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The Game Guy

Walmart

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Customer Service is a thing of Horrid in America. Don't got the article or stats I read somewhere, but we were rated on our customer service and it was teacherous!

I dunno what that would be, but I found these:

Wal-Mart's poor customer service may threaten its future

Wal-Mart Again Ranks Lowest in Customer Satisfaction Survey

Whatever Happened to Customer Service?

I do not have many Walmart around me, need to travel into New Jersey or PA to go to one. Too far really for the bargains they have.

Don't assume there are bargains.

Shop them once and just note prices on stuff (Try to get its USUAL price, not its SALE price, the sale price might be enough to shop there that time but the USUAL price is for when the sale inevitably ends) you buy typically, then go to a nearby store that you usually shop and compare.

You might be surprised.

I know I was -- because Walmart wasn't the cheaper one.

(Or on the rare event that Walmart is cheaper -- they often aren't cheap enough to warrant a special drive.)

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Fascinating. Apparently Wal-Mart only lacks in customer service where it can get away with it. In my hometown Wuppertal, Wal-Mart opened its first store in germany (and german headquarters) some years ago. It had the best customer service I ever found. Because the german discount market is one of the hardest in the world, Wal-Mart gave up after two(?) years.

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Funny story about Wal-Mart's customer service when I worked for Wal-Mart back in the early nineties. Their customer service was summed up by their motto, "The customer is always right". Sometimes I would have to grit my teeth because of the things that I would have to endure because of that policy.

 

I worked part time in electronics at Wal-Mart in a college town. It was freshman week, and the freshman at the college were all coming in to get stuff for their dorm rooms. I was called up to the service desk for a price check on a return. A kid was trying to return a VCR that he claimed that his mother had just bought for him at the Wal-Mart back home before he left for college. I took one look at the VCR and told the person at the service desk that we couldn't accept it. The thing was a wreck, we did not carry that brand VCR, and it had a manufacture date right on the back label that said 1987 (it was currently 1993). I headed back to electronics and didn't think anything of it.

 

When I went to the back for my break, what did I see sitting in the return cart but that very VCR. The manager happened to be walking by and I explained to her what I had told them at the service desk and pointed out the manufacture date. She said that she had been called up to the front of the store because the kid was throwing a fit. She let him exchange it, because as she told me, "The customer is always right". Stuff like that happened all the time.

 

-Chris

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WalMart oftentimes seems fond of putting up prices that dont match what they think the prices are supposed to be

 

Last time we went to WalMart, sign 'Green Avocados, 68 cents ea', the avocados scanned at 1.76 each. After getting a manager we got said avocados for 68 cents and they changed the sign to reflect 1.76, but who knows how many people saw the sign at 68, decided to buy avocados, and then didnt notice they actually paid 1.76 for them

 

It could be honest mistakes and such, but its far far rarer that Ive seen items scan for less than the price indicated than for more than the price indicated

 

Also, on the customer may/may not be right bit, one incident. WalMart decides to put Mt Dew cases on sale for $4, this seems very good, luring us to WalMart. There are no cases of Mt Dew, but much signage and papers about saying they should be there. So we get a couple 12 packs and try to negotiate them selling the 2 12 packs for the 24 pack price, they try to summon manager, manager says shes in the back and wont come to the front, just get rid of them. Over the radio. While we are standing there next to said radio. Phone call to district manager (very kind of WalMart to put these numbers on wall) makes this problem go away

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yeah... "the customer is always right" bit is a relic of their past.

 

-Chris

Its a relic of the entire retail industry.

And an urban legend in most of the service industry.

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Guest bave

Partly because the customer is generally an idiot in this country. I swear, 10% of the population should be issued breeding licenses.

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Partly because the customer is generally an idiot in this country. I swear, 10% of the population should be issued breeding licenses.

 

I have to agree.

But there is no guarantee that we might agree on the means to determine that 10%.

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Forgive me if this link was already posted: http://www.walmartmovie.com/facts.php. Going to this page at the above link and just scrolling down and scimming the text headings in black will give you an idea of Walmart's practices and all the law suites that have been filed against them. But I'm not going to discuss them in this post.

 

9 years ago, I was in-between jobs and had to do something while I was searching for a "real" job, and so I worked at Walmart for what ended up being 6 months. So here I will discuss some of my own personal experiences. I hated working their and I despise Walmart.

 

Walmart is an evil corporation if there ever was one. In general, they treat their employees like crap. For example, I was forced to work in an unhealthy work environment despite my complaints. I sometimes had to run the cash register immediately in front of the exit doors in the cold of winter. I was freezing but I wan't even allowed to wear gloves because then bills might stick together when giving out change and I might give people too much money back. I couldn't wear a coat over my blue vest I had to wear. They did concede and let me wear a winter hat though. But their argument for no gloves backfired when my fingers got so numb that I had trouble feeling if I had one $20 bill or two that were stuck together. But someone had to work at that register, so at least they rotated the cashiers who had to work that register so no one had to work there too much more than the others. How gracious of them to evenly distribute the inhuman work conditions.

 

Not only was the pay extremely low for the amount of work expected, but the the optional benefits came after a long probationary period at a very high premium for a very low amount of coverage. And since I now have worked in the healthcare benefits management field since I left Walmart, this fact is confirmed by my own professional experience of 8.5 years with literally thousands of various insurance plans. From what I hear, nothing as far as compensation and benefits has changed since I left Walmart.

 

Also, you know the adds with the bouncing smiley face that bounces to all the "Was" and "Now" signs, lowering the "Now" price? This is significantly more corrupt way of a store having a very high full price that will never be charged, just so they can say it's a certain percentage off. There are some local department stores that I've noticed have non-stop sales. The only thing that fluctuates is the percentage off amount. But you never pay 100%. The higher you set the full price, the more of a bargain it seems that you're getting.

 

Walmart takes this concept one step further, and what they do is flat out dishonest. Those department stores I mentioned above don't actually tell you the price "was" ever 100%, so they technically are not lying. But at Walmart, I witnesssed with my own eyes department managers just creating a "Was" price out of thin air to make the "Now" price look good. On many items, it never really was the "Was" price. And I have seen them even increase the "Was" price on something without lowering the "Now" price, if it wasn't moving fast enough. That right there is enough for me to know that Walmart is corrupt and unethical.

 

I do not shop there.

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I do have to admit that I never had a bad customer service experience before I worked there. Maybe it has gone down hill in the past 8.5 years, or maybe the store I worked at was better than Walmart's national average. And my only customer service experiences were for returned items.

 

If I needed to return an item that was $15 or less, I could go to the service desk without my receipt and they would give me cash. If the item I was returning was sold at that store in the past 90 days, they didn't question it, even allowing for people to return items that they may have bought from other stores. One time I purchased a Walmart store-brand peanut butter that had a trig in it. I took it back almost empty, and they asked me if I wanted to exchange it. I said no, and they said they would be happy to give me cash for it and did.

 

However, when I went to a competitor down the highway to return 1 Star Wars figure that was still the original package when I didn't have the reciept, they kept me waiting for 20 minutes while they looked through a book where they logged suspicious customers to watch out for. When they didn't find me they finally gave in and gave me the $6.99 so I could move on to my shopping, but then they had multiple employees follow me and my girlfriend's toddlers throughout the store to make sure I didn't try to steal anything. I guess that's because if someone wants to return a $6.99 toy still in the original sealed package and they don't have a reciept, they must be a criminal up to no good. And of course I don't shop lift, so they wasted their emplyee resources on me while they could have been helping other customers or doing productive work that might help keep their bottom line down. To me, that's crappy service, and stopped going to that store.

 

And now I don't go to that store or Walmart.

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Guest bave

Whill,

 

You are missing the point. Walmart treats their employees like that because they can. They generally hire people who cannot find employment elsewhere. You were perfect for them, temporary worker with minimal cost.

 

For Walmart jobs you need no training, no skills, so you are just basically a low cost machine that doesnt get benefits.

 

If I ran a business such as that I would do everything I could to keep my labor costs down, much the same way WalMart does, now I wouldn't do many of the other things they do. In short, I generally don't believe people are entitled to any level of wage. If they earn better the supply demand curve will push the wages wherever they need to go.

 

Before I come off as a brutal tyrant, I do pay my employees better than most :)

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I didn't miss your point at all, and I wasn't replying to you, bave. I was sharing my experiences shopping and working at the title subject of this thread. That's all. I didn't post here to discuss/debate any points with anyone yet. I have no idea what your points are and I am not trying to understand your points. I was merely contributing to the general subject of Walmart. I'm sorry if anything in my posts mislead you to believe that any statements I made were in reply to you. I would have used the quote function if I was replyig to anything you said.

 

Sorry for the confusion though.

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The customer is always right.

 

I guarrantee that whomever came up with that is no longer in business.

 

:cool:

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I actually overheard a monstrously fat woman exclaim to another bloated woman "Oh, look, they have microwave pork rinds" in the most horrific slurring drawl outside of the deep, deep back woods of the American gene pool. I live in Southern California and on a whim went inside a K-Mart just to see what they looked like (hadn't been in one in over 15 years). Talk about dismal... I think I've seen Wal-Mart's future.

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I have two Walmarts in town.

North is very near me and has frustrated me in not having the Lexar 2GB SD card in stock.

Specifically as the 2GB version is only $3 more than the 1GB version -- getting 2GB for $12 versus 1GB for $9.

So after three visits I asked, "do they have it at the South store?"

To which I hear they have lots.

So I drive about 30 minutes to get to the South Walmart and there it is!

Except, now I must find an actual employee because the damn thing is stuck to the wall.

20 minutes later, I have it and am checking out at the photo department's register when she exclaims, "Oh, this is the last of the Black Friday SD cards. Its only $5"

I just got a Black Friday bargain TODAY!

Whatever else is wrong with Walmart, they won my approval in this specific instance.

Shame they'll sully this rare high point with their usual habits, but I did have to say that they can do right by the customer -- even if only by accident.

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Whill, I have seen both "Walmart, the high cost of low prices" as well as "Is Walmart good for America" and it really opens your eyes about how awful Walmart is, and is one of the reason I boycott them.

 

I have also read about the damage Walmart does as far as jobs. When they come in they do add more jobs to an area, but by the time they have done their damage to the community there are "less" jobs because all of the small mom and pop stores and other stores have been forced out of business.

 

So Walmart causes there to be less jobs in an area instead of more. And big box stores (not just walmart) go into an area that they arent needed to flood the area with floorspace simply to drive competitors out.

 

I was glad to hear that there are communities out there fighting them and I hope more people take up the fight.

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WalMart oftentimes seems fond of putting up prices that don't match what they think the prices are supposed to be

 

Last time we went to WalMart, sign 'Green Avocados, 68 cents ea', the avocados scanned at 1.76 each. After getting a manager we got said avocados for 68 cents and they changed the sign to reflect 1.76, but who knows how many people saw the sign at 68, decided to buy avocados, and then didnt notice they actually paid 1.76 for them

 

It could be honest mistakes and such, but its far far rarer that Ive seen items scan for less than the price indicated than for more than the price indicated

 

http://www.wakeupwalmart.com/press/20060707.html

 

Washington, D.C. - As announced late yesterday afternoon, Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard filed a consumer fraud lawsuit against Wal-Mart for the ?continued failure to correct pricing violations at their stores across Arizona.?

 

According to AG Goddard, ?each year the Department of Weights and Measures sends inspectors to retailers throughout Arizona to verify that prices are posted and that shelf prices match checkout prices.? Violations occur when a store exceeds a 2 percent error rate.

 

Based on AG Goddard?s investigation, over the past five years, Wal-Mart failed more than half of inspections and continues to violate the Consumers Fraud Act. The lawsuit alleges violations involve ?more than scanning overcharges at the cash register,? but also includes the ?failure to post prices for many products.? Aside from Arizona, two studies released last year also found pricing scanner errors at Wal-Mart stores in four states.

 

Released last November, studies conducted by the University of Illinois-Chicago Center for Urban Economic Development and the University of California-Berkeley found pricing errors in four states, Michigan, California, Indiana, and Illinois, among stores analyzed. The two studies examined the pricing accuracy, the difference between the shelf-price and the cash register price, at Wal-Mart stores and concluded the pricing errors at Wal-Mart stores in these 4 states failed to meet the federal guidelines set by the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST). The federal standard, set by the NIST, require that no more than 2 out of 100 randomly selected items from any one store may be incorrectly priced.

 

Over the last seven months, concerns over Wal-Mart pricing errors have led to similar AG investigations in Michigan and Connecticut. Since 2003, other states, including Massachusetts, Texas, Vermont, Wisconsin, Florida, Illinois, and Puerto Rico, have investigated Wal-Mart stores for price scanner errors or overcharging consumers.

 

Additional information concerning the lawsuit failed by the Arizona Attorney General is available at www.azag.gov

 

In light of the pricing scanner lawsuit filed against Wal-Mart in Arizona, WakeUpWalMart.com campaign director, Paul Blank, released the following statement.

 

"On behalf of all consumers, we renew our call for Wal-Mart to take immediate steps to address pricing error problems that seem to plague its stores in some states. As we enter the ?Back-to-School? season, no mother or father, in any state, should have to worry about whether they are being overcharged. The fact is that given Wal-Mart?s supposed record of technological prowess and top-down management control, there is no excuse why these pricing errors continue to occur at Wal-Mart.

 

Ironically, the solution to Wal-Mart?s pricing scanner problems is quite simple - charge the right price. At this rate, with pricing error concerns raised in a number of states, it seems fair to say that Wal-Mart will have to rethink its slogan to 'Sometimes Low Prices' if you are really lucky."

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