Thursday, September 25, 2008

Dear, you REALLY suck!!!!

Two friends and I ordered a functional and oh-so-fashionable leather cross-body bag from a Canadian company called Roots as a birthday present for another friend.  I went to the Roots store to buy the bag first, but they had none in stock, so I went home and ordered it online.  I ordered it on September 5th, a Friday, in the evening.  I paid for standard shipping, as I believed a week and a half was enough time to get it to her before her birthday celebration.  Imagine my surprise when I got a call--I think it was on the following Monday--from a Roots employee--let's just call her Wanda--asking me to confirm the same information I had entered online three days prior.  My name.  My address.  The recipient's name and address, etc.  All the information they already had.  And had had for THREE days.   I thought that was the whole point of online ordering--that I'd never have to speak to a human being at the company. Then Wanda told me that she was now able to "release" my order.  "So it will ship out today?"  I asked.  She told me it would and that delivery time was estimated at 3-5 days.  I reminded her that this was a gift, and to make sure that there was no price or receipt in the box.  She assured me that this would be taken care of.  15 minutes later, after changing my mind about the shipping method, I called back.  "I'd like to change this to expedited shipping," I explained.  I was told it was too late--once the order had been released, the shipping method could not be changed.  So regular shipping it was.  I received an order confirmation by email and waited to receive a shipping confirmation as the email said I would.  I waited.  And waited.

And waited.  Then one of my friends who was going in on the gift started calling me.  Daily.  "She still hasn't received it."  "When did they say it was going to be delivered?" "Call them and find out."  On Thursday, the 18th, my friend left me about a 4 minute voicemail--our mutual friend--the one who was to receive the gift--had received a backpack--a nylon backpack with the Canadian flag on it.   A clearance, final sale, marked-down-to-$39.95 nylon backpack with the Canadian flag on it.  Not that there's anything wrong with that.  But it certainly wasn't the chocolate brown leather cross-body bag that three of us had sent her.  And it was received almost 2 full weeks after I had ordered online.  Happy Birthday, Pammie!  On Thursday, the 18th, I called the Roots Customer Service number, which I would advise them to rename the Roots Customer Complaint number, because there isn't a lot of service going on there.  My friend got on the phone with me.  We eventually spoke to Jackie, some sort of supervisor, who told us that standard shipping to the US from Canada was 15 days.  I told her that not only did the website not indicate that--if it had I never would have chosen standard shipping--but that Wanda had told me delivery time was 3-5 days.  "Don't worry," said our new friend Jackie--"we want to get this resolved.  Don't worry about your friend shipping back the backpack--she can keep it and do whatever she wants with it.  We just need to get the correct order to your friend.  I will check into this and make sure we have the cross-body bag and I will call you back tomorrow to tell you what is going on. "  Tomorrow, which was last Friday, came and went.  No call.  I called Jackie on Monday--"You never called me back on Friday and you told me you would," I said.  "No," she countered, "I told you someone would call you back on Friday."  "OK," I paused, "well no one did."  "I apologize for that," Jackie said,  "I sent an email and am waiting for a response."  "Can't you just pick up the phone and actually speak to someone at your company?" I asked.  "No," she replied, "we do everything by email.  I understand your frustration."  I don't think you do, Jack.  Between that conversation and now, I have spoken to Audrey, Robert, and Jackie, who I think is now avoiding my calls.  They all understand my frustration.  They all apologize for the problem.  But somehow, the folks at can't seem to get this problem resolved.  And they've already charged my credit card for the order they can't manage to fulfill.  After I blasted Jackie on Tuesday for not calling me back yet AGAIN when she said she would--for me having to call three times that day to get in touch with her--so she could tell me she still knew nothing --(Guess what, Jackie--I already figured that out), she called me twice yesterday to tell me that......she still had no response from whomever she was emailing at the same company.  So I very politely told her that because fixing this problem seemed to be beyond her, to please have her supervisor call me back the next day.  So, Susie, wherever you are, I'm here, I'm waiting for your call, and I know that you (and all your Roots pals)  are SO sorry for this mess and that you understand my frustration.  Thanks.   That makes me feel MUCH better.  Not.  

The most humorous part of all this is that everyone I speak to at Roots ends every call with "Is there anything else I can help you with?  Thank you for calling"  Yes, you can help me--just get the bag I ordered to my friend.  That would be great.

This isn't over.  It's getting personal now.  Stay tuned.

LATER THIS SAME DAY:   Taking no chances, I called Roots and asked for Susie around 11 AM.  "Hi, Susie, did Jackie tell you about my situation?"  Surprisingly, Jackie hadn't.  So I told Susie everything that had happened, or, maybe, that hadn't happened.  She assured me that she was going to read through my "case notes" and get some information and call me back.  4 hours later, I decided to check back with Susie and guess what?  Susie had gone home for the day.  And hadn't called me back.  I left her a voice message that said, among other things, that I was really very surprised that she hadn't called me back.  Actually, between you and me--I'm not that surprised at all, given Roots' customer service up to this point, or rather--lack of it.  Anyway, I need to get a good night's sleep so I can get ready to battle it out tomorrow.  Details to follow as they occur.  

NEXT DAY:  Damn!  My cell phone's ringer was off and I missed Susie's call.  She left me a voice mail that said that the item was being shipped out today and she would call me later to tell me when to expect delivery.  And guess what?  Hours later I called Susie, since I hadn't heard anything from her--no surprise--and guess where she was?  Yep--Susie was gone for the day.  I left yet another message for her on her voice mail.  I think I might apply for a job at Roots--it sounds great--the hours are great, you get to go home early enough to catch all the TV season premieres, and you seem to have plenty of free time AT work since you don't seem to do any actual work.  I wonder what the vacation policy is.  

TUESDAY, SEPT. 30:  The bag finally arrived.  My friend loves it.  That's what's important, anyway.


Beth said...

Ugh, thanks for the heads up. I'll make a mental note to never deal with that company.

It's so ridiculous that no one is taking care of this for you. In this day and age of Google, you'd think companies wouldn't want their names to come up in search results when the search results spell out in careful detail how much they suck!

Hilary said...

A sure way to get it resolved--call corporate and ask to speak to the President or CEO. Or write a letter.

As a side note, my dad grew up with the two guys who started Roots. They were nice Jewish boys from Detroit who went to Canada to avoid the draft. Just some trivia for ya.

Anonymous said...

Buy American!
your friend on sumac

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry for the inconvenience and can really empathize with your frustrations.

Don't you hate getting psycho-babble from someone who obviously doesn't care? Yeah. Me too. But isn't your brother a lawyer? I like to mention little facts like that when I am chatting up the reps. But then, I'm evil.

Steve said...

Call your credit card company and claim fraud.