Wednesday 13 March 2013

Apartment Sweet Apartment- Sofa & Brick Drama: The Conclusion

Several months ago, I wrote about a sofa that I purchased-and LOVED- from The Brick. But The Brick was unable to deliver an undamaged sofa to me and don't even get me started on my entire ordeal with them and their customer service! You can read about the entire situation just prior to my 5th or 6th (I lost count) sofa delivery here.

This is a quick summary, up until November 14, 2012:
  • Bought a sofa I loved in July
  • Have since had 4 damaged sofas sent to me
  • Requested to speak to a manager 8 times before one spoke to me, and when I did was told to "rent a U-Haul and exchange it on my own time."
  • Have had 2 deliveries changed/scheduled without my knowledge
  • Horrible customer service experience
  • The Brick decided they didn't want me to have a sofa that I LOVE
  • I have to pay an additional $200 to replace the damaged sofa I currently have with a sofa I don't like
The summary was written prior to the delivery of yet another sofa. This was the day my dad took a day off work and drove an hour and a half to accept the deliver.

Well, my replacement, replacement, replacement, etc sofa was delivered. My dreams of it being undamaged didn't come true. That's right...The Brick delivered yet another damaged sofa! The Brick doesn't agree that the sofa was damaged, but there wasn't enough material to cover the frame and you could see the staples attaching the material to the frame. Needless to say, my dad didn't accept the delivery. 

On Monday, November 19, The Brick called me and left a message wanting to schedule another delivery. I was at a work function and unable to take the call. I had previously decided that I did not want replacement reselect delivery. Instead, I wanted to discuss options for my original sofa, which in September and October had been 50% refund to keep the existing sofa, another delivery or a reselect.

When I returned the call the next day, I spoke to person 1, person 2 and finally Cindy (from The Brick store in Kitchener, Ontario!). When I explained to Cindy why I was calling and that I didn't want another delivery for the reselect, but a refund for it, and to discuss options for my original sofa, she told me she couldn't help me when I was "on a rampage".

I pointed out to Cindy from The Brick in Kitchener, that I was not on a rampage and if I was, I think it would be justifiable and that most people would have hit "rampage" 2 months and 4 deliveries ago. She proceeded to tell me that she was "obviously not good enough to help" me and then she hung up on me!

Of course I called back and Cindy answered the phone. I asked to speak to a manager. I believe it was manager Jerry from The Brick in Kitchener. I explained to him what Cindy had said and that she hung up on me. I also went on to talk about the real reason I was calling. Guess what manager Jerry did? He also hung up on me!

Clearly The Brick in Kitchener is a flagship store of customer service.

So, I turned to Twitter and announced that both Cindy and manager Jerry had hung up on me.

Shortly after my Tweet, I received a phone call from Danielle who works at The Bricks head office in Edmonton. Danielle informed me that The Brick would no longer be delivering to me because they lose money- which is funny because this whole thing started with The Brick calling to schedule a delivery!

On top of that, The Brick's earlier offer of 50% to keep my damaged sofa, which would have been $300 plus half of the tax, was no longer an option. The offer was now $100. I was told they had to lower the price to recoup some of their costs for all of their deliveries.

Which, really wasn't fair or even my problem.

If The Brick just delivered an undamaged sofa- and they had 5 or 6 tries on this- they wouldn't have lost any money or at least not as much. I don't think it's my responsibility to reimburse them for something that was their mistake. Of course, they disagreed.

When I asked them if they would reimburse me for the money I lost- time I had to take off of work, time my dad had to take off of work, my dad's mileage to accept the deliveries, my mileage to drive half an hour to their store several times and the hours upon hours upon hours I spent on the phone with them- they said no, that wasn't their concern.

Double standard anyone???

Not to mention I lost money because of them and they lost money because of themselves. No lost money because of me. But that's neither here nor there.

On top of that, since that 50% offer, I had several deliveries, drove to their store twice, etc. Basically, I had been put through more headache and trouble since that offer. The offer should have gone up, not down.

Anyway...after work I drove the half hour to the store in Kitchener. No one wanted to deal with me over the phone, so I felt I had to do this in person. I spoke loudly about being hung up on twice and having so many damaged deliveries before a manager, who was not Jerry, was brought out to speak with me.

We started off with my reselect. I told them I wanted the additionally money I paid refunded in full because I did not have in my possession that damaged sofa and I did not want another one delivered to me. After some discussion, they agreed to give me my money back.

Next up was my original sofa. I explained everything I had gone through since July with this sofa- including being hung up on by two The Brick in Kitchener employees earlier that day.

Do you know what I was told? And if you think this story couldn't get worse...

I was told I was not a priority.

The Brick didn't have time to examine the products they deliver to me because they have so many deliveries. I was told I was not their only customer so they don't have time to deal with me and my damaged sofa. I asked when a customer becomes a priority and wasn't really given an answer. In case you are wondering, purchasing 5 items and having 5 damaged sofas delivered to you does not make you a priority.

I was also told that they don't appreciate me going to Twitter, Facebook and my blog to tell everyone about my experience with The Brick. As they pointed out to me, when a customer is difficult, they don't Tweet about them. I pointed out it wasn't exactly the same thing and if they REALLY wanted to, they could tweet about their customers.

The manager then made it clear they just wanted me to go away. They don't want to deal with my any more. See The Conclusion (end of post) for more on this. 

I also pointed out that it wasn't until I turned to social media that The Brick started paying attention to me, returning my calls, etc. I also pointed out that I waited a month and a half, several deliveries and several unreturned messages to managers before going to social media- giving them PLENTY of time to fix the situation. I also mentioned to the manager that I would Tweet (done), Facebook (done) and blog (this post) about the end result- giving The Brick the opportunity to fix the situation and make things right.

Knowing this, did The Brick take the opportunity? What did they do to fix the situation? This was their opportunity to "redeem" themselves to my social media following and whoever else I told about my experience or would come across my online presence.

Before I get to the conclusion, a couple of days after my dad (who had paid for the original sofa) accepted their offer, The Brick- who had said they would not delivery to me again- called to confirm a delivery for my reselect replacement for that Friday! Apparently, this had been scheduled prior to me being hung up on and it was scheduled without my knowledge or consent. Yes, I did cancel this. But I also thought The Brick was no longer delivering to me...?

Anyway, so, what did The Brick do to fix the situation knowing I would report about it on social media?

The Conclusion:

When it came to customer service and the way I was treated, including being hung up on twice, all they did was say they would speak to Cindy. I never received an apology from Cindy. Nor did I ever receive an apology from The Brick in Kitchener for Cindy's behaviour and/or everything they put me through or any offer to make up for my troubles. I did place a phone call to Charles in the Toronto office (who I had previously spoken to) and we discussed my customer service experience. He offered a verbal apology and said he would look into it. I never heard from him again.

For my damaged sofa, which I'm sitting on as I type this, they offered money back, which was well below the 50% offer. As stated above, The Brick in Kitchener just wanted me to go away and not talk about them on social media anymore. However, the amount they refunded on the sofa wasn't enough to be "hush money". Plus, I did feel the need to let everyone know the end result.

I was also told that in accepting this refund, my warranty is null and void and I can not go back to The Brick for any issues related to my sofa.

Months after all of this, I STILL get asked about my experience, what happened and what the end result was. I share my story with anyone who asks.

I'm happy that this whole ordeal is over- it only took 5-6 months, which I think is unacceptable. I settled for the final outcome, which is not the same as being happy. I settled because I was done dealing with The Brick and I was done being treated horrible by The Brick. I am absolutely disgusted with the way I was treated, disgusted that they sent me so many damaged products and disgusted with their lack of professionalism. Never mind that there was no real solution and at the end of the day, I still have the first, damaged sofa but have lost money for all the time I had to take off of work, the time I spent on the phone, the time and money spent on driving to their store.

I'm most disgusted by the fact that their customers mean nothing to The Brick. 

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

1 comment:

  1. I'm so sorry you had such a horrid experience! That is just awful.

    The Hartungs Blog