If you have a retail system such as HP take the time to make the restore DVD and backup data. This will save you time and a trip to a repair shop.
When restoring or for new out of the box PC, look over the software that came with this PC. See what you want to keep and uninstall the rest to make more room on the hard drive. Most people leave the demo software and other software they will never use on the system which may cause problems later down the road.
Run Windows updates ASAP and either run auto updates or check for updates at least the second Wednesday of ever month.
Defrag the system at least once a month (Depending how much the system is used you may want to defrag more)
Tips on dealing with after purchase customer service/tech support from box PC companies (Dell, HP, etc…).
Many problems they can solve with you on the phone quite quickly, other times its a very long process. Assuming its the long process here are some guidelines to follow.
1. Know what you’re going to say. Don’t ad lib it, it doesn’t work. You may have to think fast, but you need to know the course of the conversation and were your limits are on what you’re willing to do.
2. Decide how much work you want to do:
The techs job is to get the computer fixed without having it sent back to their company. They are adamant about having you do the work. This can be very time consuming. If you don’t want to do the work or have done enough and don’t want to do more, try the following: If you have an extended warranty or are with-in the standard warranty, be firm but polite and say you are within your warranty period and you are not going to do the work. A good line is, “I am not going to do that, I am not going to spend my time (or anymore time) fixing an issue with your equipment. What is going to happen is you are going to send me a pre-paid mailer and I”m going to send this back and its going to be fixed.” If they give you further difficulty, ask to speak to a manager.
*******BE POLITE, these people are doing their jobs, and they listen to alot of people take out their frustration on them.*****
3. If you aren’t satisifed with tech support, escalate the issue:
You can also state that with these problems, you are not confident in the product and if the issue isn’t resolved by [insert name here] you would like to return the defective product and receive a full refund. This is an indication to the tech that they will not be able to help you, and will plant the seed to hand you off to a CAM.
Typically the tech support people can’t do anything but help you with issues over the phone and maybe send you a prepaid mailer. In my experience, most of them are overseas as well.
If you think you need a replacement, likely these people can’t help you. You need to speak with a customer account manager. Typically CAMs are in the US, and are authorized to give you a replacement system. If you ask the tech about returning the item for a refund or replacement, they will do everything they can to avoid it, and in some cases this includes lies. They may say they aren’t authorized to return/replace/etc… Simply state, you understand they have limits on what they do, however you are sure there is someone in the company that can authorize the return and you’d like to speak to that person. If they don’t give it to you ask for their supervisor, they will likely give it to you so they can move on and deal with someone else.
4. Speaking to the CAM:
This is the person that can get you a replacement or refund. They will prefer the replacement. BE POLITE and BE PATIENT! They will do what they can but they need time and depending on the situation, possibly a higher level authorization. You WANT the CAM on your side.
Speak to them about your difficulties and state that you heard they had good customer service and up to this point, you have not been satisfied. Explain that you are not mad at them, but are upset with the situation. BE POLITE! State you are looking for a refund or a replacement and usually they will work with you
On a personal note, I helped a friend with an HP laptop issue. After torture getting through tech support, I got a CAM that wasn’t the greatest, I got lucky and caught her out of the office prior to her doing any real work on my account and I convince the woman I was speaking to take the case over. Tech support was a pain to deal, finally i had to tell them to send me a box and they would issue me a refund or send me a new laptop. She said she couldn’t authorize that, I said I needed her help in finding the person that could. I got the CAM phone number at that point.
End result: He paid $978 for a laptop, it was replaced at not cost to him with a $2800 laptop. And I mean zero cost.
None of it would have been possible, if it weren’t for a few things:
1. HP has a customer service department that is empowered to help you, all you have to do is get them on your side. At the end of my dealings with them on the laptop, the CAM was finding me a laptop and she kept saying “oh wait, here’s a better one”.
2. I was polite
3. I was patient
4. Strong communication skills that were practiced prior to the phone calls
5. No matter what, I was never rude to the CAM. There were delays, and issues that needed to be taken care of on HPs side, and I was patient through all of it and told the CAM i understood and I appreciated her all of her effort in helping me.
Just a note, there were serious issues with the laptop, it had multiple defective components from the first day he opened it.
A slight disclaimer, I am very good at negotiating and educated in computer sciences and was able to use both to my friends advantage when dealing with both tech support and the CAM. Please be sure you know what you’re talking about when you speak to a tech or customer service, you will get a lot farther.