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Thread: Amazon has changed

  1. #1
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    Amazon has changed

    Shopping through Amazon has always been a pretty smooth process, part of the charm. But, last night, I was looking at an item I'm considering as an accessory for my yet-to-be-purchased new lathe. While looking at it a message pops up that says if I order within the next 32 minutes shipping will be free. Well, OK, sounds like a good deal so I click it into my shopping cart. Next page, as Amazon does, shows other items I might be interested in. They were right. One of the items is the Steb drive center at a great low price. So, I click it into my cart also. Then I go through the check out process. That's where the frustration started. The system has changed within the past couple weeks. At no point did the site say the order had been placed and at no time did a "complete order" or "check out" button come up. So, I called. (that changed too, now you send an e-mail and an automated system calls you right away and puts you on hold. G-R-r-r-r.) Eventually a live person came on who did not speak intelligible English. Now, in my old age, I try not be a bigot. But, fact is, to do business one must be able to communicate with folks at the other end. We went round and round with me telling him I could not understand him and he just kept talking. Finally he put me on hold and another man came on......just as unintelligible. Like the first, he just kept talking I kept telling him I couldn't understand a word he was saying. Finally, I just hung up. Later, I called a number not specifically for customer service and eventually got switched to a man I could communicate with. Of course, my 32 minute limit for free shipping had expired. I explained this to him and he made the adjustment and placed the order. But, an hour or more, of frustration should not have happened. Without the site telling a customer when the order has been completed will cause a lot of confusion for others, I'm sure. And, in the Christmas shopping season, this could hurt Amazon. I know, I'll be reluctant to go back until they fix things. I sure know I don't want to try talking to those non-English speaking folks again. :soapbox:
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  2. #2
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    Frank, I share your frustration with the non-English-speaking folks who are working customer service. In the past two weeks, I've dealt with Bank of America, Dell, and one other company and tried to deal with people who can't spit out a sentence that you can understand. Don't these companies realize that by having people who can't speak English, they are hurting their own business because the public will just quit dealing with them? I'm usually pretty vocal and if I get someone on the phone who is unintelligible, I'll either ask for someone else or I'll tell them to call ME back when they find someone who can speak English.

    I share your rant!!

    Nancy (22 days)
    Nancy Laird
    dandnspecialties@msn.com
    FWW Registered Voter and Voting Member
    Woodworker, turner, laser engraver; RETIRED!!


    A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to his country for an amount of 'up to and including my life.' If you love your country, thank a vet.

  3. #3
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    That really sucks, sorry to hear you had a problem Frank, it seems that the call center thing is a tough one, customers want the cheapest price, companies want to make a profit, so something has to give.

    I'd suggest that you deal only with companies that are based in the US, and have their service and support staff in the US, who can speak your brand of English.

    I guess being mono-lingual in a global marketplace can be a pain

    Cheers!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Ablett View Post
    I'd suggest that you deal only with companies that are based in the US, and have their service and support staff in the US, who can speak your brand of English.
    Stu, can you point us in the right direction to that company? I share Frank and Nancy's frustration, but companies will continue to use other country's workers if it is saving them money.

    I saw a show recently, I think called "30 Days", in which an american went to India to try and get a job in a call center. He quickly got one, since he spoke english, and was making the equivalent of around $2,000/month. His co-workers said they had no idea the resentment the US had toward them taking their jobs. In India, a call center job is highly sought after as well. The program said that in the US, a call center job is not that desireable, I don't know never done that or know anyone that has. Just another side of the story...maybe.
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
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  5. #5
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    Woodcraft
    Craft supplies USA
    Lee Valley
    Carter Bandsaw Products

    Those three are companies that I've called about a shipping or billing problem/question, and I got top class service from staff that speak English just fine and dandy, Oh, I'll add BlueHost, this forum's hosting service to the list, great service, great people to go to when you have a problem.

    Everyone wants the best price, I understand that, but something has to give, businesses are not in business to loose money, but to make it. If more customers would support the good companies, the ones that make service and customer support part of the total purchase, then the rock bottom cheap price companies might feel a pinch, maybe?

    Oh, I'll add Grizzly to the list of good English speakers, at least I've not heard Frank complain about their English ability when he has to call Grizzly tech support
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  6. #6
    Could get ver political here.................put it this way
    English is becoming a second lanuage..............watch the news
    and fill in the gaps

    WoodWorking, Crappie Fishing, Colts, Life is good!

  7. #7
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    At least the jobs aren't going to Canada! (totally just having fun with you canucks, eh)
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
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  8. #8
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    I think one of the problems is that so many of the call center jobs have went to India that many of those that speak English the best have already been hired. I understand that a business has to make money but they really should have some oversight of those that represent them.

    And the outsourcing is starting to rapidly move up the chain, with programmers and drafting being hard hit by offshore sourcing. Engineers are next and at some point it will start to hit management.


    About a year ago I went thru a 6 week fight to get my DSL service fixed and 5 weeks and 6 days of that was trying to get thru the offshore customer service to get to some one local that fixed the problem in about 2 hours. I would love for Verizon to tell me how they saved money by wasting aboyt 60 hours of cheap labor and shipping two new modems, when they could have spent the same two hours fixing the problemm at the begining of thh 6 weeks.

    And the cable company won't even come to look at their problems unless I stay home through a 4 hour window for their convinence.

    I suspect if the shareholders would get smart they could hire offshore CEO's at much more reasonable rates than Jack Walsh or David Cote.


    Garry

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Ablett View Post
    Woodcraft
    Craft supplies USA
    Lee Valley
    Carter Bandsaw Products

    Oh, I'll add Grizzly to the list of good English speakers, at least I've not heard Frank complain about their English ability when he has to call Grizzly tech support
    Woodmizer
    Hartville hardware
    Oneway, last time I called anyway. Oh wait thats the Canucks, close enough though, AY
    Highland Hardware.
    Rockler
    Berea hardwoods

    I'm sure I could think of more

    About a year ago I went thru a 6 week fight to get my DSL service fixed and 5 weeks and 6 days of that was trying to get thru the offshore customer service to get to some one local that fixed the problem in about 2 hours.
    Gary
    This is why if I ever have to move I will only live some where that has Armstrong for a cable company.
    2 service hour windows

    Repair service at all hours

    and they will help you out even though they don't technically support Linux

    Local call center.

    My cable has been out twice in 5 years. First time the modem quit. Called them at 6PM. They scheduled me for the next day at 10am to 12pm
    They called back at 7pm and asked if I was going to be home. I told them yes. They had a guy in the area and he was here at 7:10. Swapped out my modem and was back on line.

    Second time the internet and digital tv where wigging out. called them at 4pm. again they told me it would be the next day. about 8pm I here trucks out in the street. It's the cable guys. At 9PM one of them came to the door and told me there was a bad piece of cable and said they would have to string a new line. They strung 1200 feet of new cable and I was back online by 11pm. A couple days later I get an letter from them apologizing for the inconvenience and 3 coupons for free pay per view or in demand movies.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Nancy Laird View Post
    Frank, I share your frustration with the non-English-speaking folks who are working customer service. In the past two weeks, I've dealt with Bank of America, Dell, and one other company and tried to deal with people who can't spit out a sentence that you can understand. Don't these companies realize that by having people who can't speak English, they are hurting their own business because the public will just quit dealing with them? I'm usually pretty vocal and if I get someone on the phone who is unintelligible, I'll either ask for someone else or I'll tell them to call ME back when they find someone who can speak English.

    I share your rant!!

    Nancy (22 days)
    That's surprising Nancy, bank of America has a huge call center here in Belfast, Maine (my county seat). They are talking about hiring a few hundred more people. I just assumed most of the customer service calls would come here, or at least be US based. Interesting...
    I have no intention of traveling from birth to the grave in a manicured and well preserved body; but rather I will skid in sideways, totally beat up, completely worn out, utterly exhausted and jump off my tractor and loudly yell, "Wow, this is what it took to feed a nation!"

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