Monday, July 25, 2005

Target: Customer Service

This past week I have had some interesting customer service experiences.

The first was last Sunday. I am moving this coming weekend within New York City and decided I needed a new dresser to hold my clothes. So I stopped by Target to look at what they had in terms of selection. I found a dresser I really wanted and noted Target only had one on the shelf. I slowly pulled the box off the bottom shelf only to find the back of the box torn open. I looked at the tear to see if there was any damage to the contents inside. There was damage. There was bits of wood chunks ready to fall out of the box at the slightest movement.

I inquired with the closest associate if there was another one in storage. He said he would check it out. He got another associate to scan it and look upstairs for it. Presumably they had to look upstairs because they weren't sure if that particular model was there or another. Query by me after the fact: "Why would two different models have the same UPC code?" Doesn't that make inventorying a little harder?

Ten minutes passed and the associate came back to say he wasn't sure and that this wasn't his department. He pressed the assistance button and someone else came over. The new person looked upstairs, for ten minutes, and told me there was another one up there but it was damaged as well. I pointed this out to this last associate. He looked at the box and merely pushed it back on the shelf.

I also told him that to wait almost twenty minutes to half an hour to see if there was another dresser model upstairs was bad customer service. A simple reply of this is not my department, but I will happy get someone who knows may have helped.

Instead Target lost this sale.

A footnote on this the above story before I start my second one: I went back today (Friday) to see if the model of dresser I wanted had come in yet, nope it hadn't, the same old damaged model was still on the shelf.  HELLO TARGET! Remove the damaged merchandise so you can get some better stuff in there! The new stuff will sell better than the damaged piece of crap that is there right now!

Finally this week on Tuesday I went to Burger King (on Fulton Street Mall near Adams Street if your wondering). At this location every Tuesday after 4 P.M. they sell Whoppers for 99 cents. So my roommate ordered a Whopper Combo meal (with fries and a Coke). The order came to $5.10 I thought that was weird and said to the cashier that wasn't right since Whoppers were 99 cents on Tuesdays. Tanya, a manager of all people, said "that is not what you ordered."

 "I said, is what she wants. One Whopper, Medium fries and a Coke. The total then came to $4.10. I then ordered the same way.

Interestingly a week before we had the same meal and the order taker put the order in with the 99 cent Whopper. But apparently management at this particular location of Burger King wants to rip people off. I would have thought the management would want people to come back and would have included the 99 cent Whopper in the combo meal deal without even asking.

Just two examples where I have found that companies really don't care about good customer service and providing decent level product. Its frustrating really.

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