Are You Prepared to Place the Order Right Now?

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My six year old Dell had eaten two hard drives within a week a few months ago - a sure sign that all those wonderfully compact motherboard-based interfaces were beginning to self destruct - but we wanted to hold out until the summer before laying out the money for a new one. Now, hard on the heels of tax payments to both the feds and the Bierkenstock Republic of Vermont, and some rather incredible payments to the folks who are putting together Corie's wedding, the fucker wouldn't boot last night.

Seven hours later I had managed to salvage about 50% of the boot drive that could be reformated and had reinstalled Windows . Halfway through installing Firefox, it started freezing for 30 seconds at a time, teasing me with what we both knew was inevitable. This morning I logged onto the Dell site and configured a new system.

Before clicking the buy button, I decided to call and ask two questions. One to get assurance that I could run two monitors on the new system so that I could edit my photographs without accelerating the already steady decline of my eyesight, and the other to see if they could delay shipment so that it wouldn't arrive next week when we were in NYC for the wedding.

Who knew that Dell sends their phone reps auto salesman school?

The rep answered the tech quesion immediately. When I asked about the shipping it went something like this:

ME: I won't be home from Wednesday throug Sunday next week. Can you arrange shipping for delivery after the 7th?

DELL REP: Are you prepared to place the order right now?

ME: That depends on whether you can assure me that delivery won't happen until after the 7th.

DELL REP: If you are ready to place the order right now we can see what we can do.

ME: We can't see "what we can do" until I know that the delivery won't occur until after the 7th.

DELL REP: Right now we are showing that the system won't ship until the 3rd and it takes 5 days to arrive. That makes it the 8th or so.

ME: Why didn't you just say so? That looks good.

DELL REP: So are you ready to place the order right now?

ME: Tell me the final price with shipping.

DELL REP: The system is $XXXX, tax is $106.35 and shipping is $75

ME: Yikes, that adds more than 10% to the cost

DELL REP: If you are ready to place the order right now we are running some specials. Can I put you on hold to see what I can do?
(My note - this is the "let me talk to the sales manager" technique)

He's gone for 30 seconds

DEL REP: We're giving free shipping on our XPS systems right now and I can offer you a $50 rebate for placing your phone order right now.

ME: Well then, let's place that order right now.

DELL REP: Would you like to finance that through a Dell Preferred Account?

I've spent less time buying a car...

2 Comments

Are you ever going to try a MAC??

This time around I looked seriously at MAC because of the extensive photo editing that I now do. But I couldn't justify spending twice as much to get the same amount of memory and HD space. A G5 would have been a better machine for my needs, but not at twice the cost. Then you add the cost of switching over all my software to MAC versions and it just didn't make sense.

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This page contains a single entry by published on April 24, 2006 9:50 PM.

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