[OM] Re: Help! Moron needs computer advice.

Subject: [OM] Re: Help! Moron needs computer advice.
From: Fernando Gonzalez Gentile <fgnzalez@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 27 Mar 2006 16:33:59 -0300
on 27/03/2006 14:39, Winsor Crosby at wincros@xxxxxxxxxxx, wrote:

> I  
> saw an article not too long ago that customer service satisfaction
> for Dell had plunged.

Could it be this one I'm pasting below?


PS: sorry Tom Scales, this paste is pun-intended :)
Circuits From NYTimes.com
Thursday, March 2, 2006

1. From the Desk of David Pogue: Hitting a Dell Nerve
2. This Week in Circuits: When the TV Picture Runs to Triple
3. State of the Art: Apple Laptop Has Looks and Brains
4. Game Theory: Thrilling Action in Flawed Wrappers
5. Online Shopper: Fuller Lives Need Bigger Bags
6. Q & A: Keeping Time With the Internet
7. Software: From Blogger to Published Author, for $30 and Up
8. Cameras: A Camera for Steady Images in an Unstable World
9. Cellphones: Can I Call You Later? My Trainer's on Hold
10. VoIP: A Workaround for Internet Calling's Drawbacks
11. Weather: A Mirror That Will Inform You if the Weather
Looks as Good as You

To view this e-mail with images, go to:

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1. From the Desk of David Pogue: Hitting a Dell Nerve

Last week, I passed along a hilarious satire of the Dell
tech-support experience written by a reader with a sharp
sense of black humor. He described the frustration of dealing
with heavily scripted overseas technicians with obviously
phony American names.

Saying that his essay hit a nerve with readers would be the
understatement of the century. Here's a tiny sampling:

"It is uncanny how EXACTLY right John nails the description
of the Dell tech support process. It's funny, yes, but not
because John makes it funny, but because Dell support is
satire onto itself." -- "This is exactly the experience I
had. Very frustrating, and nobody speaks English as their
native language. Down with outsourcing!"-

"They basically read from a prepared script. It's like
talking to a 5-year-old." -- "The Dell Support story is right
on. Which is why I will NEVER buy another Dell computer." --
"This column would have been humorous if I hadn't gone
through this experience twice last year." -
"Had the SAME experience with Dell 4 times." -- "I don't have
a problem with offshoring; it's that the quality of the techs
is so poor. The training is obviously poor, and Dell has no
excuse for this." -- "Sometimes they wait while you do the
reinstallation--45 minutes or so. And if that doesn't work?
They apply the GIVE UP Solution!" -- "Dealing with DOPEs is
one of the most exasperating experiences in the world. If I
heard the phrase, 'I am sorry for your inconvenience' ONE

"It's eerie how accurately you nailed the Dell support
experience." -- "Thanks for the accurate picture of offshore
tech support. Although you used Dell as an example, I can
attest that most companies in the computer field have similar
services and problems." -- "David and John have only touched
the tip of the iceberg with the horror that is Dell's

And more:

"I too am a survivor of those idiots, and it is too true! I
find their universal answer to all problems, big and small,
is to reformat the hard drive. I know of some newbies who
followed this standard response only to realize all of their
music, pictures and documents were gone forever!" -- "I
actually live in fear of calling Dell's technical support,
and hold back sometimes from doing things with my computer at
home, because of it."

And finally: "I hope that people in authority at Dell have
read Mr. Pogue's humorous 2/23/06 article on the state of
Dell's customer support and will give the actual issues
raised serious consideration."

Oh, they've read it, all right. Three different PR people
from Dell e-mailed me to express how unfunny they found the

"The decision by the New York Times to distribute a one-sided
guest column with disrespectful language toward our Dell team
in other parts of the world without contacting us is bad news
judgment at best," wrote VP Lynn Antipas Tyson.

"We offer support from more than 30 locations, including the
United States, and continue to invest in service delivery--
we've increased our Americas telephone support staff by
approximately 20 percent."

(I asked if she might be willing to reveal the phone number
you can call to reach U.S. call center instead of the one in
India. She replied: "When you buy a system from Dell, you are
provided with a support number that you can call that is
fundamentally customized based on the product and type of
service you have purchased. This ensures that you reach the
person who is best equipped to help you.")

Ms. Tyson's original note continued: "We shipped more than 10
million computer systems last quarter and have seen a 30-
percent decline over the past year in the rate of service
contacts per system sold. This is just one of the many
indications that the experience described in your guest
column is not representative of the millions of customers who
keep coming back to Dell."

Now, I should point out that at least three readers wrote to
say that they'd had good experiences with Dell tech support,
too. And even though they're scripted to the point of
inanity, the overseas reps have twice helped me, too, resolve
problems to my satisfaction (including the time my hard drive
died, and Dell replaced it at no charge).

But even Ms. Tyson ultimately admits that there's room for
"We acknowledge our responsibility to improve service and
support for Dell customers. We're seeing progress and believe
changes we're implementing will establish a new and higher
standard for our customers and for the industry as a whole."

Well, it's good to hear that Dell is seeing progress. Next
up: helping customers see that progress, too.


This week's Pogue's Posts blog:


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