS3? (we won't even consider the xbox as it's useless :p)
    - Coca-Cola or Mountain Dew? (Pepsi is just a bad copy of coke)
    - Mercedes-Benz or Ducati? (BM-What?)
    - Windows or Linux? (Apple is just Unix with a different GUI)
    - Star Wars Original or that crappy CGI new stuff?
    - Star Trek Original or that crappy new CGI stuff?

    See the trend? You need to find some highly religious, very meaningful and sensitive topic. The sort of thing that is life changing if you go with one side or the other.

    You then need to stick by that side no matter what. NEVER admit defeat. NEVER admit you are wrong, or heaven forbid, that your side made a mistake.

    Patience young padawan... patience... all will come with time ;)

    M.
     
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  20. Rory

    Rory MB Enthusiast

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    Blimey. Next we'll be told off for making comments about Mercedes.
     
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