Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Hanes, the Untimate Fail

It appears that the final resolution in my two month Hanes odyssey is, CAVEAT EMPTOR!  If you read Hanes Not Your Way and Hanes Continues to Fail, you know that on January 22, I ordered 6 items, two of which (deep navy and light steel #H5580) turned out to be out of stock and back ordered.

You also know that each time they gave me a projected delivery date, it would pass and be replaced by another projected delivery date.  After NUMEROUS calls to customer support, on 3/12 I came to a semi resolution with a customer support manager.  She located one of the items in an outlet store, substituted a different style for the other one she could not locate, and said the substitution was not a replacement for the back ordered one, which I would get when it came in.

Well there were a few problems.  Apparently, the clerk in the outlet store had problem, because the deep navy turned out to be black and identical to one of the items that WAS shipped earlier.  Maybe they were saving money on lighting or maybe there was a color blind issue, but the color was wrong.

But things took a turn for the worse today when I got an email with the status update of the light steel that was projected to ship yesterday.  I expected to see that another delivery date had come and gone.  In a way it did, because IT IS SOLD OUT!!!

That raises a few issues, because the item has not been in stock since January 22, but has been continually sold since then, to hundreds or even thousands of customers.  I assume that like me, each sale had a  projected delivery dates 6-10 days after the sale.  I assume that like me, each delivery date has come and gone, and been replaced by a new delivery date, which has come and gone.  Finally, I assume that hundreds, if not thousands of people received an email similar to the one I received today, which states the product is sold out.

I can only wonder how many other styles and how many other customers have been treated the same way.  Sorry, Hanes.  This is the ultimate fail.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Hanes Continues to Fail

This is a follow up to my post of 2/23/15 titled, "Hanes Not Your Way."

The March 9 projected ship date has come and gone. I called the order line. They said they are still backordered and the new projected date is April 6. (This is the third projected date that has come and gone.)

I then went online and started to place an order to the item I have been waiting for since Jan. 22. If I purchase today, the website is projecting a ship date of March 23. That means anyone ordering today is being told their item will ship a week before someone who ordered on Jan. 22. I have duplicated these same same steps THREE times since I ordered in Jan., each time with the same outcome.

Earlier today, I called customer support and spoke with a manager. I am no longer asking when my order will be shipped, because three projected dates have come and gone.  It's like hearing, "The check is in the mail."

The question I posed was, "How can Hanes legally continue to sell a product it has not had in stock for a month and a half and CONSISTANTLY project earlier delivery dates to people ordering today, than to folks who ordered on Jan. 22, and are still waiting for their orders?"

I went on to state that at the very best, this is horrible internal communications and processes. At the worst, it is possibly deceptive advertising and consumer fraud. It could impact thousands of items on backorder.

If that is the case, it is not an individual customer service issue, but a practice that could involve state or federal consumer law.

To date, Hanes has had not acceptable explanations and the only thing customer support has done is tell me I could continue to wait or to cancel my order.  The manager said she would look into the issue and let know what she found out.

At this point, it is not about my order, I will not cancel and will continue to document and report on the progress of this issue until it is resolved one way or another.

Update 3/12/15

The Hanes customer support manager never called back.  Today, I called in again and spoke with another manager.  This time, I informed her that I was recording the conversation for customer satisfaction.  In short I told her that I had given up on trying to get an answer to when my backordered items would arrive.  All that was happening is was the promised date would pass and I would be given another date.

I told her that at best, they had horrible internal communication and web site updating, and at worst they were engaged in deceptive advertizing.  If it was happening to me, it was happening to hundreds, if not thousands of other customers.  I now just wanted an answer to my question of how Hanes could continue to sell an item they do not have, do not know when they will have, and are projecting a ship date to current customers, earlier than they project for me, someone who ordered on Jan. 22.

I think she realized that I was no going away or giving up and that I would peruse the matter until it was resolved.  She promised to call back within an hour with an answer, which she did.

She thanked me for bringing the matter to their attention and assured me they would continue to look into the communications and web aspect of my issue.  They do not have the backordered items in their warehouse, but she located one of them in an outlet store and offered a substitute in an slightly different style, both of which are being sent gratis for my troubles.

At this point I will pursue the matter no further with customer support.  However, I will continue to make weekly checks on the status of the one item still on backorder. and if you are having a similar problem, this blog is here for your reference and use. My next update will be after March 23, that latest projected ship date. 

I will close as is opened, with a statement that I am a fan of Hanes' products.  All businesses go through rough times with supply chain problems, but sometime you have to acknowledge those problems and make things right with the customers even if it costs you money.  It pays off in the long run.  It's sad that Hanes failed to do that in a timely fashion and took so long to do what should have been done long ago. 

Monday, March 9, 2015

Don't Get Gouged by Scratch Aide

My wife saw Scratch Aid advertised on TV and asked me to order it.  I knew what to expect.  I would order the over priced product and get charged shipping that would insult to injury.  As soon as I went online and saw the asterisks, and knew things would get worse before they got better.  You'll notice that you get the Scratch Aid, FREE wood fill, and a BONUS** of 3 eraser sponges. I saw that in order to get the FREE BONUS, all I had to do was pay separate shipping and postage. YEAH RIGHT!

Had it been me alone, I would have stopped right there, but my wife wanted it, so I decided to go online to see if I could just get the Scratch Aid and let them keep their BONUS.

Of course I went through the entire process, which included having OPT OUT of about a dozen different orders.  I bet MANY of unsuspecting people order one or more those additional items without realizing it.

As I suspected, I had to enter all of my information, including credit card, before getting to the point where I found there was no way to refuse the BONUS.  When I got to the point of the process before the final screen and confrimation, my $10 Scratch Aid was now up to about $29.

The thing that REALLY frosted me was that the BONUS was really a PENALTY, because you can buy the same items in any grocery store for less than 1/3 the price!  $7.95 shipping for three sponges, when you can get a four pack of Mr. Clean Magic Erasers for $3.14, is hardly what I would call a bonus.  BOGUS maybe, but not a bonus.

At this point, I said, "HELL NO!" and closed the browser WITHOUT finishing the order.   Incidentally, I've been purchasing things online since about 1980, long before the Internet, and I know the ordering process.  I did NOT complete it.  If that had been the end of it, you would not be reading this.


The following day, I received a call from Scratch Aid wanting to ask me about my order to see if I was satisfied.  WAIT!  I just went to the website YESTERDAY and DID NOT ORDER ANYTHING.  How could I be satisfied and WHY WERE THEY CALLING?  I DIDN'T COMPLETED THE ORDER!

Remember, I had to give all of my information. Obviously, they were using that to try to get the sale one way or another.  Red flags were waving wildly in my mind. At best what they were doing was shady and a violation of  consumer rights.

I stopped her in mid-sentence, which wasn't easy, and told her in no uncertain terms that I did not order anything and my credit card should not be charged.  She informed me that had to be handled by billing, who I could reach them on Monday during regular business hours, and gave me the number to call.

I called a little while ago and after a long hold, I got through.(No surprise there!)  After confirming all of my personal information, the agent said I see you ordered...  Again I stopped her in mid-sentence by saying, "NO! I did not order anything!  I never completed that order and my card should not be charged!"

At that point she politely told me that she would cancel the order, which she did.  However, that is a problem in itself, because I DID NOT COMPLETE THE ORDER.  If they had processed it, I believe that would be ILLEGAL. 

I bet hundreds, if not thousands of people, end up paying exorbitant costs in over priced products and inflated shipping charges.  In the end, it is CAVAET EMPTOR! DON'T GET GOUGED BY SCRATCH AID!