Best Buy Layoffs Larger Than Expected; 1,700 Additional Employees To Get The Axe

UPDATE: Yet another Best Buy tipster has come forward to share details and confirm/clarify information regarding the recent staffing changes.

In an e-mail that the source claims was sent from Kris Rosen, Best Buy’s VP of HR U.S. Retail, and Bill Thompson, VP of Field Change and Execution, the company finally gives solid numbers regarding the number of staffers being laid off.

Our sources have had no information regarding numbers, but a Minneapolis TV station first claimed to have confirmation that it was 650 Geek Squad staffers getting the chop. However, a subsequent Wall Street Journal report claimed that it was closer to 600 — but that around 1,800 retail employees would be axed.

According to the e-mail from Best Buy HQ, the Journal was very close to being correct — it confirms the 600 number, but states the impending changes will result in 1,700 retail workers being cut. In total, this means a 2% cut in the company’s workforce, not including those who have already been laid off in recent months following the closure of 50 retail stores.

The executives claim that the PR teams are working with reporters “to correct the story,” but not a single person at Best Buy has responded to any of the Consumerist’s request for comment or clarification.

In the e-mail, the company calls these changes “the next big chapter in our new U.S. Operating Model (USOM) that will better position us to deliver an improved customer and employee experience through a restructure of our store teams and providing a Winning Culture in our stores and the field.”

Reads the epistle from the folks in Richfield, “We’re putting leaders in a better position to lead, coach and train, and our sales and support teams in a better position to take care of our customers.”

The idea, explain the execs, is an “organizational structure that runs from Corporate to the Field and to the Stores.”

===ORIGINAL POST=====

As we were among the first to report this morning, Best Buy is currently in the process of trimming off the staff numbers of its Geek Squad employees. But a new story claims that the layoffs go far beyond the 650 in-home Geek Squad agents and that the company is prepping to hand out more pink slips to its blue-shirters.

The Wall Street Journal confirms that Geek Squad staff is being cut by about 3%, but cites an ever-dependable “person familiar with the situation” as a source for the news that 1,800 retail employees (about 1.4% of the company’s workforce) are also on the chopping block. Like the Geek Squad workers, these dismissed employees will receive severance pay and job-placement assistance.

Earlier today, we told you how tipsters at Best Buy told Consumerist how thousands of employees were told during brief conference calls on July 3 that they would be told about their future at the retailer within a few hours.

Our sources say that the dismissed employees will remain on the job through the end of July — unless they leave before that time for new jobs elsewhere — but that these employees will not be making home deliveries or repair/installation calls.

One source tells Consumerist that this has had a disastrous effect on those employees who have to contact customers to alert them to canceled and rescheduled service appointments.

In an e-mail obtained by Consumerist — and believed to be sent from Best Buy HQ to surviving Geek Squad staffers — the company says the changes are being done to “accelerate change, improve operating performance, and dramatically improve the customer experience.”

Consumerist has made repeated attempts to contact Best Buy PR and has received nothing but out-of-office replies.

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  1. dougp26364 says:

    IMHO, they’re doomed. We received an E-mail and a letter stating that my wife hadn’t used her BB credit card and would need to make a purchase to keep it active. Since we were in need of a few items, we went in two days ahead of the deadline. We picked up a GPS and two Otterboxes for the iPhones. Total tab was $331 but, they refused her credit card saying it had been cancelled. They called and Capital One refused to honor the card and wanted her to fill out a new application. I argued briefly and they refused to budge. We left the purchases at the counter and now have a bad enough taste in our mouths from the experience we’re not likely to be back. It’s not the first customer service issue we’ve had with BB but it’s likely to be our last. And they wonder why they’re going down the drain. Looks as if they’ve taken a page for the Sears handbook on how to run off good customers.

    • Coles_Law says:

      Sounds like Capital One was the jerk there, but I’d hope there would be a way to resolve that locally.

    • JJFIII says:

      Hardly a Best Buy issue. HSBC owned the credit card part of Best Buy. They sold to Capital One and are merging operations. It would be like blaming the University you went to for decisions Sallie Mae made about your student loan, or maybe your real estate agent when your mortgage company won’t act they way you want. There are plenty of things to bitch about with BB, that THIS is not one of them

      • SirWired says:

        But THIS credit card has the BB logo all over it. It’s the one they supply, endorse, and put all their credit deals on.

    • incident_man says:

      You’re better off using a Visa or AMEX card at BB, instead of their in-house offering anyway. If you need to return an item and they won’t accept the return due to their “return policy”, it’s far easier to get satisfaction from Visa or AMEX than to use BB’s card. I speak from experience on this one; NEVER use a company’s own credit card/financing option for ANYTHING unless you absolutely have to. You literally have no recourse if something goes sour.

      • RvLeshrac says:

        I like the way nothing you said in any way addresses a single one of the complaints.

        The solution for “This steak tastes like shit” is not “Become a vegetarian.”

        • incident_man says:

          The previous commenter said they had trouble trying to use BB’s card when it should have been valid. OK, fine, then use another card like Visa or AMEX, rather than take another hit on your credit report for another stupid BB card. The BB card isn’t worth it; they wouldn’t have qualified for any of the sweetheart deferred interest anyway because the purchase wouldn’t have even come close to the amount needed to qualify. That’s the only benefit the BB card offers is the deferred/no interest promo IMHO. BB’s interest rate is horrendous anyway, much worse than what a typical Visa or AMEX offers.

          I tried to offer good advice when it comes to using any in-store card, but WTF do I know anyway; I’ve only been a consumer for about 30 years……………..

          /snark

    • bravohotel01 says:

      Any time someone pressures you to do something (“limited time offer!”; ” this offer will not be repeated!”; etc.), your best option is to WALK AWAY.

      If you take them up on it, my friend, you are a sucker, with all the benefits thereof.

    • wackydan says:

      Never use department store cards… never a good deal.

  2. blackstaffer says:

    I mostly stopped shopping there because of their high prices and failure to price match their competitors properly. They’ll make any excuse not to price match it, mostly saying that basically any store that’s not a massive corporation is not a legitimate seller of the item and if you get past that…they’ll try to add shipping into the price matched cost (even though pickup is available).

  3. Peggee has pearls and will clutch them when cashiers ask "YOU GOT A WIC CHECK MA'AM?" says:

    In an e-mail obtained by Consumerist — and believed to be sent from Best Buy HQ to surviving Geek Squad staffers — the company says the changes are being done to “accelerate change, improve operating performance, and dramatically improve the customer experience.”

    If you can improve operating performance and customer experience by cutting your staff by ~2500 people, you’ve either hired Bruce Almighty or your service is so bad that customers are better off with none.

  4. sparc says:

    RIP Best Buy

  5. Fubish says: I don't know anything about it, but it seems to me... says:

    We knew this was going to happen eventually. They are circling in the bowl.

  6. DallasCynic says:

    And they moan and whine about Amazon killing them. I would venture that IMHO they are committing hari kari all by themselves. I will just keep going to the guy in the strip mall. He is extremely competent and it is a stable organization.

  7. nerd3xd says:

    Current best buy employee, the big talking heads have also cut the in-store lost prevention teams, so now the bad people will no longer have to break a door down with a truck to steal ipads, they could just go through the front door, seems smart.

  8. tbax929 says:

    Being the first to report things is completely overrated. For an example, see CNN’s reporting of the SCOTUS ruling on the healthcare act. Or (even better), see Jon Stewart’s response to the idiocy at CNN.

  9. Raziya says:

    The positions lost depend on your store, if you are a Community or a regular store model, I believe. I am fuzzy on details since I really only know what’s affecting me (my job is gone) and bits and pieces I have heard from one of our managers (who also lost his job).

    It seems like a lot of stores lost one manager, and every store with a gaming department and a gaming supervisor (me), loses their gaming supervisor.

    Meeting tomorrow which has more details.

    Also, I know it’s probably impossible to ask, but please show some respect for the people who lost their jobs. It’s rough right now out there in the job market and I’d been trying to get my foot in the door other places before this happened but it’s tough to find someone locally who was paying me close to what BBY was.

    Hate the company, just don’t hate us.

    • TheMansfieldMauler says:

      It’s rough right now out there in the job market…

      Don’t worry. The private sector is doing fine.

      • jacobs cows says:

        Odumba at his best.

        • bitplayer says:

          Hey, just so you know lots of companies are making money hand over fist and reporting big profits. These large companies have become more efficient and don’t need employees. About 20 years ago America started trading high paying low skill manufacturing jobs for low paying low skill retail jobs and to a lesser extent health care jobs but some of them pay well. We’ll never get that bloated retail economy back, it’s gone. Best Buy has been circling the drain for many years. The place sucks and I don’t buy anything with moving parts from them. Just look at the venom people have on here for Best Buy.

        • Kuri says:

          because it a company does bad, no matter the reason, it’s the president’s fault directly.

    • alexwade says:

      I feel sorry for you and the employees. What makes me angry is the ones responsible for BB’s problems aren’t getting fired.

      • alexwade says:

        As an example of how inept upper management is. My local Best Buy was a fairly busy BB. It also had excellent customer service. If you said you didn’t want an extended warranty, you weren’t asked again or pressured in any way. My dad bought a 3D TV from them and was suckered into an extended warranty. I told him to cancel it and he did, and nobody tried to convince him to keep the extended warranty!

        In a smaller town 20 miles away there is also a Best Buy. I’ve been in that store several times during the day and I would be the only customer in the store. Granted, I always was there in the morning or early afternoon, but the fact is my local Best Buy always had several people in it, even at 10 a.m. Guess which one closed? The busier one with good customer service, my local one. Although I don’t know, I am convinced it is because my local one didn’t sell enough extended warranties and other high-profit items.

        • Overheal says:

          Well thats the thing Alex, in order for a Brick and Mortar to compete with an online competitor it needs to either sell the core product at a higher price (not happening, in most situations, if you want to actually lookup the average tit for tat TV or laptop) or offer Services. If you aren’t selling services then you aren’t profitable and you can’t keep your doors open.

          I’m not sure how many people are aware of it, but the information is out there: the profit margin on core products is Non Existent. In most situations, things like Laptops are sold at a loss, sometimes it’s minor, sometimes it’s major. When you think about the number of customers who wait on something to go on sale or clearance, you have to keep in mind BBY bought that laptop at say $800, and sold it at $800 to compete with online retailers. Now, you’re buying it on sale weeks later for say $600. In another month or two it might go clearance and get sold for $500. Now, the store has made a $300 loss on that PC.

          And you get customers like that all the time. Most recently I had some Android-fans come in demanding to know when we would have the TF700 in. After doing all the legwork to find out for them, they boldly stated they were just going to wait for the new one to come out, then buy the old one.

          Basically, not to go off on a tangent, if retailers just sold core items and didn’t try to make profits on things like services and accessories: they wouldn’t be around to sell any of it. Some cities have already found that out, some of which relied on the tax revenue to help fund their emergency services.

          • vnlindstrom says:

            I agree with most of what you said, Overheal, and I think it’s not good consumer behavior to windowshop for Amazon at BB.

            However, instead of promoting services that were reasonable, and not too obviously designed for profit, and sold in a reasonable manner, execs with $$ in their eyes essentially trick customers into silly insurance policies with 1,000% margins to try to make up for lost margins on the base retail front.

            I have not yet seen a single service or replacement plan at BB or any of its competitors that was worth buying, even in the original days, before the fine print that requires broken products to be replaced with equally broken products in perpetuity.

            Sorry for the tangent from the original story, and I know the everyday employees have nothing to do with this. But having lost the battle for retail sales, expecting customers to buy things that are so obviously not in their best interest is not usually a valid turnaround strategy.

            • Overheal says:

              The profit margin on those services I could challenge, especially protection: it’s mostly down to the consumer making sure they follow up on their protection. I mean hell most customers I speak to don’t even claim on their basic manufacturer warranties and the reason they tell me is not because of having to deal with some guy in India calling himself Robert from Texas who works for HP’s warranty service department – it’s because they simply don’t bother. More to the point, they feel that “if it breaks within a year, it’s not worth fixing.” ?!

              I personally don’t follow the logic. I’ve often mentioned on here about my broken products, and I’ve always been a bitch about getting my warranties honored, and they get honored. Logitech on many occasions, they’re kinda annoying to get a claim out of, but they relent. Same with HP, and the Geek Squad handled my Acer claim so I don’t know how that wouldve went if I had to handle it myself. But it got results each time.

              The other big one I hear is “If it breaks I’ll just buy a new one”. Let’s play with this one a bit, and call it 2 years. Even standard protection, 2 years on a laptop that’s $450, the plan might be, $100. They replace the laptop with a comparable SKU, you can pay another $100 to get a new 2 year plan. And you can perpetuate this, so over several years you effectively pay $100 for each new PC. This is the same method by which (consumerist pointed out) that kids were getting buy with replacing $30 headphones for $5 a pop, just on a larger scale for a more expensive product.

              As for things that aren’t in a consumers best interest, we’ll call that judgement between you and me. I interact with customers all day and I can spot the difference between someone who would truly benefit from having someone else set up their PC, or Tech Support, and someone who is well capable of handling that themselves. And the company acknowledges there will always be consumers in the majority who won’t require those services. But on a personal note I find that for those that do benefit from the services, more and more of them are simply saying No because thats what all their friends tell them to do, or what they’ve read on Consumer Reports about service and support without thinking about their own personal requirements. I mean personally I’m not naive: I’d rather have a mechanic change my oil and do maintenance on my car because to be honest, I don’t know jack about automobiles. I don’t care how much information is available online about the subject, I just neither have the time or the inclination to trust that my vehicle will stay in working order if I mess something up. I need that car.

              I’ll just throw one more out there because I’m sick to death of these 2 sides of the same story: Customer A, who buys a $400 laptop and refuses the $60 accidental on it, even though it covers the battery, the charger, etc. – and Customer B, who comes in, asks for a charger, I go show them the chargers, and they act like they shit a brick when I show them that a replacement charger is $59.99. Then I tell them if thats not to their liking they can order it online, then then complain that they need it Right The Hell Now, and then all I can tell them is that seems to be a personal problem.

              I lied, 1 more: the woman who brought in her melted ebay-bought laptop charger, and complained about the cost of ours. “I only paid $10 for [this melted one] why are YOURS so expensive?” MINE DONT MELT. Crimeny.

              • jumbojeepman says:

                I have a different purchasing plan. If an electronic item breaks in a year, I never buy anything from that manufacturer again.

                • Overheal says:

                  Thats great – until you run out of brands to run to. “I don’t want a Dell because mine broke, and my friend’s HP just died and I heard a lot of Toshibas break and and and” – Honestly, I dare you to find one Manufacturer with a flawless record. Thats why warranties exist.

              • Blueskylaw says:

                “Logitech on many occasions, they’re kinda annoying to get a claim out of, but they relent. Same with HP, and the Geek Squad handled my Acer claim so I don’t know how that wouldve went if I had to handle it myself.”

                So when I buy an extended warranty, I’m supposed to fight them tooth and nail to actually honor the warranty when something does go wrong with my product? People are tired of having to fight for their rights on everything from extended warranties to mail-in rebates and will leave in droves to the next best thing; until of course they start screwing you too.

                • Kuri says:

                  Actually, I purchased the extended warranty for the video card I had in my computer ,and Best buy honored it no problem.

                  In fact when the store didn’t have the one I bought, they gave me a gift card for the amount and told me the closest store that had some in stock.

                  • Overheal says:

                    @Kuri we don’t even sell plans on GPUs anymore; I think at this stage we’ve narrowed down our vendors to Nvidia, XFX, Galaxy, and EVGA (in the stores at least), and as far as those manufacturers go the cards already have 2-3+ Years warranty from them, but we can honor the claims in store. I think the only real loss there is your card isnt protected from a power surge, unless those warranties include it.

                • Overheal says:

                  I’m sorry, but yes. Nobody is going to fight for your rights for you. That isn’t to say that as an associate if I don’t spot that we have a cheaper price on our website I won’t price match it for you without you prompting me to – I do – but your rights are something you have to defend. It’s really that simple. That applies to all areas of law, especially. Consumer law really boils down to the warranties, and if you want something thats effectively free (a replacement item) then you’ll want to be prepared for a little legwork.

                  You have to have a respect for the fact that companies have an obligation to defend their own rights as much as you do to defend yours. People attempt to get away with return fraud all the time. If we lived in a society where people couldn’t lie they wouldn’t need moisture sensors on phones or tamper seals on laptops. It’s a process, sure, but when I want a free replacement pair of headphones from Logitech I need to be willing and prepared to demonstrate that it was a flaw in design that wasn’t a result of neglect.

              • vnlindstrom says:

                OK, so there are bad consumers in the world. We know that from reading this site.

                There are also bad big-box employees, like the Geek Squad member who wiped my friend’s hard drive during BB’s “computer setup” service. And then tried to blame it on my friend, ever more vehemently, until the supervisor mentioned tactfully that it was a new computer that the customer had not yet touched.

                Basically, there’s a difference between individual human nature and corporate policy. Do you think if the margin on those protection plans were only 20% or 30% that BB corporate would be pushing them on you so hard?

                Also, enough people have commented here about Geek Squad’s general incompetence, so let me suggest that a company that wants to survive by selling service packages actually hire people who have more than a day’s training to perform those services. Some are obviously worse than others, but BB is hiring that team, training them, and certifying them as “experts.”

                And I don’t think I’ve ever had a warranty issue that didn’t cost me so much time to sort out that I couldn’t buy a new one in the time I could have worked in my day job. That’s why no one believes in warranties, much less “protection plans.” Many companies have made it such an onerous task to get any real satisfaction out of the matter that people are left with small claims court, which now serves alarmingly often as the sole arbiter of corporate conscience and best practices.

          • wackydan says:

            You are wrong to a degree. The price drops are sponsored by the manufacturer via their distribution and sales channels. So BB or others are not taking a $300 hit or even a $100 hit on inventory unless that inventory is past marketing with the manufacturer… and even then, BB’s inventory should be close to zero… .When Apple releases the iPad 4, they will credit BB and the like for the price drop on the iPad 3… for example.

            • Overheal says:

              Interesting. Thanks :)

            • Blueskylaw says:

              Same thing with new car dealers; somehow they are always selling cars “at cost” and yet the dealer owner still manages to afford a new Ferrari every year from selling things at cost.

        • Kuri says:

          Or they just knew they would have to pay the better employees more.

        • HogwartsProfessor says:

          Your local BB was like our Circuit City. I always went there and got great service. Now it’s gone. I don’t go to BB if I can help it because they try to tack shit on at the register that I don’t want. Also, it’s loud. Annoyingly loud.

      • vliam says:

        Well, that’s not entirely true. If it makes you feel any better, Brian Dunn recently lost his position as CEO.

        Of course, it wasn’t for his pathetic performance over the last three years and he walked away with a $6.6 million severance package but still…

    • One-Eyed Jack says:

      I’m sorry for your job loss. :( I know another person who got the ax from Best Buy. I *really* wish the company was doing better.

    • anyanka323 says:

      As a fellow retail employee, I feel bad for the people losing their jobs through no fault of their own. The people who really need to be given the pink slips are the people in the corporate office who ran marketing and came up with the whole “showroom” scheme.

      I’ve had mostly good experiences at Best Buy. I know next to nothing about TVs and cameras, so when my parents got a new TV, the Best Buy employee helped them find the right one. Same goes with the camera.

      Amazon is only part of the problem. The other big issue for Best Buy and other big box/ department stores is inventory. I’m guessing that maybe a third of what is available on my employer’s e-commerce site is available in store. That’s an optimistic estimate. Customers get annoyed when they see something on the website and they go into a store thinking it’s available. We can order it for them, but that’s not a good solution if they need it now. I think Macy’s is even worse. Certain departments, especially cosmetics and shoes, have less than 25% of what is offered online in stores. And by in stores, some premium labels and brands are only sold at their regional hubs or flagship stores.

      Customers are also part of the problem. They expect you to be able to price match when you really can’t to the extent they want. I’ve had a couple customers ask me if I’ll call Macy’s for a price, not knowing it’s a competitor. I politely declined her request. I haven’t had anyone request a price match with Amazon yet, but I can imagine that management would decline that request. I had one this week request to price match a Target price, but I couldn’t do it because I’m not management and the product they wanted matched wasn’t in the ad. Customers don’t realize that for not much above minimum wage you are expected to know technical and operational specifics on your products sold, do recovery, do visuals, and provide customer service.

      • Overheal says:

        I will vouch that I feel that the Best Buy website is in need of improvements. Specifically an overhauled search engine, and better clarity on Store Availability. Currently we get customers regularly walking in who think something is available in our stores because the page said “Available online or in store” even though you as the shopper have to check WHICH stores it’s in stock at by click the check stores link. It shouldn’t be that way. In fact it needs to be to the point where a customer can filter the listings by what’s available at THEIR local best buy, that day.

  10. dwtomek says:

    Best Buy needs to start looking for a sucker to unload their mess of a business on while it still has some value left.

  11. beanycecil1 says:

    Maybe Radio Shack and Best Buy should merge.

    Maybe Amazon should buy both chains.

    • VeryFroid says:

      That would make ‘Best Shack’ !

      • frodolives35 says:

        Its a little ol place where we can go to get screwed. Best shack baby uh huh. I hated the b52’s for putting that in my head.

        • incident_man says:

          “I got me a Chrysler; it seats about 20. So, c’mon and bring your Geek Squad money.”

  12. Hungry Dog says:

    I guess what they mean by “dramatically improve the customer experience”, is to send them shopping at Amazon and other stores if they have not already.

    • Overheal says:

      What do I do if I buy a camera from Amazon and I don’t know how to change the ISO settings? Who do I talk to at Amazon about that? Can they show me?

      If I buy a tablet from Amazon, will they show me how it works?

      If the computer I buy from Amazon gets a virus, will they help remove it?

      If I buy something on Amazon and I don’t like the color, can amazon exchange it for me the same day?

      • HogwartsProfessor says:

        Will Best Buy do any of these things for you? :P

        • Overheal says:

          If you buy something on Amazon and want to exchange it at best buy for a different color, I’m afraid we can’t help you no. ;)

        • bbb111 says:

          “Will Best Buy do any of these things for you?”

          Sure they will … incompletely or incorrectly.
          [at least that is what I got the few times I asked them any questions. (The few times I have been in a Best Buy in the last decade were to use a gift card.)]

      • Worldwalker says:

        Which of these can Best Buy do? If it doesn’t involve reading the box to the customer (who is, apparently, assumed to be too illiterate to read the box by themself) the staff I’ve met at Best Buy can’t handle it.

        Change the ISO settings? “I don’t know. It’s in your manual.”

        Showing someone how to use a tablet? “I don’t have time to talk; read the quickstart guide.”

        Computer with a virus? “Sure, just pay the Geek Squad desk 2x what a normal computer store charges, and we’ll have it back in a month or so.”

        Don’t like the color? “Sorry, that’s the only color we have.”

        That’s exactly the problem. Best Buy *doesn’t* offer any service that differentiates themselves from an online retailer. They’ve become a convenience store: you pay a lot, but it’s there when you need it, kind of like buying a can of soup at the 7-11. Given the way they seem to be cratering their business, apparently this doesn’t work well for things that are not canned soup.

        • Overheal says:

          Actually you’re selling us facetiously short, and I don’t appreciate it. We will gladly sit down with a customer and show them the features of their cameras. If that involves referring to the manual, so be it. The point will be that he issue gets resolved in a timely manner. As for box reading, the simple fact is not all information on the product boxes is always clear, and you learn where the information is at. The first time I tried to read a GPU box for instance, probably took me about 5 minutes to absorb everything on there; now I can quickly scan each card for it’s power requirements. What does this accomplish? It saves the customer 5 minutes. Is that, or is that not valuable to you, when you come in to the store? I for one don’t feel too many customers fancy the idea of making a visit to a retailer an All Day affair. If I can save them 5 minutes on this product, 5 minutes on that; if I know where to look on HPs website to pull up the ink yields; etc. then I’ve saved the customer half an hour, haven’t I?

          I’m sorry I don’t have every laptop in purple, but you have 2 options, and really, these are your 2 options no matter where you go: Let it be ordered for you, or buy something thats not purple. That’s all I can say about that.

          As for our Tech Support, here’s the thing: what does the computer shop offer you for a One Time visit? You say “2x” so I’ll assume $100. For $199 off the street you get 1 year of unlimited support and visits for any 3 PCs, In the Store, on the Phone, or Online (and our online was just Rated the #1 Online Tech service by PC Magazine). When you buy a new PC, that price is halved to $99. And in either case you get a matching 3 user license of either Webroot, Norton, Kaspersky, or Titanium AV. The service includes unlimited virus removals, diagnostics, physical cleanings (dusting, etc), tune-ups (Registry cleaning etc – I personally suggest letting them do this online for you, it’s just simples), and hardware and software installs (Graphics Cards, Power Supplies, RAM, Microsoft Office, etc) – And I mean I’m sure you or I can install our own software or clean our own registry but there are still plenty of customers who are no really that thrilled to do their own GPU and PSU upgrades, change around their video drivers, or, if they get viruses, are not that confident about the best practices for getting rid of them (and on a personal note, I always go for a reformat on my own things). That’s a lot of service for $99; that’s still a lot of service for even $199.

      • human_shield says:

        Most of these best buy employees can barely tell you where the camera section is, let alone how to use one.

      • Kuri says:

        All of those are why the internet exists.

  13. TheSpatulaOfLove says:

    I figure we’re going to see the Gordon Brothers Hucksters sometime in 2013.

    They just cleared out the Great Indoors by me – not a deal in sight.

  14. Crusso says:

    Hate to see people lose jobs but truthfully almost every experience I’ve had with Geek Squad has been terrible. I launched a complaint several weeks ago on thier customer service email and recvd a pat auto reply ht someone would contact me. 3? days go by so I post to thier Facebook page. Get an email reply from an actual person (since I publicly shamed them I guess) that they would assign my case to someone who would contact me. Well that never happened so after a week I sent another email to the person who emailed me. They apologized and again said someone by the name of Justin was assigned my complaint and would contact me. You guess it, that never happened. So now we are almost a month out since my original complaint and the battery that I tried to get from them for my laptop arrived today FROM THE CHINESE WEBSITE I ORDERED IT FROM ONLINE! I got it the slowest possible way from a Chinese website that had a very poorly translated English page and still GOT BETTER SEVICE THEN BEST BUY! And they wonder why they have to cut jobs!

    • One-Eyed Jack says:

      Justin probably was laid off.

    • shufflemoomin says:

      Ordering a battery from a Chinese website with no knowledge of if it meets safety requirements or what QA it went though? Brave.

      • sqlrob says:

        Yeah, no kidding.

        He should’ve bought a name brand battery, like Sony.

        • Crusso says:

          It’s a 2032 with soldered on leads and about the size of a quarter. NO ONE else carried it. I hardly think I’m gonna have an issue with a battery that size. The guy at the first BB was able to find it online but i have no idea from where. I certainly wouldn’t buy a main battery like that since off brand ones tend to explode.

          • sqlrob says:

            You missed the reference. Sony batteries tended to explode as well. They were the cause of the recall a few years ago by a lot of manufacturers.

  15. Extended-Warranty says:

    The internet is a funny place.

    Ignore these sensationally twisted articles, and look at the actual financials.

    Best Buy stock is one of the best bets right now.

    • 180CS says:

      Wow man, you’re so right. I mean, they’re almost worth an entire 30% less than they where 4 months ago. Now if you look at what they where worth two years ago….they’re on fire. I mean that. They’re worth less than half their value in 2010.

      If I had to jump on a financial bus gong off a cliff, this would sure be the one for me.

      • dwtomek says:

        If you’re really lucky, you might even recover a quarter of your initial investment during the bankruptcy fire sale!

    • BorkBorkBork says:

      Extended Warranty must be BB’s CFO…

    • bbb111 says:

      “Best Buy stock is one of the best bets right now.”

      …for short selling….

    • jeffbone says:

      “Best Buy stock is one of the best bets right now.”

      To sell short…?

  16. exgeek says:

    best thing for anybody is to steer clear of best buy they are going down the crapper also dont buy the warranty if you buy a tv after your first year expires the use old parts to fix your tv go to somebody with certified techs what they are going to try is recon the service call by troubleshooting over the phone and then send a part changer out to put the parts on and hopefully those parts fix it if not you have to wait another 7-10 days for them to order more parts to try and fix it parts changers dont work just because they only have to pay them 12.00 bucks an hour.best buy is a dying company they said the changes are so they can wow they costumer the only wow they are gouing to have is the customer saying wow this tech is a dumb ass

  17. Jawaka says:

    The real question is; when Best Buy eventually dies who will take their place? Sure many people will purchase online but most people still want a local store to visit and make their purchases in.

    • One-Eyed Jack says:

      Wal-Mart? Sam’s? Costco?

      • wootbot says:

        Yup. I still like to see TVs before I buy because even when the LCDs come off the same production line (as Sony and Samsung did until recently) there’s a difference in the software, so the color on one might be preferable to me but you might feel the opposite is better for you.

        The last TV shopping I did (last month) involved a visit to Costco and to Walmart (where I purchased). I price-checked Amazon. Going to Best Buy didn’t even cross my mind.

        • AngryK9 says:

          Best Buy is often overpriced. Recently I looked online for a set of headphones for audio recording. I found a nice set on Amazon, brand new for $30..compared to $80 for the exact same item at BB. It was a no-brainer.

      • Jawaka says:

        Walmart doesn’t have nearly the amount of choices or quality. They generally just carry the cheapest products they can find.

        • Overheal says:

          In the last 6 months I’ve gone into HH Gregg and seen laptop hardware which should have disappeared over a year ago or more (AMD Turion) on the shelf for $380 – because it was purple. I’m sure people bought it, too.

          I’ve also seen an iPad 1 still on display at a local walmart, this was probably back in late April of this year.

          The laptop selection at Walmart is also equally atrocious by direct comparison, and I speak in price to performance terminology. They had plenty of “bargains” if you had no funds available, but what you were getting was way under what you can get for your money somewhere else.

          I’d also like to mention that when the TF200 Transformer Prime came out, we had it for $499 and I believe if I remember correctly, Amazon was selling it when I checked that day for $680, owing to their limited supply situation. I can at least vouch that Best Buy doesn’t have a lock on arithmetically jacking up prices based on consumer demand quite like Amazon does.

    • BorkBorkBork says:

      I”m guessing Amazon. The only reason people might use BB is because they feel that they need something RIGHT THIS MINUTE. But I don’t see the necessary urgency with electronics purchases.

      • rmorin says:

        Nah, there will always be SOME place for B&M retailers. What will likely happen is stores with existing electronics departments like Target & Wal Mart will become peoples go to for either “need-it-now”, “am-too-darn-old-fashioned” or “need-to-see-it-in-person” products that Best Buy current sells.

    • human_shield says:

      No. Best Buy is useless. I’ve been in there several times, and they don’t have any inventory, their prices are high, and their employees know nothing about the product.

      The only thing they really have any selection of is the TVs. But even then they always fuss with the settings to make one look better than the other, so once again that aspect is useless, so I’m better off comparing specs.

      They should downsize and move into small stores in malls. Cutting their overhead and hiring knowledgeable employees and offering real demos would help, and offering competent repair/service (mainly mobile, for appliances, and in-house, for computers). You don’t need a freestanding megastore.

  18. CMSJF says:

    the company says the changes are being done to “accelerate change, improve operating performance, and dramatically improve the customer experience.”

    Sounds a lot like what they are doing at my company. Walgreens has been screwing its employees left and right for the past few years. All in the name of “keeping in line with industry standards.” The are currently “restructuring” my position to give me a 5 dollar an hour pay cut. It’s a shame too since Walgreens used to be a decent company to work for. I feel for you Best Buy employee’s.

  19. Frotis says:

    I find it amusing that every news site keeps quoting 3% of the geek squad has been let go…They are including every geek squad employee, which means in-store, administrative staff, etc…not very many of these people have similar job characteristics. What they really did is lay off 30 to 40% of the in-home repair technicians. Not such a tiny little number that people can look and at say “oh, well that’s not that much.” As I’ve been told, within the company they refer to the day everyone got cut as the “national day of learning”. Apparently Geek Squad has a larger need for people who can come up with flowery statistics and mind-numbingly stupid catch phrases, instead of actual Geek Squad employees.

  20. dicobalt says:

    BestBuy isn’t competitive because their expansive expensive brick and mortar business model has such high overhead expense. They simply can’t compete with online outlets and they don’t provide any reason to shop there.

  21. AngryK9 says:

    I’d like to see a company start cutbacks like these at the top first. Eliminate unnecessary executive positions, cut executive pay levels, and get rid of ridiculous multi-million dollar executive bonuses and perks first. That first rather than immediately going to the bottom of the pole.

    • dicobalt says:

      But executives bring value to the company! They did such a wonderful job making BestBuy successful. Oh wait… they aren’t successful. But to be fair it’s impossible for a retail electronics chain to be successful outside of a bubble economy.

    • Overheal says:

      If you recall, just a few months ago the first job losses were announced at BBY HQ. And I’m not talking about the Dunne thing.

    • Blueskylaw says:

      Imagine if Best Buy was the military. What would the servicemen think if they were being discharged at a rapid rate due to the bad decisions of their “superiors” while the generals wined and dined and for every battle and war the generals lost they would get multi-million dollar bonuses in addition to medals and commendations?

      • Overheal says:

        Personally I don’t see the management awarding themselves too much out of the ordinary. Granted we are all familiar with the pay gaps between line level and executive employees in the current capitalist climate, but my managers are not driving sports cars.

        Also perhaps a more proper analogy would be if I pilot had to make an emergency landing, what would he do: eject fuel, or jump out? If he ejects fuel – sheds excess costs and weight – he’s still there to fly the plane. In this analogy the company is too big and heavy as it stands for the management to make the changes it wants in order to keep the company from sinking. This includes remodeling the leadership structure which in many stores is ejecting not the sales staff, but the middle management. In my own store we are losing 4 of 6 supervisors and 1 manager. I have not seen any sales associate firings, in fact I have seen hiring.

  22. rlmiller007 says:

    It’s funny that these large electronics retailers just don’t get it. If you provide superior (and I mean VERY superior) customer service most people will pay more to buy something at a brick and mortar store. Unfortunately BB bought an award winning retailer in the NW called “Magnolia Hi FI”. ( they are now a “store-within-a-store”) They did provide this kind of service and EXPERT staff. There wasn’t a question they couldn’t answer.
    BB if you really want to save the company look at Magnolia’s business model and stop paying your sales staff peanuts.

    • I look at both sides of the story says:

      “Unfortunately BB bought an award winning retailer in the NW called “Magnolia Hi FI”. ( they are now a “store-within-a-store”) They did provide this kind of service and EXPERT staff. There wasn’t a question they couldn’t answer.”

      There are a few Magnolias in my area but all of the EXPERTS must have been transferred to other parts of the country because the Magnolia employees in my area are IDIOTS.

      RIP BB.

    • Worldwalker says:

      I buy birdseed and similar products at a local specialty store instead of, say, Wal-Mart. When you go in, you talk to the owner. He knows his subject inside, outside, and upside down. He always has time for his customers; he knows they buy his groceries. He can tell you exactly what you need, and it’s what you -need-, not what he’s trying to push this week or what he’s got the best margin on. He’s selling something that I want to buy: not just a bag of safflower seed, but his own expertise, not to mention service, along with it. He wants his customers bringing him their business for years to come, and he treats them accordingly.

      Best Buy could have done that. They could have had employees who really knew their stuff. Even employees who could do more than read the back of the box to you (and that was when you managed to get them away from that all-important gabbnig with each other) would have been a good start. They chose not to. They chose to treat their customers as profit centers and their employees as expenses, and then wondered why they have no loyalty from either one.

  23. I look at both sides of the story says:

    Goodbye and good luck. In a survey BB sent to me (regarding warranty service), I said in the comments field that if BB continued with their modus operandi (treating their customers like enemies), they would go out of business.

    I have absolutely zero sympathy for the employees. Their knowledge is superficial at best and they treat the customers as an annoyance. When BB goes down, they can work for CC. Oh, wait.

    • dark_inchworm says:

      “I have absolutely zero sympathy for the employees. Their knowledge is superficial at best and they treat the customers as an annoyance.”

      I can’t vouch for the rest of these assholes since I’m only there twice a week, but if I come across as annoyed on the phone it’s typically because I turn to one of my supervisors to ask how to resolve a scenario and either they are totally useless, or they tell me in the nicest way possible “tell them to go fuck themselves!” I have quietly said on several occasions, yes sir/ma’am, I think it’s pretty damn stupid too…

      • dark_inchworm says:

        I can also happily vouch for them having almost zero interest in properly training employees, especially those brought on as seasonals.

        • Overheal says:

          Actually as has already been leaked into the etherweb, the company has increased the training budget company wide by about 40% what it has been; and new hires will now be required to take a 5 day induction before they ever reach the sales floor.

          • Worldwalker says:

            Teaching the employees how to hard-sell better will not solve the fundamental problem: They know less about the products they are selling than the average online listing tells you.

          • dark_inchworm says:

            I actually was made aware of all this, but I’m speaking from my experience tracing back to the last quarter of 2011 (apologies!). Too little too late, IMO. Especially if your supervisor still spits a string of unintelligible acronyms at you when assigning you a task. They love, love, LOVE acronyms there…

    • Raziya says:

      Yes, you’ve clearly met all 120,000 people who work in BBY retail and know all of them personally. Be a fucking human being.

      • Shadowfire says:

        Stop feeding the troglodytes. These “people” keep acting like douchebags because they can. Anonymity + Audience = Total Fuckwad.

        Can’t expect more than shit from an asshole.

  24. OneRetailVet says:

    Once again Retail Corporate is thinning the one revenue generating area of their business; stores. Corp consistently squeezes the Stores in the spirit of “improving the customer experience”. When will retail learn, 1) fill the stores with associates 2) reduce the tasks that Stores required to fulfill 3) create a respectable work/life balance for assoc 4) Eliminate the Corp mentality “never enough, never good enough” 5) Keep it simple

  25. penuspenuspenus says:

    While it’s too bad so many people will be losing their job, I can’t help but be a little bit happy after a few bad trips to their store.

    Was patted down and detained at the Richfield, MN store years back when my friend failed to return a CD to the proper spot. Fun part was I was walking out with a $200+ purchase yet I was supposedly pocketing a CD. Whatever. They found the damn CD on the shelf and told us we could go. I demanded a full refund and stopped shopping with them for years.

    More recently I went to pick up a HDD I ordered online for store pickup. Went in, picked up some DVD-Rs, paid for that plus my pick-up order at the counter and attempted to walk out. I was pulled aside by the greeter who spent far too much time accusing me of stealing the DVD-Rs while ignoring the second receipt. Once he told me I was fine, I asked why he didn’t stop any of the white folks walking by and ask for their receipts? He told me he didn’t suspect anything with them and told me I should leave.

    Sent an email complaint and was told they don’t discriminate. Whatever. Fuck Best Buy.

    • oldwiz65 says:

      Racial profiling is so common in the U.S. The TSA is big on it, and the cops in Arizona use racial profiling so much it is their normal mode of operation.

      If you are a person of color and drive through some white neighborhoods in suburban Boston area, you are certain to find a cop showing up and stopping you for whatever silly reason (they don’t say “driving while black”) but it’s quite common.

      • Crusso says:

        Actually the TSA does not racially profile regardless of what you think. Anyone that does is fired. Maybe if they did, the average American wouldn’t have to go through all the extra, unnecessary screening.

        • Overheal says:

          Im sure on paper they are not allowed to, but you surely cannot say nobody in the TSA gets away with racial profiling.

        • HogwartsProfessor says:

          Timothy McVeigh was white. Terrorists aren’t all brown.

          Behavioral profiling is where it’s at.

  26. GooShooter says:

    The overall perception of this restructure is that Best Buy is the bad guy for laying off employees. The cold hard truth is that there has to be drastic changes to the operating model to become more profitable on the bottom line. Nobody is talking about the very generous severance package these associates are getting. Best Buy is not kicking them out the door and leaving them for the wolves. Allot of workers are getting 6 months pay! How many companies can say that? People talk about bad experiences with associates not knowing their product and solutions, who do you think missed the cut? Associates with the worse performance rating! Best Buy is taking your feedback and moving forward with it. Best Buy is the showroom for most .com companies therefor are forced to cut margins which means solutions become that more important for them. Nobody is making you buy anything or forcing anything down your throats. If you don’t need it don’t buy it! If the store associates are doing their job (the way Best Buy trains) then they will ask you questions to identify the best complimenting product that fits your needs. All you have to do is say no and move on. On the flip side customers come back to the store all day long because they didn’t buy this or that because they didn’t want to hear anything from anybody. No matter what they cant win because people cant form their own opinions and listen to the first idiot (dougp26364) that rants about their isolated issue. All I can say is that there are some really good honest people that still work at your local Best Buys that really care about the people in the community. People that have families to support and are hard working. I understand the negative rants are warranted for most people but all I can say is don’t feed in to their ignorance.

  27. Mike Brown says:

    Best Buy really should be renamed the Apple Store. If you are looking for any after-market consumer accessory, they carry them all as long as your consumer device is an i-anything product. I quit shopping at best buy when I couldn’t find a non-usb charging device for anything other than for i-shit products.

  28. consumer1x says:

    Brick and mortar electronics retail is dying. Unless its part of a bigger picture like Target or Sears it is not viable. When Circuit City closed here Ultimate Electronics took its place. Do a quick google search to see how that panned out. Couple that with BBs terrible service and you have a recipe for disaster. How can BB EVER compete with Amazon? Amazon has an austere warehouse in BF Kansas while BB has a fancy store in an expensive suburban mall. One swipe of a smartphone can have your unit delivered in two days. The management knows they are Amazon’s showroom, how long can that last? Commodity B and M retail is going the way of At&Ts corded landline phone rentals.

    • Southern says:

      Even if it is part of a “bigger picture” store like Target or Sears, it still won’t be viable for long. If those departments start being unprofitable for those stores, they’ll drop ‘em like a hot potato.

      I would imagine that within the next 20 years, many more brick & mortar stores (other than grocery, clothing, and perhaps furniture stores) stores will be migrating to an on-line presence only, as it’s going to be the only way to compete and be profitable. Everyone will be ordering everything from the comfort of their TVs, with free next-day or 2-day delivery.

      Personally I like the “order online & pick up in store” model, as you still get a better price than you would in the actual store (in most cases) AND you get the benefit of picking up the item that day (if it’s in stock).. Perhaps some stores will simply get rid of their “showroom” and start selling this way. Just a stockroom and a couple of employees to pull and deliver orders to the (waiting) customers.

      At any rate, it’s not going to be just electronics stores that are going to be in trouble from lower Internet prices; it will eventually affect virtually everything we buy.

  29. Obbop says:

    The more that lose their jobs or have hours cut or never receive a pay raise so that the ever-growing cost of living leaves them impoverished then………..

    The number of radicalized angry USA citizens grows and the sooner We, the People can destroy a corrupt federal government, dismantle the MANY systems, bureaucracies, etc. created to control the masses and ensure that much of the national wealth flows ever-upwards to the hands of the ruling masters and start anew.

    The corrupt economic system will also be altered.

    The required changes will likely only occur if patriotic military officers start a full-scale military coup.

    With many millions of USA citizens voicing their approval perhaps enough military officers can cast off enough of the indoctrination done by the ruling masters that We, the People are immersed within for life to realize that to remake the USA into what it should be requires a coup.

    • HogwartsProfessor says:

      Just stay off my lawn. I don’t want no bloody revolutionaries dying in my yard. Go die in the neighbor’s yard.

  30. Crusso says:

    “Out-of-office” or “Already-fired?”.
    Thier csr service has gotten worse and worse. Store stock is almost nonexistent in most stores I go in. CDs and DVDs sections are always either empty or dumped in bargain bins and the ones that aren’t are usually overpriced compared to online. Go into any BB and I bet you can find the exact same dvd on the shelf for 2 or 3 different prices marked. I recently found Deadwood for $89.99, $119.99 & $139.99 on the shelf all at the same time. It rang up at the $119 price because it had been reduced, then paced on sale and then off sale but back to the reduced price. They never fixed all the tags. Hate to see brick & mortar stores go but either adapt or die. And don’t get me started on the morons at Geek Squad. They actually make the Apple guys look like Genuises!

    • Overheal says:

      Media (CDs and DVDs) is handled by a third party vendor and the merchandising of such is not supported by blue shirt labor as I understand it.

      Also, media isn’t exactly a profitable sector with rampant piracy and online distribution like iTunes.

      • Worldwalker says:

        So what IS a “profitable sector”?

        • Overheal says:

          No secret that it’s Mobile Phones and Tablets that have shown the largest areas of growth. These are things which either require some degree of personal activation or hands on interaction before you’re ready to walk out with them. Personally I’d have difficulty buying an iPad online if I had never physically held one. It’s just one of those things. Laptops don’t fall into the same category even though they’re a tad close.

  31. maxpower says:

    When retailers have to get in bed with cell phone providers to get traffic in the door, its a sure sign they are in trouble. Radio Shack and Ritz Camera come to mind. Unfortunately for Best Buy, they no longer can offer the exciting shopping experience from the 90’s; the stores are boring, the sales tactics annoying, and what, they sell books, magazines, candy, and soda now? The store exists without a purpose; it cannot compete with Amazon online and cannot compete with Walmart/Target at physical retail. Time to get out of the big box game and go in a completely different direction.

    • I look at both sides of the story says:

      “they sell books, magazines, candy, and soda now?”

      I noticed that CC did that right before they died — anything to bring in some revenue. Like giving a dying person some adrenaline so that they could live long enough to utter one last sentence.

    • Demoliiton Man says:

      You are aware that Target and Wal-Mart also sells cell phones too, right? Also Best Buy doesn’t push magazines at the register. Just thought I’d mention that.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      Costco has cell phone seller booths in all their stores, and I don’t see them suffering in the least.

      • soj4life says:

        They were not an electronics store, they are a warehouse membership store. It is the same as trying to compare general purpose retail stores like walmart and target, they were not founded to sell electronics. When an electronics store has to sell non electronics, it shows that they are in trouble.

    • jeffbone says:

      BB has sold books, magazines, candy, and sodas for at least a decade; I remember seeing these items there the last time I set foot in a Florida BB in 2002…

  32. speling_champ says:

    I hope that Best Buy does not close. I buy a ton of stuff through Amazon (Prime) and really enjoy the low cost and fast shipping. But I still need Best Buy, and there are several reasons why it is a great option.

    1) We have computer emergencies at my job. When my boss’ computer dies I need to get a new one and start installing his 100+ programs immediately. If a video card blows a capacitor I need to replace it immediately. Sam’s, Walmart, OfficeMax, etc. do not have many options.
    2) Most of my purchases are tax exempt. Best Buy has a great tax exempt card that makes it very easy to remove tax from eligible purchases. Have you ever tried to get tax refunded from Amazon? If you were successful, please share some tips. We followed all the steps with no results.
    3) Items like Kindle or iPad have fixed prices no matter where you buy them. Why not buy them them at B&M? If you get a defective unit an exchange is very simple.
    4) Maybe it is just me, but I am sometimes able to get extra discounts at my Best Buy. I have even convinced them to match Amazon’s price on a few occasions (one Amazon price match was $40 off a $100 product).

    As a tech guy it is real easy to think that everybody has some degree of tech knowledge or skill. That is just not true. Just the fact that you are reading Consumerist shows that you have more tech skill than a ton of people. There are a lot of folk who do not shop online. Look closer and you will discover a bunch of people who don’t use debit or credit cards. For them, brick and mortar is the only option. Best Buy may not meet your needs, but don’t assume that everyone is like you.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      1) A local computer sales and repair show will help you just as well if not better in this regard.
      2) Online retailer might be difficult to apply tax exempt, but see response for item #1 if you want a B&M store.
      3) Problems with the product typically go to the manufacturer after 30-60 days. So buying from Best Buy doesn’t help you there.
      4) A boon for Best Buy. But if you are getting price matches at BBY from Amazon, why not just shop at Amazon? Or, see if your local computer store will price match.

      • speling_champ says:

        1) My local computer store has not given me a better experience than Best Buy. Additionally, returns at Best Buy are very easy for me. That has not been my experience at local stores.
        2) Tax exemption is easier at Best Buy than any other store. They don’t look anything up or ask me for the name of the organization. They just scan my card. They are much less surly than some local retailers.
        3) I have a 45-day return window with my RewardZone. That is plenty of time for a product’s defect to reveal itself and for me to get an instant exchange.
        4) I started my post by saying that I love Amazon. Amazon gets a massive chunk of our money. But if I am in a rush or if tax-exempt Best Buy is cheaper than taxable Amazon, I will choose Best Buy.

        I love to buy from local stores, and I have some excellent ones that I frequent. But for computers and most electronics, I have yet to find a local shop that can meet my specific needs as well as Best Buy.

      • Invader Zim says:

        Some people will still need the brick and mortar. A local repair computer store will most likely charge you more. It is easier to return a defective product with in the first thirty days than to have to mail it in a wait to see what the warranty provider suggests. Some folks aren’t on the internet, at all. So unless there is a physical amazon store to go to….

  33. cecilsaxon says:

    I have had nothing but poor experiences at Best Buy for the last few years. Crummy aggressive clerks running around asking if I need help and then know nothing that they have not read off the box (sometimes in front of me).

    I will miss my Amazon showroom when it closes.

    • Overheal says:

      While I’m happy to discuss a Frontside Bus, Shader Cores, Transform and Lighting, Clock Speeds and a pile of other garbage computer specs I don’t really find them relevant when reccomending computers on the job. For me it’s a no brainer between an AMD FX bulldozer and an Intel Celeron; You know I actually had a customer just yesterday think I was trying to cheat him, because clearly the FX is far more expensive.. he wanted to know what the clock speeds were.

      I don’t really understand this criticism so maybe you can help me out: if all you do is look up amazon for product information, what harm is it when an associate does it if you quiz them on something they don’t know? I do at any given time have to support about 25 printer SKUs, 25 Tablet SKUs, 50 PC SKUs 20 Router SKUs, 30 GPU SKUs and 100s of other SKUs tha make up accessories and addons like Push2TV adapters and external hard drives and cables. And thats just what is considered to be my area of expertise. Really not sure you expect me to know the intimate details of every SKU on the floor at any given instant? I’m pretty happy with the fact that when a customer comes to me and asks them to solve a problem in vague terms I know what kind of product will be a solution for them. Apologies if I don’t have the same working knowledge of 802.11 as a networking engineer does I guess.

    • Mathmatixs says:

      Think long term impact. Amazon continues to grow and then moves all operations offshore.
      Often we are unwilling to pay $10 more for a $100 item. We are willing to wait because that $10 is an outrage. We will then go out to a resteraunt to buy a $25 prepared meal that would have cost us $5 if we made ourselves. Then we provide a tip for there service.
      Are we not willing to “tip” a store for the service they provide.
      It will be very unfortunite when the time comes for Americans to leave the country for job opportunities.
      Spend wisely friends.

      • Overheal says:

        How do you think they are going to get by on moving offshore? The extra shipping and customs costs would negate any benefit from investing offshore or trying to ship baby diapers back to the US.

  34. fryselectronics_sucks says:

    A friend told me by text message Fry’s Electronics, where we formerly worked as co-workers, has moved to the Internet to focus the bulk of doing business, since the big box retail is dying considerably.

    Best Buy and Fry’s Electronics (the latter a private corporation) may be dying, following the demise of Circuit City, attributed to the factors, which are:

    Increasing competition by the Internet-based electronics retailer business, such as Crutchfield eBay and Amazon. May include Craig’s List.

    Quality of customer service.

    Obnoxious advertisement and in-store decoration, with the emphasis on serving the Spanish-speaking customers and the lack of Caucasian representation in promotion and store decoration with the photographs of “diverse” happy people.

    Dishonesty by the employees selling lemon products and execrable customer service, as noted by complaints like one-star Google Reviews and Michael Rivero (look up the search engine term “CONSUMER ALERT – BEST BUY” for the lengthy complaint).

    Di-ver-sity policy in hiring practice, preferring non-Caucasian employees over White applicants to represent the workforce. (This was what happened prior to Circuit City’s decline and closure by bankruptcy)

    Dismal economy. Less customer spending, leading to cuts and layoffs. I saw the closure of certain businesses in the area. Ironically, the majority of the electronics items Best Buy stock are made in China, Malaysia, Japan and elsewhere outside USA. Hurray for free trade treaties!

    Not surprisingly, Best Buy is a depressing company to work for, as reflected by the cynical look on the employees’ face. If they smile and cheer up, it seemed forced.

    Oh well, they can burn the BB blue or Geek Squad shirts when they’re discharged.

  35. sp4rxx says:

    “The idea, explain the execs, is an “organizational structure that runs from Corporate to the Field and to the Stores.” ”

    In other words – we can’t be having 3 uneducated people looking at the same PC at the same time and over-charging the consumer for simple fixes and “needed” software upgrades they don’t want.

  36. Outrun1986 says:

    I have been doing business with BB the last couple weeks, their 100% more for video game trade in’s promo gave me more money for my game trade in’s than gamestop or even selling them on ebay. They were giving me more than I would get anywhere else for games. I had absolutely no problems with them and every transaction was very easy, trade in’s were super easy and employees did not ask me to buy a warranty 20 times or pester me about magazine subscriptions. I will continue to shop there in the future.

    My take on it is that the store is fine for purchases just don’t deal with their services or buy a warranty from them, that is when they start to suck and the problems start to occur. If you really need a warranty on something you bought there are other places to get it from.

  37. nXt says:

    My friend had a meeting Saturday and he said it’s 2,400 layoffs.

  38. Lilclutch says:

    So how much really are the CEO’s/CFO’s whatever they call themselves getting trimmed from their lusty salaries?