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Sales and level of customer care

Locally here in southern Finland, the gut feeling tells that many private clients (citizens) are in need of customized IT services. It means that still many are left in a gap between the hardware vendors, resellers, and consultants. In English: When your PC is glogged up (software settings set up wrong, or hardware failing) the first point of contact might not be able to give care.

Finland has a total population of about 5,200,000 people as of 2010. There are millions of PCs (laptops and desktops) in the country. The southern segment is about 1/5 of the whole population.

Consumer electronics are selling very hotly. Usually PCs last for about 2-7 years, after which they are replaced. The trend is a little bit worrying sometimes. Due to increasing sophistication of hardware (smaller components, which are harder to replace – the same kind of development that happens with cars) there seems to be a mentality of use and replace; electronics engineers with handcraft skills and tools good enough to do repair are rare.

The clockwork engineering -tradition has been turning into modular bulk engineering, where whole motherboards or other large entities are changed at one time, even without a lot of discretion and analysis of the situation. Why? Because both on private and business sector, time is money. People don’t want to wait. I wouldn’t want to wait either for my PC to arrive from the maintenance.

I personally encountered a facade of a big company. It was quite frustrating. I had a product which clearly did not work as it should have. It gave me an output worth zero euros. I had to run to the seventh customer care rep to talk my way into nullifying the invoices and returning the product.

The 7th! Had I been left to my own devices and just given up in the first place, it would’ve cost me almost 1000 euros. For nothing.

So; for private clients: be persistent. Talk, explain, and visualize. Do what it takes if you have a faulty product. And for the vendors: in the long run, good customer care is perhaps THE biggest factor that guarantees good sales figures.

yours,
Jukka

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