Dell is inept

For the last several weeks, I've been trying to unsuccessfully place an order with Dell.

Let me tell you, that company is inept.

The only reason I'm trying to place an order with them is because I want a powerful desktop replacement laptop, and they have the only one I can find with an 18" screen.

But goodness, it's practically impossible to place an order with them.

Because I live in the Caribbean, I cannot have the order shipped to me in the first place. They don't ship anywhere out of the US. So I have to bug a friend, or use a freight forwarding service.

So, I'm now ordering an expensive laptop shipped (against my preference) to the US, but the card I'm paying with is from outside the US. So my order gets canceled by their verification team.

I contact the verification team, they ask me questions, and they finally say okay, you can try ordering now. Can they reinstate my existing order that they canceled? No. I have to get in touch with their reinstatement department. They have a department for reinstating orders!

I get routed to some automated phone central, get handed over from person to person, spend hours on the phone, and I never can get to the fabled reinstatement department. The agents I talk to keep asking all the same questions all over again and are being useless.

Fine. So I place a new order again. Their website offers the ability to pay in multiple transactions, rather than everything at a time. Great. I'll need that, because my bank imposes a daily spending limit that's below the cost of the laptop.

As soon as I place the order, I find a "chat with agent" link, just to confirm what the limit on my card is, and that I want to pay in two installments. They tell me the first one went through. They'll process the next one tomorrow.

A few hours later, a phone call. An agent from Dell is telling me, in a bad English accent, that my second payment could not be processed. Of course it couldn't be, I reply, one payment was already processed today, the second one is supposed to be processed tomorrow. I am unsure what the status of my order is now.

A Dell manager follows up with me by email. I complain about their poor organization, and request information about the status of my order. He sends a courtesy reply to my comments about Dell, but does not inform me of the status of my order.

I foolishly assume that my order is being processed.

A few days later, I check the status of the order online, and...


In terms of pre-sales support, Dell must be the single most useless company I've ever been in touch with. Every single aspect of placing an order is split into separate departments. The people populating these departments are either powerless, or inept, or both. They speak poor English, and if your order needs the attention of another department, they can't even forward you there. The "managers" are just as useless.

Why Dell even has these people on their payroll, is beyond me. The company is simply unfit to handle any order that does not fit their automated process. The humans they employ have all of the autonomy of a cog in a machine, and are as helpful as a nail.

There are government bureaucracies that function much better than this!


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