About a week ago I ordered two Christmas presents, one for Jason and one for my mom, at Sears.com. The first item arrived today which was Jason’s present. When I opened the bag (yes…bag), I discovered that they sent me the wrong item. It’s the right brand of item, but the wrong type. So, I go online and checked my order to make sure that the mistake was on my end, which I wasn’t. I then proceeded to try to talk to someone on the live help chat box thing.
I told (well typed actually, but you get the idea) the person that I was sent the wrong item, he/she told me
that the item was already shipped. Well, no shit Sherlock! He/she then asked me what I expected them to do. I asked who to send it back to so I could get the correct item I ordered. He/she responded that since it was shipped I could not get a refund and that I would have to either refuse the item at the time of delivery or send it back after I received it. Needless to say, I click off the chat and launched into a verbal expletive filled rant directed at the computer screen.
Next, I sent an e-mail detailing the issued to Sears Customer Service. I have yet to receive any reply. Then, I attempted to reach an actual competent, real life person at Customer Service. I discovered that such ‘creatures of myth’ do not exist. The two people I reached hung up immediately after answering. The third one seemed promising after I explained the problem, but then hung up after saying he was looking up the order number so he could confirm my information.
The fourth time I called back, I reached a woman who took great joy in pointing out that we shared the same first name. I explained to her that I received the wrong item and that everyone else I’ve tried to talk to has either hung up or not been able to solve the problem. She immediately pulled up the information and had me give her the product number of the item I received. She said that there was a return form on the back of the shipping papers and then I needed to fill it out, then return the item via UPS. Once the item was returned I would be issued a refund, then would be able to place a new order for the item I was supposed to get. I asked her where was I supposed to send it. She said that there was a return shipping label in the bag, which there isn’t and I told her so. She then backtracked, claiming the address is on the return form, and added that she would be sending a service email to me later and would appreciate it if I gave her a good rating. Then she hung up.
So, after spending two of the longest hours of my life on the chat thing and phone, I’m right back at square one. WHAT THE HELL?!?! Is it too much to ask for some halfway decent customer service anymore? You would think that I would be able to send it right back and get it exchanged without going through refunds/reordering. I looked up Sears return policy, and it says that I can also take it back to one of the stores. So…guess what I’ll probably be wasting time doing Saturday.
In the hours that have past since all this, I did a little bit of research online about Sears. Come to find out, the customer service at Sears has been steadily declining the last few years. Some of the issues posted on the Sears forum alone is enough to make you never want to shop there. One site, Customer Service Scoreboard, has 625 negative comments about sears service, 31 positive, and only 11 comments from employees. Some of the employee posts are helpful and tell you who to contact in order to get your issues resolved. Others are like this one:
“i used to work for sears and i know i tried to give the best customer service but you see we were not paid enough and our bosses treated us bad and that is still the case today as i hear that is why the company is falling because managers dont care and they are suppose to be examples but their horrible ones. i remember them just being lazy and never seeing them around. and then were always grumpy and never want to be their and dont give good customer service so you see this repeated cycle..” posted by Anonymous on 6/27/10
Saying that you don’t get paid enough or that the managers are lazy isn’t an excuse. I worked overnight at Wal-Mart for over 2 years dealing with weirdoes, armed robbers, stoned/drunk teenagers, and the occasional naked person…and that’s not counting other employees I had to deal with every night. Did I get paid enough? No. Did I get crapped on by customers and management alike? Yes. But did I give the best customer service I could every day? Hell yes, because somebody has to.
Overall, I’m sorely disappointed in Sears right now. I’m going to attempt to contact someone again tomorrow and see if I can get this resolved without having to go to a store, which at this point I doubt will be able to do anything. However, all I can hope for is the best.
As of 9 p.m., when I finished typing this, I have yet to receive any reply to the email I sent at 11 am today.
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