Dell Finally Notices Its Poor Service Hurts Sales

from the ya-think? dept

For quite some time, Dell has been getting slammed for its shoddy customer service, something that's contributed to its slowing business and declining market share. But what was obvious to the outside world apparently wasn't clear to the company -- which at one point thought it would be a good idea to remove its toll-free support number from its web site to prevent people from calling -- as it's only recently really moved to improve its service and try to repair its dented reputation. This illustrates one of the downsides of competing largely on price -- when your competitors match, you've got to be prepared to differentiate and compete in other areas, something it looks like Dell's heavy focus on cost-cutting prevented. What's interesting is that many of the reforms Dell's new customer-service boss wants to implement are riffs on its manufacturing procedures, making it even more surprising that nobody noticed before. However, one stock analyst says all the changes (and resultant costs) "sure doesn't help Dell make its quarterly numbers" -- but when its poor service is holding back sales, the company's got little choice.

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  1. identicon
    J.R., 13 Jun 2006 @ 10:49am

    Duh Duh Dell

    I just recently bought my first-ever Dell computer. Before-hand, I'd always and without fail built my own computers. But I get a great deal on Dell computers through my emloyer, and I've been wanting a laptop for some time. I got a great deal, but Dell messed up my order: on the website, they show me getting a free 100 GB hard drive. I ordered a TV Tuner (not a TV Out) card and they gave me a faster processor than I ordered and a free printer for which I had no use whatsoever. Er, thanks? The only way I could get my laptop's hard drive upgraded was to return it to them in their entirety. What? No. I supposedly have in-person support for the first 30 days and then all kinds of mail in support thereafter. But I see that that's not actually the case. Hopefully Dell will live up to their warranty. I just went ahead and kept the lap--top as-is. I figure the difference in processor speed more than makes up for the lack of storage capactiy (I have a large amount of storage on my wirelessly networked desktop and they work fast enough for my tastes).

    I noticed their sales department speaks perfect English, though. The guys in Dubai seemed to be thumb-fingered and couldn't get me to correct department to save their souls.

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