Why Global Sites Matter

In some comments and e-mail responses to Direct2Dell posts, you have asked specifically if Dell has plans to move call center functions from India and other global locations back into the United States. The short answer is no. Several of you have also claimed that offshoring is simply a way to increase profits at the expense of customer experience. This is not the case, but before you tune out, I urge you to stay with me. Cost is only one aspect of expanding our customer contact center network and it’s becoming less of a factor over time. Intellectual capital and size of the talent pool are becoming increasingly important in making call center placement decisions. The reality is that some of our most knowledgeable technicians come from India and other global locations. The same goes for engineering talent—Dell operates five Global Design Centers in Austin, China, India, Taiwan and Singapore.

Dell also operates a 27-site network of call centers across the Americas, Europe and Asia including 12 centers in 6 countries that support our U.S. customer base. We have U.S. call centers in 5 states and we continue to add more support agents in many of them. All of us at Dell recognize that there is room for improvement in the way we support our customers and we are working to make it happen. In responses to my previous post, some of you mentioned that language skills and accents are a source of frustration. However, we know the biggest impact we can have on overall customer satisfaction is to make it easier for you to reach a technician who can quickly solve your problem. When the accent gets in the way of resolution, this is indeed an issue. We have recently implemented more stringent English language criteria. But there is so much more that is involved in resolving problems than just the accentsimplifying the phone menu system, decreasing hold times, reducing call transfers, and training agents to make them more knowledgeable on a wider range of topics. To address these concerns, we’re working to simplify processes and investing in more training for all agents around the world. In fact, our tech support agents receive 3 months of training before they ever step into the queue to support you. They also receive three weeks of annual refresher training to keep them proficient on the increasingly complex issues faced by our customers.

Many of these things seem pretty simple and, in hindsight, seem obvious. Because we know that no customer wants to waste time on the phone, we spent more time focusing on efficiency instead of effectiveness. We measured and rewarded agents based on call length vs. total issue resolution. Over the past couple of months we moved away from this and are now focused on “first contact” resolution as the right end game. We would rather see a 30-minute phone call that we know fixes the issue vs. a 20-minute phone call that will undoubtedly lead to a repeat call. We are investing heavily in tools like DellConnect that enable a higher resolution of difficult “soft calls” centered around Windows, drivers etc. Calls with DellConnect typically take longer than without but the resolution rates overall are higher. This focus is on effectiveness vs. efficiency. Obviously there is a balance to be had as there is a law of diminishing returns on how long customers want to be on the phone. We need to make sure that we work towards this balance point in order to provide the fastest, most accurate resolution possible.

As a group, employees who work in customer contact support functions represent more than 40 percent of Dell’s overall global employee base of almost 70,000 people. We’re proud of the contributions that these employees make on behalf of our customers. That said, we’re at the early stages of a prolonged effort. Our goal is to provide the best support experience in the industry—in all of our call centers around the world. I recognize this is a sensitive topic and that regardless of what I say that some people will simply throw their hands up and say, “to heck with Dell.” Action speaks louder than words and we are working to make it happen.

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39 thoughts on “Why Global Sites Matter

  1. Didn’t read the whole article.  The fact that Dell does not plan to move call centers out of India because "some of our most knowledgeable technicians come from India" is laughable at best.

    If they’re the "most knowledgeable technicians" why are so many people stuck with unresolved problems?  Why is BBB such a concern for Dell?  BBB is important and the complaint rate is slowly decreasing, but if these "most knowledgeable technicians" were so great, why are users still unhappy?

    Why do users need to post their problems here if "most knowledgeable technicians" in India should be helping them?

    Action speaks louder than words is for sure, but all we’re hearing from Dell’s customer service plan is more of the same.

  2. "The reality is that some of our most knowledgeable technicians come from India and other global locations."

    Does this mean that eventually all your call centers might be located overseas?

  3. If you’re going to continue to employ call centers in other countries, you need to at least allow callers a choice of having their call routed to a call center in their native country.  I’d rather sit on hold longer to talk to someone in the US than get right through to someone in India.

    As previously stated by several people in comments, you also need to provide a way for network administrators to identify themselves as such, and skip the bottom tier troubleshooting.  We know what the problem is, we don’t want to spend half an hour convincing you, we just want replacement parts.  Make it easier on us somehow.

  4. I want to revoke my last comment. I showed this to someone else who reads these posts often. Apparently what was ment was the people in india get three months of training. I thought you had ment all phone techs.

  5. This was Dell’s choice to offshore call centers, however customers also want low prices. Customers fail to recoginize this trade off, of either paying more for a computer or accessory or putting up with lower quality customer service.

    I think many aspects of a global ecomony are great opportunities for other developing countries. However bigger companies usually offer so much to smaller countries that countries allow huge companies to take advantage of themselves. This is what worries me, the responsibility of larger companies, i.e. Dell and the responsibility they are given.

    Also, this post seemed to bypass the important difficulities. I agree training is important and I am glad they provide three months training, however my frustration is with accent and call sound quality. Its much wores if you can’t  understand what someone is saying, versus if they don’t have they knowledge.

  6. Keep sending things overseas.  You’re just training them on how it is done.  Your competition in the future will come from these countries that you trained.

  7. I think Dell is missing a very obvious resource in the tech world. I own a computer repair shop, and have had an incredible amount of difficulty dealing with off-shore Dell technicians. I think Dell would be better served if they were a little more open with their tech support, such as giving repairs shops such as mine access to special tech support call centers that are trained to deal with technicians instead of the general public and also second-level and higher tech support. I can almost hear the pages ratteling everytime they go through their prepared script: "Please – turn – your – computer – off – and – back – on. This – will – solve – most – of -your -common -errors." Sounds like Robbie the Robot. Not something I really want to hear when the Hard Drive is going KaChunk, KaChunk, KaChunk, KaChunk.

  8. The talent pool is larger in India? Even if this were the case, customers living in the US would much rather speak to someone who either lives in the US as well, or speaks English very well. When I’ve called Dell and been routed to an overseas call-center employee, they read from a script, and we never relate to each other.

    This is bad for business, and no matter how you guys sugarcoat this, the consumer will never like the idea of large corporations farming out their customer support to India. When a call is answered by someone in India, it’s like Dell telling me "We don’t care enough about you to spend the time and money that we should by finding qualified, knowledgeable techs here in the US".

    Oh and by the way, it’s not really a blog if all your postings have to be approved by Marketing and Legal departments. Go back to what you guys do best: Making subpar equipment, selling it en masse through ingenious marketing, and as soon as your customer gives you the cash, abandon them.

  9. My experience with the Indian call centers have been that they have no sense of accountability with the customer.  I’ve been hung up on, transfered back into the queue I was already in, lied to (they told me they set up a dispatch, but didn’t even log that they took my call), and the only name I have to file a complaint with is "Bob" off in Mumbo Jumbo Land.

    If you keep the Indian call center, add a month of empathy training.  When I called back in, I got the canned responses of, "We’re sorry that you experienced such inconvenience.  At Dell, we strive for excellent customer satisfaction, blah blah blah," as if that is going to somehow make me keep my chin up and feel happy.  Back when you had American tech support, you could ask for a manager, and they would take care of business.  Now, even if you get a manager, they’re no better than "Bob".

    I want them to apologize and sound like they mean it.  I want them to go above and beyond the call of duty to make me happy.  I want to be treated like my business means something to them and that they have a vested interest to keep me happy.

    Go ahead and call into your Indian tech support.  You walk away with the attitude that a person took your call that doesn’t give a rip about you, is annoyed to have to talk to you, and as long as they get their $800 per month, they’re fine.  The faceless Americans will just keep calling, satisfied or not.

  10. <<think Dell would be better served if they were a little more open with their tech support, such as giving repairs shops such as mine access to special tech support call centers that are trained to deal with technicians instead of the general public and also second-level and higher tech support.

    They do if you buy more than X number of dell computers per year. If you buy one or two your not any better than the average home user.

  11. I’m a consultant who represents several Dell customers.  Basically, if those customers want something they tell me to go get it for them.  This works out because said customers don’t know what they need computer-wise.

    After reading this post, I feel I must inform Dell that my experiences dealing with their off-shored offices has been painful at best.  Customer Care offices that are in India and other countries are horrible.  Here are some of the issues:

    1.  Hard to understand accents.  

    2.  Uncaring attitudes (and it is called Customer Care, right?)

    3.  Lack of knowledge regarding the product.

    4.  Poor customer service.

    I fail to see why it should take me 1.5 hours to order a DVD-Burner for a computer.  I fail to see why I should spend so much time asking someone to repeat themselves because I can’t understand them.  I also fail to understand how someone who has little understanding of the product is supposed to assist me.

    Off-shoring customer service is the best way to tell one’s customers that you don’t want to deal with them.

    Fairplay

  12. The training with Indian techs doesn’t even matter without good communication skills. Who cares how good they are with a computer when I cannot communicate the incident to him or her.

    I also agree with a comment above. I should have the option to wait perhaps a longer wait time for stateside support. Esepically for those calls which are more advanced and require command lines and codes to be communicated between the agent and customer.

    Also, you agents need a personality. I feel like I’m talking to a submissive robot who has to apolgize when it talks. You don’t need to apolgize for putting me on hold before you even do it. I just want help.

  13. Well, it seems obvious Dell does not agree that non-North American techs and customer service agents are any less able to support their customers than North American. They seem to think the language barrier is a small inconvience that can be over come with time. Ignore for a moment how long these overseas facilities have been operating. They also seem to think the overseas support is just as adaptive and responsive as North American support.

    It seems the posters on this blog as well as many many others disagree.

    So what do you do? I suggest the path of Vincent Ferrari. Record your call. Post your call on the internet. It seemed to get AOL’s attention

  14. I’d be curious to learn more about how Dell’s US based customer care and technical support employees feel about the increase shifting call center traffic to India.

    I personally have a friend who quit because he was frustrated with the # of complaints he had to deal with due to negative experiences with the India based call centers. Has anyone heard any similar or different feedback on morale?

  15. Jason Ganz said, "My case, it is a Dell M90 that cost over $4,000.  Although i will not go into the details of it, suffice to say, that for a small business in its infancy, $4,000+ is an unbelievable amount of money to spend on such a thing.  Furthermore, $300 of this went to upgrading the warranty.  If a dell XPS customer can get american service, why can’t someone with a BUSINESS computer, a computer that will not be used for mindless drivel, get the same American service?"

    I have a Precision workstation and you go to a queue that is not based in India. I had a good experience recently. The full story can be found here: http://bashwagon.blogspot.com/2006/07/lucky-me.html

  16. Quoted from Rod

    "As previously stated by several people in comments, you also need to provide a way for network administrators to identify themselves as such, and skip the bottom tier troubleshooting.  We know what the problem is, we don’t want to spend half an hour convincing you, we just want replacement parts.  Make it easier on us somehow."

    If you did some research before cutting down Dell, you would find out that Dell has a service called DCSE, and if you get certified, you have a number to call and just order parts, or even order them over the web.

    I am sick of people tearing down companies including Dell because they are too "slow" to find out something via research.  Even 12 year old children research a product on the web before they run into walmart to buy it, why can’t "Network Admins" do the same.  Rod is the reason why "Network Admins" are made fun of in call centres…all certs, no brains.

  17. If you are concerned about the long wait times and having to explain the troubleshooting steps you have already done you can always go to: http://dcse.dell.com/ Do the training and become certified on Dell products. Once you are certified you will be able to call a specific # and just request the parts. There is a fee for the training though.

  18. Personally, i’d rather have quality and american service at a higher price than have lower prices and indian service.  The problem lies in part with consumers wanting the lowest price above anything.  The reason dell doesn’t care about customer service is because we’re not willing to pay the right price for our own citizen to get the CS jobs.

    Pay a bit more now, save an american’s job!

  19. As a Dell consumer, i understand the idea of "bang for the buck", as well as consumer and business operations.  What bothers me to no end however, is the treatment of small business customers in Dell’s CS, especially those who spend LARGE amounts of money on a very high-end system, and then get the premium warranty to prevent their calls from being outsourced.

    My case, it is a Dell M90 that cost over $4,000.  Although i will not go into the details of it, suffice to say, that for a small business in its infancy, $4,000+ is an unbelievable amount of money to spend on such a thing.  Furthermore, $300 of this went to upgrading the warranty.  If a dell XPS customer can get american service, why can’t someone with a BUSINESS computer, a computer that will not be used for mindless drivel, get the same American service?  (Especially with a business that will help the AMERICAN economy such as an ebay business?)

    I can understand the idea of outsourcing consumer calls, those who are after the lowest prices available, and will go to near any length to get that.  However, businesses need quality, not only in the initial product, but also in the afterservice, and having people with thick accents who (regardless of training) sound like they could not give two bits about what’s going on, is NOT the way to treat a customer.  Customers are the ultimate measure of advertising, and we are not fond of people who sound like robots reciting what seems to be pre-programmed.

    I have an idea for dell:  do a survey of owners of their products and see if they’d rather spend a small extra fee (ie: 10 – 15%) to be guaranteed american customer service reps.  Integrate that fee into the price of the computer.  It may seem crazy, but i’d be willing to bet a good amount of people wouldn’t mind seeing a small increase in price pre-inserted into their total fee if they were assured beforehand their call would not be travelling to India.

    PS, it’s one thing to send a call to india for a $500 consumer laptop, it’s another to send out a customer who has spent over $4,000 on a business laptop.  BIG DIFFERENCE in what the bottom line would be for it.

  20. You can make any attempt you wish to justify third world support. In the end, if you keep it up, you will be a third world computer company.

  21. Customer satisfaction should be the non plus ultra for every company. So many bad experiences to read with technical support overseas. Nothing positive to read – ask why? Dell should think about that.

  22. Rod said "If you’re going to continue to employ call centers in other countries, you need to at least allow callers a choice of having their call routed to a call center in their native country.  I’d rather sit on hold longer to talk to someone in the US than get right through to someone in India."

    Everyone I know feels the same way. Give us someone who understands us! The average consumer may not be as lingo savy as your technicians. Add another language barrier on top of it and you might as well just say. "We’re doing everything possible to make sure this is one of the most frustrating situations of your lifetime."  Personally, I’d rather shove bamboo shoots under my fingernails than call tech support in India.

  23. With all the racist and ignorant posts about call centers over seas.. I think Dell should move all its Indian employs to the US.

  24. …the only North American Tech that I’ve ever spoken to that knew less than Dell’s ‘indian’ techs worked for SBC DSL — and at least she knew she didn’t know

  25. My earliest experience with off-shore support was when my client had a failing hard drive in an Inspiron 8000. The call took forever and I had a horrible time trying to understand the tech rep because a) I have a hearing disability that requires hearing aids, b) the accent and c) an echoing long distance sat connection. The tech rep actually called me back, at my request, in the hopes of securing a better connection.

    Then there was the scripted diagnosis procedure. I was actually required to find a screw driver, remove the HD from the machine, and then turn it on so that the I could tell the tech rep that the machine was not making the same Ka Chunk Ka Chunck noise. I wondered, how many of my clients would be willing or able to disassemble their laptops while speaking on the phone to someone in India?

    Then there was the kicker: because it was Friday afternoon, I was told that I successfully completed the diagnostic procedure, but that I would have to phone back to my local CSR on Monday morning and cue up all over again to order the replacement HD. Not exactly a seemless transition. Note that I was not planning on being onsite at the client’s come Monday morning.

    I note that this all took place several years ago, when Dell had first begun the switch to India. Recent experiences seem much improved. Last week I was handed off to a Canadian CSR in realtime, who was able to arrange an alternative to the refurbished HD that had been sent to me to replace the HD in a 7 week old Inspiron. Not an ideal situation, but it went relatively smoothly, all things considered.

  26. After several experiences with Dell Customer Care based in India, I find every experience to be a stressful and time consuming experience. Generally it involves navigating your way through a maze of prompts, then having to explain yourself to someone with an accent who may or may not understand fully what you’re saying, which means you have to repeat yourself. Then you get transferred again back into the telephone maze. Then, when you get through to someone again, the line quality is so poor that even if you can understand their accent, you can’t hear what they’re saying.

    Outsourcing customer service to India, or any other country where English is not the technicians first language shouts out one thing – WE DON’T CARE ABOUT CUSTOMER SERVICE.

    Surely it would be quicker and more cost effective to use native technicians that can solve issues quickly and easily – at least then there is the chance that the customer may come back for a repeat purchase rather than going somewhere else after experiencing such abysmal from offshort "Customer Service" teams.

  27. I worked for a company whose first version of software was terrible. Over time we fixed the problems, and could deliverable an excellent product.  However, the name of the product was trash in the perception of our clients, and it wouldn’t sell.  The company took the same product, renamed it, and sold it to happy customers.

    Dell might make its Indian call centers models of customer care, and clients would still hate calling Dell India.  It’s not logical or fair.

    Dell needs to realize that from a perception point of view it must order all call center operations out of India.

    Consumer anger is too strong and deep for Indian call centers to benefit Dell, regardless of all the money thrown at their improvement.  My advice is to cut your (considerable) losses and shut down those centers. Any other approach will just waste money on improving the Betamax.

  28. I’m getting into this conversation a little late, but after posting a similar compaint to another Dell blogger, I was directed to this post of “Why Global Sites Matter,” I too cringed at their comment regarding India’s better talent resources. I cringed at the strong air of discontent from customers. I cringed that Dell has so much as said to all of us, “get used to it. We’re not going to change.”  As a 20-year veteran PR & Marketing professional, I would have never allowed this employee to post that “India talent” comment to customers. Dell – please take heed: you have a MAJOR  PR problem on your hands. Your customers purchase your computers. We understand that there will be issues, but we expect effective, efficient customer service. When you hear in stereophonic sound from us that we’re not getting what we’re paying for, then why wouldn’t you listen?  Here’s a bold idea: Why not be different. Why not step out from the pack of all the other companies who ship customer support and customer service overseas. Why not do as has been suggested, and bring it all back the United States and Canada?  Cut the losses, announce that you’re RE-INVESTING IN AMERICA – our talent, our jobs, our people. The goodwill and positive publicity that would generate would bring new customers, get you tons of press coverage, and envigorate existing customers who are obviously very disgruntled with you. It would set a new, positive tone for other companies. You could lead the way. Think about it. Don’t keep digging this hole in India. Be true to your own country and your own people.  If this is seen as racist to India – so be it.  Who are you really serving anyway? 

  29. I’m a Johnny-come-lately, but let me toss in some cans of worms. I’ve worked for the call center industry in the US.

    All the problems people report from getting from India call centers (dropped calls, agents hanging up on customers, reading from scripts, incoherent accents, out and out fabrications to get people off the phone), those all happened just as often as they did before the mass migration of call centers overseas.

    Ya know what? Most of the call center workers in the US are potato heads. You ever wonder where all the weirdos you see on the street find jobs? Yup, call centers. Call centers are the bottom-feeders of the computer industry in the US. They pay poor wages (in one place I worked, they paid less than pizza delivery), they take anyone who can muddle around a computer and often get only a few weeks training. Then they are put under large amounts of pressure to perform fast. Inept agents who never miss a day are retained over competent agents who get sick, even if they have good reasons (chronic medical problems), because it’s the warm body that counts – that’s what they get paid for.

    Most people with skills get jobs elsewhere quickly, if for no other reason than to stop being treated like they are cattle. If you work in tech support for a long time, you get sneered at. Heck, I talked to one temp agency that considered me unemployable because I’d worked tech support.

    Now let’s look at the call centers in India. Now do you think that Indian agents are somehow less intelligent, that they won’t grasp issues as well? The fact is, they usually have the same amount of technical ability that Americans do. And here’s another interesting fact: In some call centers overseas, there’s a high ratio of college-educated agents. Much higher than you see in call centers in the US. Why? Call center work overseas is often considered respectable. You work for
    a call center? Wow, you are doing well for yourself there.

    As much as you want to take pride in your country, the fact is that companies can go overseas to get the same level of ineptitude as they get right here in the US of A for a much lower cost. And sometimes they can get better, because they can target a higher class of employee in India than they can here because a barely living wage here means you live like a king in India.

    You want good ol’ American know-how? Pony up the cash, monkeyboy. That’s right, you have to pay for it. And be prepared to pay real money, money that fits a skilled American’s skill set and their standard of living. But until you stop patting yourself on the back for finding that super deal and then kvetching about horrible support and bad PR, you are just a part of the problem.

  30. Hi All,

    I totally agree with what Templeton Davis has to say. Are we ready to pay so much more just to have call centeres back here in USA?  Makes no economic sense.I think it is nothing more than a dislike we have for the small developing countries like India, Phillipines, that makes us dislike the call centres being moved there. In that way we should stop importing more than 90 % of our clothes, crockery, utensils ,phones, petfood,linen,towels, shower curtains, etc, etc from China. Shouldnt we just manufacture them here, and give jobs to people?? And those will be better paying jobs than call center jobs, as most of them require special training or skills.

    Let us not forget that it is a different world now. Things are much more global and companies can now choose to put up call centres, manufacturing units, tech support  etc..according to what makes economic sense . And lets not forget it benefits us too. If the company spends less on the production etc… we get it cheaper!!

  31. Well hate can kill all logic …without logic there is no discussion…without discussion …only fools are left to shout …If we leave emotion out of this whole conversation and talk with our heads I think we would be able to make some progress..

    I am not sure what is the problem that we are discussing here ?

    1) Is the problem that the call centers are in India ? or

    2) Is the problem that you don’t get the resolution when you call any call center in India

    3) Or it doen’t matter ..we don;t have any other burning issue and we need to create one to talk 

    Whatever it is …all the logical people above didn’t have any data to support what they were strongly propogating..

    Were they getting better resolution when these call centers were based in US ? Did they get any better ownership ?

    Well you can only make assumption..none of the people above have any data but their own stories to tell

    But one thing ..does it make economic sense to Dell ..Yes ?…Are we in a Global economy ..Yes ?..Is Dell selling in India …Yes ?…Does Dell currently manufacture in India …No..well we could continue to debate ..the only reasoning I see behind opposing Global Call center is the lack of reasoning..

     Do I need to say more !!!

     

     

     

  32. I have purchased, or been responsible for the purchase of, over 100 Dell PCs and laptops. But no more. I have suffered through yet another round of time-consuming, frustrating, unintelligible interaction with the tech support staff in Asia, and I’m mad as hell and won’t take it anymore.

    I’d gladly pay $100-$200 extra per computer to have support that is both knowledgeable and native-English speaking. Every single person I know who has a computer complains about the horrible experiences we share in dealing with the techies in India and elsewhere.

    My most recent disaster started with a hard drive crash. I could hear the “needle” scratching the “record”, but still did 2 hours of diagnostics and testing on my own. Then I spent 2 hours more on the phone with an unintelligible tech rep, during which she made me do all the same things I’d already done on my own. She still wasn’t convinced that it was a hard drive crash. Finally, I persuaded her to consult with someone else, and I eventually was sent a replacement drive.

    The process for getting the old drive sent back to Dell for credit has required 2 more lengthy, frustrating calls to India, and the package is still sitting outside my front door, waiting for UPS to arrive.

    Can you imagine how successful and profitable a computer company would be if it offered really useful, helpful, efficient and timely support? 

  33. Robert, my wife and I are almost in the same boat as you. In early June 2007, we ordered a Inspiron 1505 laptop so my wife could give her niece her current Dell laptop to use at college. The laptop arrived within 10 days of order and would not work detecting a wireless network. After 6 hours on the phone with Dell support, including online chat with our working laptop, and 4 hours with our cable company, Dell support had us open up the computer case (doesn’t this void the warranty?) to reseat the wireless card. This did not work. So they had us go to a wi-fi hotspot to see if the laptop would detect it. After an hour at the restaurant, it did not work. Then we called Dell back and they wanted us to open up the case again in the restaurant. I about lost it. You do not open up a computer in a restaurant. So we finally got Dell to send a replacement wireless card. Several days later, it arrived. And it did not work either. After much haggling, Dell finally relented and said they would send a replacement computer.

    It gets better. Meantime, we’re going out of town when this computer is suppose to arrive so we had to call Dell and see if we could get the computer delivered to where we will be – they said that they could. Well, it never arrived. So the day we left to come back home, we had to call Dell and tell them to ship the computer back to the original address. They said that would not be a problem. Then Dell called and said that it was shipped to where we were at out of town and that it was refused. I called where we were at (my mother’s by the way) and the computer never arrived there so Dell lied.

    Finally, we had enough. My wife got ahold of Dell and told them to cancel this order and that we would pay off the account and close it and that I was in the process of e-mailing my corporate people who handle a multi-million dollar account with Dell and have them reconsider the account. I sent a well documented e-mail to my corporate people and cc’d two Dell personnel who handle my company’s corporate account. Well, I guess I got the ball rolling somehow because now Dell is so nice and willing to help and are giving us the next model computer with a $300 discount and cancel the replacement 1505 computer.

    But that’s not all. Guess what happened? The day after we got my wife’s upgraded order (which works fine with no problems), her original replacement arrived, the 1505. Now we are having problems with Dell taking this computer back. They said that UPS was aware of the shipment and after giving us a routing number, said that UPS would be over to pick it up. Well, that was 2 days ago and we are still waiting.

    By law, since this computer was not ordered by us (remember, this order was cancelled), we could keep it without paying for it. And I found out that the replacement 1505 was shipped from Austin, Tx just a few days ago and was never in transit to where we were previously. So I caught Dell in another lie. But since we are honest, we are trying to have Dell take this computer back. And it seems like they do not want this computer back.

    I have had nothing but problems with the Dell call center. My wife was ready to crawl through the phone at some of the people with whom she was dealing with. The language accent is definitely a problem but not the only problem. I have lived overseas in two different countries and I had to learn the local language. But when your customer is primarily English speaking, the customer would like to speak with someone without the muddled accent or dipthong. No, I do not speak the Queen’s english myself but I do not have a problem in conveying my spoken words. Do I have to learn Hindi in order to be understood? God, I hope not. And just because you speak english doesn’t mean that you understand it.

    Just being lied to by the call center is enough for us to pay this account off for good and then close out the account. I still want my company to get another computer vendor. Anyone but Dell.  

  34. I just tried to order a $4,500 computer from dell and I had questions about leasing my computer through my business.. Four frustrating calls later in which we could not understand each other I opted to look elsewhere. I looked to alienware and read that they had been bought out by dell and looked no further. My next stop is Apple power mac..    Anyone who reads this post I want it known that I always praised dell to anyone who asked my advise.. Now I say look elsewhere and good luck :O)

  35. Dell consumer support is horrible. I am a 20 year Dell customer and will NEVER BUY A DELL PRODUCT AGAIN. I’ve been all over the globe with these incompetent puppets. I finally had my issue “elevated” only to now be stuck with someone in Texas who has been totally unresponsive to my needs. I ordered a laptop in early July and have had 2 replacements sent and they still cant get it right nor give me a firm confirmation of when my 3rrd replacement will arrive. Not the same ole Dell I was used to dealing with.

  36. Responding to Downs Deering’s blog, this is what I feel. Has DELL mapped what the customer wants when they call DELL to the criteria of an agent. From what I feel, the company has internal metrics that measure the agents’ availability and irrelavant metrics.
    eg: if an agent supports corporate customers and gets an issue of HD making noise, he would have to replace all the Hard drives. His dispatch rate would go for a toss. Look at the customer now. He is happy because DELL identified his issue and fixed or did give a replacement. But look at the agent. He is given coaching on communication skills. How does that help ?
    Solution:
    Have 3 layers.
    1) Identify the customers needs.
    2)translate that to site metrics, not agent metrics.
    3) drive the site metrics, not customer metrics. When you drive customer metrics, you have to compromise.

    here are the details:
     let us take monthly customer satisfaction metrics. compare it against other sites. look at the site having lower customer satisfaction rates and then look at the root cause. are they due to specific issues or a very generic issues like language barrier ? then work on them.

    How is it dirrerent?
    You are not driving customer metrics, but you are driving organization metric. This has to be a paradigm shift.

  37. The claim that Indian CSR is talented or technically capable is ignorant at best.  After dealing with Dell CSR for three different issues in the last 4 months, and wasted my time, energy, and sanity on talks with Indian CSRs, I learned my lesson: if it’s an Indian CSR, just hang up.

    In all three cases, the Indian CSRs I talked to didn’t know anything about computer hardware (in one case I had to explain what a CD-ROM is, and how it is different from a NIC, oh what a NIC is as well).  In all three cases, I got them resolved by talking to U.S.-based CSRs.

    Now, I have been buying Dell for home and work and friend for the last few years almost model by model from laptop to server / storage array.  I have just begun to deal with Dell CSR in the last 4 months.  I will no longer buy Dell personally or recommend Dell personally.  At work, I will do my best to have my company buy HP from now on.  My CSR experience between HP and Dell is night and day.  I’d rather pay a bit more knowing that if things fail, I don’t have to beg or shout or cry for repairs / replacements.

    I strongly suggest this director call Dell CSR on a couple of real problems.  Only then would he/she realize what a moron he/she was.
     

  38. I am planning on purchasing a Dell computer soon. I also know what it is like to have a person from India to speak to about problems that may be causing problems. First Dell trys to compete with other companys and by doing this they save money but miss out on a lot of people that they could have as customers. I am married to a person that has a Master in Computer tech from India. At first we could not understand each other well but in time it worked out well. She works for Dell and believe me the company is trying to do well. What they fail to do is train the people from India how to relate to US. We have so many things that we take for granted and they do not understand the common ways we do things. In time if they would bring the people here to US and train them and start a call center here they could pay them the same and  train US people to do the job just as well as them.  They are more qualified but fail to relate to US. We are already paying large amonts for things and customer service is more important then having a person not satisfied. Dell fails to see this.  I hope that in tme they see that costomer service is just as important. They look at selling in other countries more then the home base that made them as big as they are. We in the US want satisfaction just as much and more then others. This is the way we live not getting 2nd hand talk that we can not understand. Dell wake up and train people here to have people that can relate to more then one part of the world. There are many people that can talk many languages and can relate to many countries and explain what is needed. Hire them it will save money in the long run. It is sad to see many costomers that have your product which is one of the best there is to tell you they will not use your product any more. One costomer can lose is so uncalled for when you  can look at a few coments of others that care about your product. .  

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