Radio Shack / the worst customer service
I am a perfect example of a typical Radio Shack customer. I have made quite a few purchases there over the years, and when friends have a need for something in the electro-technical area, I would have been among the first to suggest that they visit their local Radio Shack. In other words, I was part of a strong loyal customer base.
The company however is being undermined by very, very poor middle management. Here has been the most recent very disappointing experience at my local Radio Shack. I recently purchased a medium priced Jensen CD/AM-FM combination player which was both AC and DC. I had been using the AC with regular alkaline batteries, and found that using this as often as I did, I was spending too much on batteries.
I went to my local Radio Shack (Edison, NJ, US Rt. #1, Wick – Pathmark Shopping Plaza ) and found that the Nickel Metal Hydride Batteries ( SIZE C ) were about $17.00 for two. I needed six. I purchased four that day (about a month ago) and just this past week I bought another two. The Alkaline batteries finally ran out so I began to charge the six Nickel Metal Hydrides. I was using a fairly new Ray O Vac, all purpose battery charger that was good for both Nickel Metal Hydrides and Nickel Cadmiums. I knew that it worked well because I had been using it for my AA and AAA batteries all along. The two most recently purchased “C” cells took the charge after a few hours with no problem. The four batteries that I purchased about a month or so prior, did not take the charge. I left the batteries in the charger overnight and found that they did not charge at all. I used a small volt meter to check them and they were completely dead.
I never kept the packaging or the receipt, because I never anticipated this to happen. It was a battery, not a device, and until this time it never occurred to me that a brand new battery couldn’t be charged. The batteries appear to be brand new and they are clearly marked RADIO SHACK, so where else would I have purchased them?
I returned to the store and merely asked for an exchange. The manager, who started to say his name was Edward, said that he could not exchange them without the packaging. I obviously explained that I didn’t have the receipt or the package, but, if he looked he could see they were brand new. He printed out the receipt and said this is the policy and would not help me after that. I asked him for his name and he refused. I asked him for the name of his supervisor and he said he didn’t know. I asked him how I could contact his supervisor and he wrote down a number, [protected]) that I called and called and called, but no one ever answered and there was no message.
I called to Texas to your office and was routed to the answering service for the Central New Jersey regional manager but never received a return call. I AGAIN called to your office [protected] ) and used the internal directory and left a message with YOUR service and never received a return call.
The return policy clearly states:
Merchandise must be returned in like-new condition (except for damage caused by any product defect) with the original packaging materials (including barcode/UPC label), accessories, instructions, and the original sales receipt, otherwise your product may not be eligible for return or it’s return may be subject to a refurbishing fee…Radio Shack performs a careful inspection of all returned items for signs of use or wear.
The KEY WORD is otherwise… I would have gladly subjected the batteries for inspection and then OTHERWISE had the staff replace them! The manager would not even entertain the notion that the product was defective! If this was a few dollars or a complicated device I could be more understanding. I even asked them to hold the defective batteries over night and try to charge them for me. The batteries are advertised as being able to be charged over and over again. These were CLEARLY brand new. The manager was unresponsive and said to me the policy was clear, no receipt no exchange. There wasn’t even any inspection. All I received from that store was an arrogant and inexcusable excuse for customer service. It is no wonder that these store are in trouble.
If these items cannot be replaced, I have been cheated out of over $35.00 for batteries that cannot be charged and never could be charged because they were defective and they could obviously not have been purchased ANYWHERE else BUT Radio Shack.
My wife is the national customer service manager for a major Fortune 500 company and practically argued with me that it would be impossible for a company the size of Radio Shack to tolerate this level of customer care (non-service) and an attitude of arrogance that can only be explained by inadequate or non-existent management.
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