Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Tales from Tech Support- Part 1

For years, I have helped people pick out the right computer to run the software that I support. One method is using quotes directly from a specific computer manufacture, quotes I personally put together to meet and beat all of our system requirements. For years, I have never had a single complaint about one of the machines purchased from a quote. I have heard many compliments and thanks, but no complaints. Until this week.

I have had 2 separate companies contact me to complain about the machine(s) they purchased. Their complaints? Let me break them down.

First complaint was the computers were completely wrong for their needs. Not enough RAM, too small of a hard drive, running Vista Home Premium (instead of Business or XP) and that it only had a CD burner, not a DVD burner. The price we sold the computers for was approximately $1200-$1300. To use the same components on a retail website and build the machine from scratch ( or , it will cost between $1500-$1800. Thats a pretty good discount if you ask me. Their other complaint was that we FORCED them to buy these computers. How you can FORCE someone to spend several thousand dollars by phone is beyond me. They had the order forms, and then faxed them over 3 days later.

The second complaint was that the computer was installed with Vista Home Premium instead of XP. He had the original order form, my confirmation email, the manufacturers email confirmation, and the shipping confirmation email.

My point with both of these complaints is that the order forms were in these peoples hands for a good period of time. The order forms broke down every component of the computers, including what software was preinstalled, what hardware is included, warranty information. Everything. They could have asked to upgrade components or changed the features, but they did not. They had a complete breakdown of what was being offered, purchased it, then said they wanted something else. I can understand if they were not happy with the machine's performance, or if something was broken or missing, but they knew exactly what they were ordering, received the product, then blamed ME for referring to them an inferior product that had features they did not want. The first company acted as though they believed this was the ONLY machine in the world that would run our software, and we forced them to purchase this machine. How can you purchase something, knowing full well what is included, then complain to the store that it doesn't have what you want?!

The 2nd guy ended up being really nice and understood it was his mistake for not reading the order form (Vista is listed as the 3rd item down). However, the first company still believes we peddled them a crappy product, despite the fact they were told over and over again, by phone, in person, and on paper, exactly what was being purchased. One person redeemed themselves with me by realizing it was his mistake, but the other company still thinks we did something wrong. It wasn't even our product we sold, it is a referral to another product.

I just got off the phone with another person, asking about that exact same quote, and she said "I like this model but want some more RAM and a larger hard drive. Can we do that?" "Yes," I told her, "we can. And thank you for asking."

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