Consumers Speak: Lenovo’s Tricky Customer Service

Ever since IBM sold their industry standard Thinkpad line of laptops to Lenovo, some have worried if the quality of the units would suffer. On the whole, it seems they haven’t—they continue to review well, performance-wise.

Too bad reader Petro can’t say the same about their customer service, who as you’ll to soon read after clicking on the hyperlink jump, pulled one of our least favorite customer service lines: “Sorry, I don’t have a supervisor.”

Petro writes:

I ordered a laptop from Lenovo. Since I wanted it in time for a christmas trip, I picked a slightly more expensive model than I otherwise would have because their website had it listed as “in stock”. As I placed my order a friend alerted me (via instant messager) that they also had free second day shipping.

Which turned out to be rather pointless.

So after I placed my order for a Lenovo T43 with an extra “free” 512 MiB of RAM, I called to ask about the free shipping. This happened on 15 December at about 7 pm.

The order center was closed.

When I got to the computer the next morning to find that my CC company had blocked the charge as being outside my normal usage pattern. It’s freaken CHRISTMAS TIME. OF COURSE my normal Credit Card Pattern had changed. So I deal with the CC company, and call Lenova to reprocess the charge, and add the free shipping.

No problem, according to them.

Then Friday night after 11 pm they send me an email saying that “part or all of my order has been delayed”. Of course by the time I see it their sales line is off for the weekend. Their webpage still says that my laptop will ship on the 19th, so I’m trying to keep a postive attitude. Which is stupid when dealing with large companies.

I check again on Tuesday, and notice that their order webpage now indicates that it will ship on the 20th. This is starting to get annoying.

So on Wednesday morning their webpage still indicated that the laptop would ship on the 20th (the 20th being the day before), so I called their sales line again to ask. I spoke with some young man (I want to say “Matt” or “Bob”, but I really don’t remember) and he very cheerfully informed me that it had probably already shipped, but that their system was just not synced up, and that their shipping guy was “out” today, and he’d make a note to have this investigated and something emailed to me.

That evening I went back to the webpage to look again. Now it said that the laptop would ship on the 21st, which was wednesday.

So once more I called. This time I spoke to a nice Indian lady who gave her name as “Gatha”. Well, calling her nice was a little much as she sounded rather harried when I first got through to her. And after she told me that my order would ship sometime between now and FRIDAY the 23rd, I requested to be put in touch with a supervisor.

Then she lied to me. “I don’t have a Supervisor”.

I don’t like being lied to. It really frosts me. We went around like this a couple times. She at first insisted that she did not /have/ a supervisor, and then when I pointed out that EVERYONE in a corporation has a supervisor, up to and sometimes including the CEO, she indicated that they were not in (which I suspect was another lie), and that I would have to call back in the morning when they were in.

At that point Lenovo had lied to me AT LEAST 3 times, so I informed “Gatha” that I wanted to cancel my order.

She said she *could not* because the label had been printed, and the laptop was ready to ship in China.

*Could not*?

She indicated that she could “send a note” to try to cancel it, but it still might ship. I informed her that I would be contacting my credit card company to refuse the charge, and would refuse delivery on the laptop should it arrive.

This is from (purportedly) one of the largest laptop manufacturers in the world.

If their ordering and shipping is this screwed up, how can I trust their service?