Dell Tech Support In A Slump?

Dell made a reputation for themselves as a result of their high quality products but more importantly perhaps, their top-notch customer service.  Unfortunately that may be changing, which might explain their slip in market share as well...

"When the CD drive on Peter Ulyatt's Dell desktop computer failed this summer, he called the support crew at Dell (DELL ), where he'd bought the $1,600 machine nine months prior. Armed with an extended warranty that cost him an extra $300, the Pasadena (Calif.) retiree got on the phone and waited. After sitting on hold for 45 minutes, a technician whom Ulyatt could barely understand came on the line and diagnosed a "software problem." Ulyatt's call, transferred to the software technician, was dropped. Calling back, Ulyatt waited on hold another 45 minutes, asked for the software desk, and waited a half-hour more before hanging up."

"Dell is working to reverse the service slide. John Hamlin, senior vice-president of Dell's U.S. consumer business, says the company is hiring a few thousand additional reps this year and striving to reduce call transfers. Already, he says, hold times have been cut in half from earlier this year, and internal weekly surveys of 5,000 customers show a 35% increase in customer satisfaction from a year ago."

Well now, go figure.  The technician "whom he could barely understand" didn't help much.  When are we going to realize that farming out all our jobs here in the US does have an impact on quality of product and services?  Here's a novel idea.  Why not setup a support center in all of the major geos you serve?  You know, like one for US, Euro, APAC, etc.?  I know, it might cost more for your machine.  And guess what?  People might actually pay a bit more for it and you wouldn't have to charge so much for that weak "extended warranty plan".  "Press one to continue in English".... No thanks, we'll just build a damn machine ourselves.