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
    Jon, 16 Nov 2012 @ 5:59am

    Dell Customer Service- The worse i have ever experienced

    My mum is a user of Dell Datasafe on-line. Think she paid about 35 for the subscription. She is nearly 70 and uses PC's for work, but like many of us finds it difficult when things go wrong.

    Her old PC has broken and is now unusable. So she bought a new one and for the past week has been trying to restore the files from Dell Datasafe on-line. She has found this impossible. She asked me if I could help out. I read all the help files and also failed to solve the problem, despite deinstalling and reinstalling all required software, adding new PC's etc and trying pretty much everything I could think off. Suffice to say that Dell Datasafe on line is far from being user friendly.

    This morning I phoned Dell customer support for some much needed help. It was the worst customer experience of my life. And lets face it expectations of service are generally pretty low these days. The operator spent most of the conversation trying to get me to give her the service tag from my PC; despite my protestations that I was calling about Dellsafe Online which to me is software and therefore not really a hardware issue.

    I was viewing my mums PC remotely using Teamviewer from a Mac to try and help out. As soon as they heard the word mac they instantly referred me to the Apple helpdesk and tried to get me off the phone as quickly as possible. Appalling. On my request, my case was referred to a supervisor who agreed with the operator that they could not help as they were not a software company and I needed to call Apple. I got quite angry. They finally said they would transfer me to the software support team, which didn't exist just seconds earlier. Then they cut me off.

    If they could have just provided some basic on line trouble shooting information, or provided their call centre operatives with basic product information that would have been a start. If they could have let me know what caused the error codes then this could have helped me find my own solution. Not unreasonable as this is a paid for service afterall - so some support for a technical product needs to be provided.. If Dell don't want to support this service then I would suggest that they either a) make it free b) cease offering it.

    So the Average Speed of Answer/Grade of service figures for the Dell call centre will remain intact. No doubt the management team will give themselves a pat on the back at their next meeting for how well their service centres are performing and for how much money they have saved through global outsourcing. I didn't even bother to call again as you could tell that this was service so bad that any sort of repair or resolution to the problem was beyond realistic expectations.

    My family's relationship with Dell is over for ever. I am now looking in to using Carbonite for data back up and will never buy a Dell product again based on service alone. I wrote this an alternative to an angry complaint to make myself feel better. Won't even go into what is wrong with the service as I suspect that the the company must be well aware of the problems and know how to fix them, but couldn't care less. The end.

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