A Fleeting Moment Of Fame...
I read this from Instapundit, and it reminded me of the piece I present below. Part of my job, working in tech support at a state govenrment organization, was to write procedures for the Procedures Manual. You know, so when they let me go, my replacement will be able to get up to speed doing my job? Yeah, like that.
Anyway, I wrote the following, and my boss liked it so much, he forwarded it to Dell. Michael Dell read it, and liked it so much, that he turned it into a poster, which I saw several times in TV advertisements involving Dell techs. You can see it on the wall behind them. And no, I never saw a nickle from Dell.
So, without further ado, I present you with:
Dell RMA Procedure
Make sure the item is broken. Break it if necessary.
Run the applicable Dell Diagnostic CD
1. You will have to allow the CD to install an applet on the machine to be tested
2. You MUST do this testing to get the correct message to give Dell to prove you used their diagnostics, otherwise they won't believe you.
3. They STILL won't believe you if you are RMA'ing a monitor. They will want you to have it hooked up to a PC set at 1024x768, 75 Mhz, and ask you dumb questions like "is there a large magnet near the monitor?" or "do you have fluorescent lights?" (name one office in America that doesn't have fluorescent lights).
3. Whether computer or monitor, you will need to have the PC's Service Tag #, the Serial #, the PC's Express Service Code #, and the type of PC/Monitor it is.
When you are satisfied that: a) the item is defective, b) you can convince Dell that the item is defective, and c) you have all of the documentation and the item in front of you, it is...
TIME TO CALL DELL at 1-800-234-1490, where you will pass through the Seven Rings of Voice-Mail Hell, making careful selections, ere you have START OVER. You will finally come to the GateKeeper. It is this person's sworn duty to make you keep their broken junk, but if you persevere, you will finally be given the coveted "Reference Number", and a date of delivery. DO NOT forget to sprinkle The Magic Name of (My Boss) here and there throughout your conversation.....this name has power over the GateKeeper, but only after you have passed the worthiness test (Service Tag #, Express Service Code #, and Serial #)
The replacement will come within days with paperwork and instructions for you on how to re-pack the device in the new box (you haven't destroyed the box or the styrofoam in your excitement to get to the new device, have you? Pity.) Place Dell's stickers and labels on the new box where instructed, pack it nice, with lots of tape to annoy the GateKeeper, or one of their minions, and call the carrier that Dell has chosen to spirit away their dreck. I have used both Airborne Express and UPS. Set it out front in the DSD receptionist's way, instruct everyone in the building who may ever be working the desk that day, or giving someone a break at some point, that this is "your package" and that a "nice man" will be coming to take it away to a better place, so let the "nice man" in to get access to the package, please?
If there is an untoward delay, or you are just nervous, call 1-866-446-3355 to check on the Service Status. Have the Reference # in front of you, as well as all of the other numbers.....you may have to prove you exist yet again....it's okay to throw around The Magic Name liberally now, and to suggest darkly that The Master is growing displeased.