On April 11, nearly a month after Sean told me he was waiting to hear from corporate with further instructions, I got a call from Pat, the new tech services manager at the store, asking if I was going to pick up my computer that had been sitting there for 3.5 weeks.
As he explained it, Sean’s no longer at the store (I have no idea the circumstances of this), but he apparently either didn’t follow up before he left, or didn’t hand it off to Pat (his replacement), so all Pat knew was that the note in the system said I’d been called to tell me that the computer had passed the burn in test. Our conversation was the first he’d ever heard of the screen problem or the corporate escalation of my case. I was rather upset that, after all these delays, holdups, and general screwups, my computer had now literally sat on a shelf ignored for 3.5 weeks, and asked him to please call Mr. Hain to verify the situation and then FIX IT!
About a week later Pat called to tell me that he’d ordered a new LCD screen for me, and was expecting it in 2-3 days, and would call me when it was ready. Finally, last Thursday, I went in to pick it up, took it home, and it appears to be working properly after a couple days burning it in. They even replaced every last screw and screw cover, save the self-stick tabs on the bottom of the case (but those were missing from a prior repair, so no biggie).
The only end left dangling is the store credit Sean promised me back in January to make up for all the hassles, which was a pretty insulting token amount all considered even then, before he backed out of the alternative option of extending the service contract (he told me he didn’t realize the plan had already expired, and as such he couldn’t extend it, and had no business offering the extension to begin with, oops). He told me a number of times that he’d do the credit, but had to talk to Keith, the ops manager, to get it approved, but of course neither of them ever followed up and both of them ignored multiple messages asking them to call me about it.
When I picked up the computer last week, I asked about this, and was told that neither Keith nor Pat were in, so I’d have to speak with them. Karim, the sales manager, told me he’d leave my info for both of them and ask them to call me first thing last Friday, and assured me that Pat is a great guy and would do anything and everything to make sure I was satisfied.
Come Monday afternoon, I still hadn’t heard back, so I went by the store again. I asked at the counter if Pat or Keith was in, and was told that no, Pat had already left for the day, I could talk to Karim. I went to Karim, and he said he’d talked to Pat and Keith, but they didn’t know anything about the credit Sean had promised, and were waiting to hear back from Mr. Hain.
Karim went with me to the counter, to the same employee who not 30 seconds earlier told me Pat wasn’t there, and asked if Pat was in. The very same employee told Karim that yes, Pat was in fact in. Karim asked him to get him, as it was very important, and a minute later Pat came up, jacket on, on his way out the door.
Pat promised to have Keith call me, and surprisingly enough, the next morning Keith actually did call back as I was on my way to work. We went back and forth a bit, and finally he agreed to give me a credit for an amount that, while nowhere near compensation for the crap they’ve put me through for the last 7 months, at least makes it slightly better (hell, it just barely covers a reasonable hourly rate for all the time I’ve had to lose calling them and travelling back and forth to the store, let alone all the lost hours because I was without the computer). We agreed that I’d come by Saturday afternoon (since he is only there during the business day, and I’m at the shop then during the week) to get the credit sorted out.
On another related note, while I was picking up my computer, one of the employees at the store told me that another unhappy customer of the store recently complained to one of the news stations here in the city, and they actually brought a camera crew to the store, end result being a complete refund and replacement. I haven’t been able to find details of the story or what exactly happened, but apparently it was on ch 11, WPIX. If anybody knows anything, do let me know!