Saturday, March 1, 2008

I've figured it out...

I know what causes baldness.

No. Really.

You may have heard that it's a result of hormones...but I don't think that's right. It comes from the hair-pulling, desk/head-banging experiences that people have to go through!

After reading The Rock Chick's thread I Swear (Warning: Strong, but necessary language!), I felt inspired to share something that I went through during the past couple of days.

You see, I work for a franchisee of a well known Quick Service Restaurant (read: Fast Food) chain. I am the IT Manager and I handle things like point-of-sale systems, surveillance systems, back office PCs, dining room music, drive-through audio...things like that. My team and I (read: both of us) not only maintain the equipment, but we put it into the new stores our company is building. In order to DO that, you have to purchase the equipment...enter another well known chain...Best (read: Worst) Buy.

Before I go off on my little rant, let me just say that I am prone to swearing off stores for bad experiences. I expect the highest levels of customer service and when I don't get what I expect I get very angry, turn it all inward, make a mountain out of a molehill and write the company and tell them I will never shop with them again. I even reported one online business to the BBB in the last couple of weeks due to the complete and utter ineptitude of their service, but that's a different blog for a different day. I have not yet completely decided whether or not Best Buy will be my next boycott, but let me tell my tale.

Oh, one other quick note: the sequence that leads to this story sounds like it's made up, but I SWEAR to you it's true. Like I said...I'm an IT Manager. I know that most of the time when people claim what I'm about the claim it's a P.I.C.N.I.C (problem in chair not in computer) or a bad infestation of the U.S.E.R. (no acronym, just fun to say it that way) virus.

So we (read: my assistant) went to the local Best Buy to purchase some equipment we needed. He called me from the location to tell me that he found a variant of what we needed to use that might serve us better and because one was discontinued and the other was opened, he was going to get them for a discounted price! EXCELLENT - I love being able to get things cheaper. The sales associate explained to him the difference between what we normally get and what we would be getting and it sounded like it could save us some shopping and some money, so I figured, sure...why not? Oh...except one thing he'll need to go with it isn't in he goes to Circuit City.

At Circuit City he explains to the sales associate what he is looking for and why and what he will be using it with and for and the sales associate explains that what the Best Buy associate sold him was not what the Best Buy associate TOLD him it was. After deciding that the Circuit City guy knew what he was talking about (and after deciding that must be the reason the other piece of equipment was returned the first time!) he returned the equipment to Best Buy and got what we were looking for from Circuit City...except that part that he went to Circuit City for originally - because it was not in stock there either.

So - he goes back to the good ol' internet and tries to place an order on the Best Buy website for in-store pick up at a location 3 hours away (where we are building the restaurant) since we will be there in the early part of next week. No luck. The item is not available for in-store pick-up. No big's still a few days away...we'll just have it delivered our restaurant location nearest where we are building.

Long intro - I know...that's what started it.

I got the confirmation email the next morning saying that the order was placed, but not yet shipped. I looked at the address - it was not the location we agreed to send it to. It was another location in the same city - no big deal - but I asked my assistant "So you decided to have it delivered to Boca Chica after all?" (Boca Chica is what we call the restaurant located on the street name "Boca Chica")

"No - I had it sent to Padre" (the location on Padre Island Hwy)

"It says here 'Boca Chica'."

So here I am thinking to myself that perhaps it's possible he got confused and entered the wrong address...but he swears he entered the right address. He's a smart guy...I don't like doubting he did what he's telling me he did. I look again at the address...something's not right. The address has the STREET NAME of Boca Chica, but the STREET NUMBER is of our Padre Island Highway location. something REALLY seems it possible he got in a hurry and entered the street number of one and the street name of the other? Trust much as it sounds that MUST be the ABSOLUTELY WAS NOT. Best Buy CHANGED THE ADDRESS.

Ok...maybe Best Buy didn't change it, but their system did. I SWEAR IT DID! It changed ONLY the street name! I went into the online account we used to place the order and added a "ship to:" address and proceeded to enter the correct address...clicked save...and now had TWO instances of the wrong address. I did it a third time to make sure that I didn't do something I had THREE instances of the wrong address!!! So...I deleted them, because, what good would any of the wrong address serve me? I called Best Buy.

To make an already very long story as short as possible, I then proceeded to go back and forth between Best Buy and UPS while trying to get the address corrected. Best Buy would only tell me "Since it's already in the 'shipping' state, we can't make any changes to the address," and then tell me that my only option was to call UPS. I've been through this before...I knew they wouldn't let me change anything since I'm not the shipper. I told Best Buy this...they cared not. "Call UPS" they said.

So I did.

And it sucked.

I explained the story to UPS. Did they care? Well, they seemed to...but there was nothing they could do as I was the not the shipper. This did not surprise me.

Back and forth - probably 10-15 phone calls and my desperately and KINDLY trying to get SOMEONE to help me. My last conversation with UPS ended up with them telling me the only way that I can change the address is after they make the first delivery attempt and it fails.

This is true...I said this to them...

"Look, I don't have a problem with that. I have no problem, whatsoever, in picking up the item at your location. MY concern is that the delivery will NOT fail. I have no idea what's at the location that your driver is going to go to. It could be an empty plot of land. There could be A COW standing there ready to accept the package. Or, it could be a legitimate residence or business and there could be someone there who is NOT expecting a package, but when they see that it's from Best Buy they will gladly accept it. It's not like the driver is going to require a signature, and if they do, they're not going to ask for an ID. I would rather it not go to the wrong place to begin with. Can you change the address and charge ME the $10 fee? I'll give you my credit card."

Nope...since it was done using the Best Buy UPS account...there's nothing they can do.

So I make ONE FINAL CALL to the Best Buy customer service.

I basically tell them the same paragraph you see above. But...nope...there is nothing they can do. So I said something like, "Look...I'm not trying to be a pain. I have worked in a call center, I know you are doing everything you can do...and I know you're telling me that there's nothing you or any supervisor can do...and I get that. I really do. BUT...there HAS to be SOMEONE there who is in charge of the Best Buy campaign in your call center who has the authority or can call someone at Best Buy Corporate who has the authority to make a five minute phone call to UPS and give them your account number and say "please change the address."

This guy - in his inability to help me - actually helped me more than anyone else that day. (I probably spent a total of 1.5 - 2 hours on the phone trying to get this resolved). He said, "there probably is someone here who can do that, but if there is I have no idea who it is or how to get in touch with them. The only thing I can suggest is perhaps going to our website and seeing if the number for our corporate office is on our web page."


I pulled up the web page and sure enough on the right hand side near the bottom was their corporate address and phone number. It was too late in the day at this point to I called the next day and FINALLY got in touch with someone who could make the five minute phone call to UPS to change the address.

So...I think I have thinner hair...and a flatter forehead...a bruised brain...and a bad taste in my mouth for Best Buy...but mission accomplished.

Just wait til you get to hear about my other online merchant story!


The Rock Chick said...

Oh, that explains why my IT husband is rapidly losing his hair! My husband is a cop, but is also a computer guru and is now the IT guy for the Police and Fire Departments in the town he works for.

He's his own team, though. No assistants, nothing. They just keep telling him "he can do it" and to keep his phone on 24/7. And they call 24/7. It's almost insane.

Anyway, I went to Best Buy a few years ago to buy a computer they had on sale for the kids. The guy tried to sell me everything under the sun to go along with it, including a three year warranty for like hundreds of dollars.

I said "Dude, I'm buying a low end e-machine so the kids can get on the internet". If it goes askew, my husband will fix it and if he can't fix it, well, then I'll toss it in the garbage. I dont want the extended warranty."

This guy proceeds to ramble on about The Geek Squad and not only computer repairs, but other services they have to offer, like getting digital pics from my camera to my computer. He would even give me a discount on this service if I bought the warranty.

Ummm, thanks, but I can already do that and like I said, this computer is for the kids to get all kinds of spyware/adware and maybe even a virus or two that escapes Norton, so they don't ruin the good computers in the house. I don't want the warranty.

He tells me that he doesn't think he can sell me this computer because I'm not aware of the risks of owning one if I'm not interested in his warranty.

I asked for the manager who told me I had to buy the warranty if I wanted the computer. I left and went to Circuit City an got another one and have sworn off Best Buy along with Wickes Furniture.

Thats another story........Thanks for the link!

Jessica The Rock Chick

Dustin said...

I know how your husband feels! I only recently got an assistant (within the past 1.5 years) and even MORE recently stopped answer my phone EVERY SINGLE TIME it rang!

If someone told me that I couldn't buy a computer without buying an extended warranty, I think I'd probably find someone to report them to...that can't be legal. You should write to their corporate office and complain...maybe they'll send you a coupon for 50% off an extended warranty.

What CRAP! lol

Crystal said...

I'm not sure which story is more ridiculous!