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Customer Service and ASUS

May 14, 2012

One of the key items in my line of business is trying to explain to people that the purpose of their work is not to satisfy standards and models but to focus on customer service and quality. Quality is the only thing you have to sell – all your products and services can be found somewhere else, and can be found cheaper, but your quality is your trademark and is specific to you. This is even more important when working with products like “CMMI for Services”.

It is therefore particularly frustrating when I come across service and quality as bad as that offered by the computer manufacturer Asus.

I was looking for a tablet PC which would allow me to do my work and have graphic (drawing) capabilities to allow me to illustrate and highlight items. I needed something that would run Microsoft Office and would allow me to connect a keyboard, mouse, overhead projector, etc. After some research, I decided that the “Asus Eee Slate EP121” (http://www.asus.com/Eee/Eee_Pad/Eee_Slate_EP121/). The slate I received had the stylus stuck in its holder and could not be removed, however this was exchanged under warranty (by Amazon), the second one I received had a backlight that did not work, so the screen remained dark – this was replaced under warranty (by Amazon). The third one worked correctly.

As I travel a lot for work, I decided it was safer to purchase a spare charger and a spare stylus, however I could not find anyone selling these separately. It seemed that they did not sell spares and the charger was not replaceable by another as the combination of the size of the pin and the voltage where not compatible with other chargers commonly sold.

Then, beginning of April, the charger stopped working. I had not moved the laptop, and was working on it so did not realise that it was not charging until it booted down because the battery was empty – even though it was plugged in. I contacted Asus and they said they would replace the charger and arrange for collection, they also gave me the information for a reseller in Sweden who sold spare parts. So I finally managed to order a spare charger and stylus, while my existing charger was picked up to be replaced as promised.

That was beginning of April. I have not been able to use my Asus computer since then. I have received no information from either the Swedish retailer (www.asusparts.eu) or the Asus repair centre.

When I contacted the Swedish retailer, I was told they would ship the same week (two weeks ago). When I contacted them again, I was told that they hoped to ship end of May – nearly two months after they took my money.

When I contacted Asus customer support, I was told that they had determined that the charger had suffered “customer induced damage” and I would be contacted to ask if I agreed to pay for the repair. Two weeks later, when I asked what was happening and when I would hear something, I was told that they had determined that the charger had suffered “customer induced damage” and I would be contacted to ask if I agreed to pay for the repair!

I will never purchase an Asus product again and strongly recommend others to avoid their products as well.

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