Customer service is dead?

I have been in customer service for years.  For many of those years, I actually cared about the customer and cared about helping them solve their problems.  I have also been completely burned out at times and beyond helping the customer to keep my job, I did not go much beyond that.  I didn’t pester anyone to do their job so the customer would be helped; I didn’t take that extra step to make sure the customer understood how to fix the problem next time or any other of the other dozen things I could have done to make their experience with our company just a little bit less frustrating.  I get that customer service is difficult and can take the stuffing out of you.  But does anyone actually care about the customer ever?

Yesterday, I ran into two instances in which I felt like I was definitely at the receiving end of apathetic customer care although it was a mixed bag.  

The cabinet guys showed up exactly on time.  My clock said 2:01 as they knocked on the door.   Perfect customer service.  But then the owner wasn’t there.  He told me he was doing to drop by with the guys to re-look at what needed to be done.   I guess he decided not to?  Then I got the bill for the drawers.  It wasn’t 300$ but 510$.  I got charged 300$ for the drawers, 150$ to square up the cabinets for the drawers to be installed and 60$ for the drawer pulls.  Not once did the company inform me that squaring the cabinets would be an extra charge and did I want to pay it let alone actually tell me what the charge was.  On top of that, I was led to believe that the 300$ was for everything related to putting in the drawers so why did I pay an extra 60$ for the drawer pulls?  I paid the bill but I wasn’t pleased.  I will say that the drawers look awesome and they should have for the amount of money I paid for them!  And then the guys brought in the third cabinet – the pantry.  It was very heavy and difficult to lift.  It needed to be lifted up on the new part of the flooring.  The guys were actually concerned about damaging the edge of the flooring so they requested that I put in a cast off piece to protect it before trying to lift the cabinet unto the floor.  Thanks guys… I appreciate you thinking about the details.   Then I got a phone call about what was supposed to be done the cabinet.  After everything was said and done you are calling me about what was supposed to be done?  Didn’t we have this conversation before?  And if you were in doubt – WHY DIDN’T YOU SHOW UP LIKE YOU SAID YOU WERE GOING TO?  Like I said… my experience was a mixed bag.  And I will be going by their shop today to make sure that it is going to be done right.  Thanks for ensuring that I am wasting my previous renovation time this weekend checking up on you.

And on to my next experience.  Despite considerable care being taken to ensure that the stove would not drag any adhesive onto the new floor something happened and we did get adhesive on the new floor.  And then I damaged the finish trying to get if off.  ARGH!!!!  So I decided to walk down to the carpet store and ask about what I can do.  While I was there, I decided to look into my options for the dining room/living room opening.  That is where I found out that I was told the wrong thing for the T moulding.  I specifically dropped by and asked what spacing I needed to leave open for the T moulding.  I was told 1/2″.  Last night, I saw the T-moulding and it is not even close to 1/2″.  We measured and it was 7/8″.   WTF?  In fact, I was told that I had to put adhesive on the T-moulding to attach it to the floor.  I was like really?  Are you sure?  Oh yes… I am sure.   Also not true.  You get an aluminum track that you attach to the underlayment and you simply snap the T moulding into that track.  I have not gotten far enough into doing the threshold that I can’t correct for this error in information thank goodness.    And then I find out that in front of a door threshold where you can’t put the flooring under the threshold (which I can’t as mine is marble), you use an endcap to protect the edge of the flooring at the door.  I have to admit that I simply didn’t think about it and would have installed the flooring within the quarter inch.  I haven’t done my hallway yet so this isn’t an issue thank goodness but I am completely not happy that I wasn’t told anything when the guy came over to discuss the installation.  And what was I told when I complained that I wasn’t given the complete information when I inquired about what I would need?  Since I am installing it, I am responsible for making sure I know what I am doing and I have everything I need.  They only make sure its done right if they are installing it.  Gee… thanks for making sure I am a satisfied customer.  We wouldn’t want to make sure I come back and buy more flooring from you, would we?  And so… another mixed bag.  And I have to call them back today to make sure that she buys the track for me since I apparently am the only one responsible for making sure I get what I need.

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