Thursday, June 25, 2009

"A Little Glitch in the System"

The other day I ordered some ink cartridges for my mother from an online retailer through eBay. The price was good, their feedback was hugely positive. But when I tried to check out, I couldn’t. The system told me “This order has no products associated with it.”

So I emailed the company to let them know I had a problem. I got a prompt and reassuring reply from someone named Janice:

"We had a little glitch in the system, which we have fixed. If you would like to try the checkout again, it should work this time. If it doesn’t please let me know and I will send you a PayPal request for the item."

So I tried again, And this time, in addition to the “no products” response, the system told me that “The company you are trying to pay does not have paypal account set up correctly.”

So I emailed Janice back, adding a screen shot of the offending error messages. This time my reply came from the President of the company. But it wasn't very reassuring.

“From our end, when we try to do the checkout there is no problem… In the meantime, would you like to pay direct to our PayPal account?”

I responded “yes,” but with a pithy note that “I am pleased you're not having any problem. Unfortunately, I am the customer, not you. And it's not fixed.”

48 hours later I am still waiting to hear back.

Why does management think that I care if the system works for them? If I've tried five times and it's not working, they should own the problem until it's fixed.