Pep Boys / customer service
Warwick RI 02888
November 25, 2008
To:Jack Ajoyan Service Manager #196
I have, this evening, visited the Pep Boys Service and Parts Store at 375 Quaker Lane in West Warwick, Rhode Island. The intent of my trip was to purchase and install four brand new tires on a vehicle that I have recently purchased. Unfortunately, I cannot say that the experience was a good one. From unprofessional and rude employees, to delayed service it was more of an incident than an experience.
Upon entering the store two of the associates, claiming to be managers, were yelling derogatory comments towards each other across the storefront between the service desk and the registers. Not only were they being rude to each other, but they did this whilst another customer stood between them waiting to be assisted. After this episode, the associate at the service desk apologized to the customer and discussed the reason for his visit. Additionally, there was a mechanic sitting at the service desk eating his dinner in front of customers.
After nearly fifteen minutes of waiting to catch an employee’s attention at the service desk, I was able to discuss the situation that I needed remedied. I have recently purchased a 1998 Mercedes ML320 and needed four new tires as the ones on the car were bald. As I know little about how to purchase tires for such a vehicle, I consulted the associate who answered my queries with “I’ll help you in a second” and then proceeded to pick up the telephone.
Because it was obvious that I was not going to be helped any time soon, I made my way to the tire display area and proceeded to look at what tire I thought may be the ones I needed. I had written down the measurements of my current tire (265/50/R20), but the closest I could find to this was a tire measuring 275/55/R20. I asked the service clerk, Steven Ronci, if this would fit similarly or if he had any other tires with the measurement I needed. Steven assured me that the tire I had selected would fit, and proceeded to write up a work order slip. He advised my partner and me of the price, including labor, to have it mounted to the car, and quoted a time expectancy of one hour and fifteen minutes for the job to be completed. At this point it was five minutes after six o’clock pm, and Steven assured my partner and me that he would have this completed by seven thirty.
My partner and I left for a short period of time to grab a bite to eat, and were back at the store at seven o’clock. The automobile was in one of the bays, but had not yet been put up on the lift. My partner and I sat down in the waiting area. Within nearly ten minutes after we were seated Steven went outside to look at another customer’s car, and a mechanic named Stew stormed into the storefront. He was cursing under his breath and yelling for Steven. When he was advised by yet another customer that Steven had gone outside, he flung the door open and went to find him.
Minutes later my partner went to use the ladies’ room and Steven came back into the storefront/waiting area. While assisting another customer Steven was verbally assaulted by Stew who had hurled the door to the garage open so hard that it slammed into the sheetrock wall next to it. At this point Steven followed Stew back into the garage area and the two ensue to argue. Stew and Steven both slammed the door open and shut several times over the course of ten minutes. There was one point where all of the customers stood up from the waiting area and went to the observation window because it sounded as if the two men had come to blows. Mind you, this all occurred whilst a “manager”, Tony, stood by without saying anything.
At this point, disgusted with the display of brute force and poor customer service, I advised Steve that I no longer wanted my tires changed there. I asked him to please have the new tires taken off of the rims, and to return my keys. He advised me that this was “fine” as the tires “didn’t fit” the SUV anyway.
After my partner returned from the ladies’ room we witnessed, over the course of the remaining time, Stew and Steven continuing their argument. Stew, several times cursing and speaking in menacing tones while pacing back and forth between the mechanics’ garage and the waiting area. By the time we left, it was 8:22 pm. This is almost a complete additional hour from the time we were quoted. Not only this, but as additional customers entered the facility they were apologized to, and advised that the tire machine had been broken the whole day and their vehicles would take a little while longer to fix.
At no point in time was this mechanical difficulty relayed to my partner or me. We waited for almost three hours to have a simple procedure done to an automobile. Also, during the entire time, only two of the tires were taken off of the vehicle because of the constant arguing back and forth between employees and supposed managers. I am not placing blame with only these two individuals, but with the entire staff as not one person took responsibility or the initiative to handle the out-of-control situation.
As a customer and a person I am revolted and dismayed at how your company treats their clients. We come into your stores expecting to be serviced to the best of the employees’ ability and with courtesy and professionalism. I can say that none of these qualities were displayed by your associates tonight. This is the most horrible experience that I have ever encountered anywhere. I sincerely think that you should reconsider the value of these employees, and whether they are worth losing customers over. They seem to have severe personal differences, and anger management issues that intimidate, scare, and belittle their coworkers and your customers.
I will, from now on, take my business elsewhere. This company claims to “[pride] itself on providing the best customer care and highest quality work available anywhere”, and having “fully trained, ASE-certified technicians [that] provide sophisticated, professional, and highly technical auto repair and automotive maintenance services, using state-of-the-art computer diagnostic equipment, seven days (and six evenings) a week”. I’m sorry to say that this is a blatant lie. The company claims to have the best prices anywhere, but I would rather pay double or even triple the price to be treated with more professionalism and decency.
According to the Pep Boys website, “Taking good care of [your] customers and earning their trust is the cornerstone of [your] business”. I’m sorry to say that you’ve failed, and this “cornerstone” will lead your foundation to crumble.
I expect to hear from a Pep Boys representative as soon as possible. I am not looking for anything free, or for any services. I simply want to advise you of the mishandling, and to suggest that all of your employees be retrained – if not replaced.
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