November 21, 2008

Waiting for Dell... and waiting... and waiting

Do I stay or do I go? A new laptop should arrive from Dell today, seven weeks after I ordered it, and nearly five weeks after the supposed original delivery date. So I'm hanging around the office, hoping... though I do have errands to run...

Dell's customer service appears to have collapsed. If you Google "Dell" in the news, the company is in trouble, and from my recent experience, rightly so.

Over the past ten years I've ordered several computers from Dell, and have never experienced the delays and breakdown in communication that have dogged this last order.

I specifically wanted the new laptop ahead of a two-week vacation, and when the order form informed me that the estimated delivery date was Oct. 13, and I was departing on the 16th, I went ahead, assuming I had a cushion of a couple of days for any delay. Right.

Despite Dell's avowed policy of updating customers regarding any delays, I did not receive any notification, and left on my vacation without a new machine.

When I returned, over two weeks past the original estimated delivery date, there was still no computer. So I fired off an email to customer service and a day later received a reply apologizing for the delay, proposing a new estimated delivery date of Nov. 21 (today), but no mention about why they didn't proactively inform me about what was (not) happening.

So I sit here, and I check my order page online, and it still has a projected delivery date of Oct. 13, not Nov. 21... And the progress bar indicates that the notebook is still "In Production." Yet what do I believe, the apparently never-updated order status page, or the email from the customer service rep?

Argh!

How can you run a business like this? How can a company tumble so far?

Posted by Paul at November 21, 2008 10:34 AM