Currys PC World – Customer Experience Review


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Many congratulations to Currys PC World for being the first to feature in my new series of ‘customer experience reviews’ that will become a staple on my blog going forward. As regular readers of my blog are all too aware, I often use real life stories to bring the subject of customer experience to life – so what better way to do this than to produce a critical, independent review of the organisations I interact with.

The reviews will follow a standard format, looking at 5 experience ‘areas’. I will be scoring each ‘area’ on a scale from 1 to 10, enabling each organisation I review to achieve a total of 50 points. For every ten points scored, I will award a star – get 50 points, and you will be awarded 5 stars – easy!!

The review principle is exactly the same as a review conducted by a restaurant critic – it is my opinion – whether you agree or disagree is completely up to you! I will be applying my specialist critique and using my considerable experience in making my judgement!! So let’s get going – what did I think of Currys PC World?

Date Review Conducted 6th April 2014
Store Visited Chester, Sealand Road and Online
CX Review Total Score 30/50
Stars Awarded 3/5

I am unfortunate to be writing this review on a laptop that has seen better days. Continually mocked by my colleagues and peers, it has become mildly embarrassing to remove it from my bag in public! The Golding family is not blessed in the laptop department – Naomi has been working on a different laptop without an operable letter ‘e’ for the last twelve months. On Sunday we decided enough is enough – we needed to purchase not one, but two new laptops!!

Our ‘customer journey’ started with us having the need to make a purchase. The next stage was for us to decide where to go to make that purchase. Naomi’s parents recently bought a new laptop from John Lewis. Interestingly, they were not over awed by the experience and felt that Currys PC World had greater choice. No other retailers were mentioned – the desire to want to see, feel and touch the technology was paramount, and these two were foremost in our minds. The power of feedback and recommendation genuinely has an effect on the decision making process – we decided to visit Currys PC World and not John Lewis.

Accessibility – CX Review Score 8/10

Living in Chester, we have very easy access to Currys PC World. Located on a retail park in Sealand Road, the store is very easy to find, and ample parking is available. The store is located near supermarkets and restaurants, so you can combine your visit with other activities – something we did ourselves on Sunday. The website is easy enough to find on a laptop or mobile, and the site is mobile enabled. All in all, Currys PC World scores pretty well on the subject of accessibility.

Range/Choice – CX Review Score 8/10

Currys PC World score well on range and choice. On entering the cavernous store, it was pretty easy to locate the computing ‘department’. Banks of tables were laid out with all sorts of device on show – from touchscreen laptops, to tablets to multi functional things where the screen detaches from the keyboard. It is great to be able to see, feel and touch the product – one of the things that is important to me is to get a sense of the weight and size of the machine. There was a good range of different manufacturers, and only a couple of displays were empty. If nothing else, I would strongly recommend visiting a Currys PC World to ‘check out’ what you might want to buy – whether or not you end up buying it from them is another matter.

People – CX Review Score 3/10

Sadly, this is where our experience started to go wrong. Purchasing one laptop (let alone two) is not a regular occurrence. Most people will require help and assistance in making the decision as to what might be right for them. Despite the fact the store was not very busy (even on a Sunday), there were only a handful of staff visible. We were pleased that eventually a lady approached us and asked if we required help. This would have been agreeable…..if the lady were actually capable of fulfilling that request. When you are enquiring about a technical purchase, it is a basic necessity for the staff serving you to have knowledge of the technology you are interested in. This lady regrettably did not. Whilst she was pleasant, she could not answer a single question posed to her, and was even not open to going to find out. We ended up trying to research the answers to questions on our smartphones whilst she stood watching us. Eventually she disappeared to ‘serve’ another customer – I guess she got bored with the Golding’s. This lady is not the only cause of the low score for people. I did ask another member a staff a technical question about a particular laptop. Whilst not bothering to look up from what he was doing, his response was negative and dismissive – not in the slightest bit helpful. This store needs to focus on its people – the customer experience is being detrimentally affected by them.

Value – CX Review Score 6/10

On the value front, we were quite impressed by Currys PC World. With products to suit all sizes of pocket, they certainly had the type of product we would be interested in buying. However, when making a purchase of this nature, we always look online to see if we can get a better deal. We did find a couple of better value products with other retailers. However, in the main, Currys PC World are pretty well priced. The reason why I have awarded a 6 for value, is that today (one day later) I have noticed that they are running a Big Easter deal price matching offer – no one in the store had the courtesy to mention this. I did not notice if the offer was advertised in the store. I feel slightly duped – I might have purchased something that I could have found cheaper elsewhere and might never have known – that I do not perceive to be great value.

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How did it make me feel? CX Review Score 5/10

So how did I feel at the end of the experience. Well with the little assistance offered by the unknowledgeable and slightly ignorant staff, I certainly did not feel great. I did not feel awful either though. I had achieved part of what I wanted – I had been able to see a variety of laptops that will help us to make a purchase. The key is that it will help me to make my purchase elsewhere. The majority of the experience is good – yet the most important element provided by people is very poor. All in all, this leads me to give Currys PC World a score of 5 on the ‘feelings’ front – very middle of the road. Just remember, we tend to remember the very good or the very bad experiences – this one will very shortly be forgotten altogether (once I have finished writing this review).

Would I use them again? No

So the big decision – will I return to Currys PC World? My answer is slightly confusing – because I would not hesitate to go there again……to have a look. But based on my experience yesterday, I will not be handing over my hard earned cash to an organisation whose people do not know what they are doing, or do not care enough to provide customers with the help they really need. My experience tells me that whilst the organisation has largely got its product offer right, it MUST start to invest in its people – they need to understand and empathise with the customers that cross the threshold – whether that be online, in store or both.

Currys PC World Response – Received 7th April 2014

“Having read the review, I am pleased to see that we have scored highly in a couple of areas, but not so good int the main areas. This is certainly food for thought and we will be certainly be passing this back to the store and area manager as feedback. We thank you for taking the time and trouble for highlighting the strengths and weakness of the store.”

What do you think of Currys PC World? Does my experience reflect your own? Do you think I am being overly critical? Your views are as important as mine, and would be gratefully received.

 

28 thoughts on “Currys PC World – Customer Experience Review

  1. tonight I visited a Curry’s PC World at Telford Forge Retail Park Colliers way Telford and the assistant was so friendly her name was Georgia I am waiting for a fridge to be repaired but could not wait 48 hours for a fridge to be repaired ,she apologised and checked the product I was looking for was in stock it was not but she offered me an alternative product which I purchased and left the store happy that I had a fridge a least to tide me over until the one I had at home was going to be repaired thank you Georgia you made my day some people need to get a life do you know everything about everything if you do you are smarter than anyone anyone has ever met and probably never will

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    • I am delighted you had such a positive experience Trevor. I would strongly recommend you Tweet Currys PC World to let them know about Georgia’s actions – from the sounds of it, she very much deserves recognition.

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  2. I bought a laptop from pc world last November. At barely six months old, the case has split. The customer service you received is just the tip of the iceberg – if something goes wrong, Pc world go out of their way to.be difficult. 16 days after returning it to the store, I have no laptop, no refund, no replacement, and no idea when it will be resolved. Pc world are denying all responsibility. I’ve been told to phone the manufacturer myself. The staff are rude.and unhelpful and their response to everything is ‘there’s nothing I can do
    .’ Awful, awful company.

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  3. Quote the Sale of Goods Act. This is a faulty item, developing faults prior to 6 months and therefore you are legally entitled to a full refund. Request this and say you will go to the Small Claims Court if they do not refund. If they still don’t (but I think you will find that they will as hearing so often from people that Currys don’t refund until the Law is quoted) then simply take them to court because you will win. You do not have to accept a repair.

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    • Many thanks for providing your considerable expertise Helen.

      Jane – Helen is one of the UKs experts in customer complaints – hopefully her advice will be of use to you.

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  4. I have found that the PC World staff are helpful until there is a problem. Like Jane my laptop is faulty, the internet only working when it feels like it, and even then slowly…not exactly ” fit for it’s purpose” as my work laptop. I tried to explain this to the staff at PC World who bamboozled me with IT jargon and told me there was nothing wrong with it and then proceeded to shout at me in a very busy shop. I had already asked an IT professional to look at who confirmed to me that it is faulty.

    Today I have spent all day trying to fix the issue firstly via @CurrysPCWorld twitter, then via email (4 hours response time). I have not been able to work at all.

    Did I mention that my laptop is 7 weeks old!!!!! PC World emailed me a fix that I believe Mark Zuckerberg himself would have struggled with. No mention of my requested refund.

    I have asked them again about my refund and if I do not get a response I will be taking Helen’s advice and taking them to the Small Claims Court.

    What a stressful, horrible experience with PC World when I was so excited to get my brand new laptop.

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    • Many thanks for sharing your story Jasmine. Like many others, your treatment is just not acceptable. The key question is how long can the business survive treating customers like this? We can only hope that in time they change their behaviours – I will not hold my breath though.

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      • Thank you Ian. I am so frustrated with PC World as this is not only costing me time and effort to solve this but also as a small business owner it is damaging to my business. This morning again they have said that they will not refund my money as it is after the 28 days. I quoted the law, as Helen said, but they are refusing to budge.

        I agree with you about not holding my breath, it is a pity because the salespeople were lovely when I was buying the laptop. It is obviously PC World’s bad customer service policy that is causing them to be so unreasonable.

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  5. Bought a Printer and Symentec Anti Virus in June 14 from P.C World in Chester. I told the Sales Assistant that my computer was a 2003 model but the sale went ahead and he never informed me that my P.C would need updating to accept the new printer.

    After taking it home, I tried to load the disc with the printer onto my P.C and it kept rejecting it.
    I took the printer back to P.C World Chester and asked for a refund and I also handed them back the Symentec which I had not used.

    I asked for a refund which I was entitled to under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 Amended Version.

    I was passed on by the Sales Assistant to a person whom was supposed to be the Manager, (I recently found out he was not the Store Manager but could have been a Floor Manager for just the P.C World division of Currys Chester.). I tried to discuss the matter with him but before I could finish my first sentence he passed me to another person whom was very arrogant and kept repeating himself that he would not refund as I had opened the box for the printer. When I told him the printer had been mis sold to me, he said I should have read the information on the box top.
    I asked for the Symentec to be returned to me but he kept on saying I have got it.

    Tried to explain that I would need to open the box in order to use the printer but he just would not have it. He said if the printer had been left unopened he would refund me if it was within 21 days of purchase.

    His attitude was very unprofessional as he conducted this conversation within earshot of a group of customers.

    Eventually I gave up trying to communicate with this character and went home and sent the first of three letters to Customer Service Dept, the first letter being sent 20th June, the second one on 25th July.

    Customer Services never replied and I finally booked a session with a Legal Advisor via Citizens Advice Service, this was based on information from Trading Standards Website and I had already reported P.C World , Chester to them

    She said that I need to send a letter to Customer Services and also one to the store giving them a deadline which if not adhered to would have included commencing proceedings against Currys/P.C World.

    The next thing “Hey Presto”, I was contacted by the Store Manager from P.C World, Chester apologising for the inappropriate attitude of the staff member and I was offered a refund which I did take in exchange for returning the printer.

    Issues identified were staff attitude when dealing with customers, staff lacking knowledge of trading standards legislation, poor communication between staff and the Floor Manager not taking time to handle a complaint and delegating it to a member of the sales staff.

    Secondly, Currys and P.C World Customer Services Dept had not responded to the letters I had sent, two having been sent by Recorded Delivery and it took almost nine weeks to get a resolution to the matter and this was only when legal action was about to be taken.

    Would I shop again at P.C world –NO.
    Would I recommend the company to a friend–NO.

    If any of you have difficulties with Currys and P.C World, Chester or any other store in the chain, get some legal advice and when you send letters, post them to Customer Services and also to the Store involved by Recorded Delivery. Dont hold your breath and trying to get through to the Store via Customer Services, it was harder than trying to contact aliens.

    Dave

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    • Many thanks for sharing your story Dave. I am so sorry you have suffered in the same way as many others. In the case of this particular organisation, voting with our feet is the only sensible option!

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  6. Thanks for your reply Ian.

    Your comments are spot on . Voting with our feet is exactly the answer.

    I am hoping that Currys/P.C World will write to me and apologise, but all I have had is an apology from the Store Manager via message left on my mobile .

    He asked me to bring the goods back for refund and said the Customer Advisor should have dealt with it on the day I brought the items back. He added he would give me another call which I am still awaiting.

    There was no mention of why Customer Services had not replied to the letters I sent them over a period of almost nine weeks and no offer of discretionary compensation.

    It appears that this organisation only respond when legal action is about to be taken .

    Dave

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  7. I bought a fridge freezer from currys.it was faulty from the start & an engineer wrote it off. I wanted to upgrade to a better more reliable brand which they said I could.. It was £50 more than what I’d paid for the 1st fridge freezer.. On trying to do this I was told I could only swap it for same price model or up to £25 more, nothing was suitable so they said I’d have to have it collected & wait for it to get back to the depot before a refund would be issued so I could buy what I wanted which would mean being without a fridge freezer for over a week possibly close to 2 weeks (counting working days only) couple of days for refund to be processed…couple more days for money to go back into bank…few more days(working ones) to wait for delivery of new fridge freezer. Other alternative was to spend a further £300 for another fridge freezer & then wait for refund ! Do they think people are made of money ? I needed a refund to pay for another fridge freezer as I had no money & certainly not £300 ! All I wanted was a swap & to pay the extra £50 ! But no ! Customer service at currys when you have a problem is non existent but they are more than happy to take your money off you !
    They will never get another penny off me for anything ever again !
    I’m an unemployed career with children & my poor parents had to buy me a fridge freezer from AO.com so I wasn’t without one until I get a refund !

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  8. hi I am having on going issues due to a faulty key on my lap top … 6 months after original approach and faithful promise of a repair of the lap top it is now out of warranty .. 3 managers promised the problem would be fixed … the most recent a week ago and then a follow up call to chase had the hours of phone calls the recent staff member concerned flip flopping so after yet another 30 minute phone call to customer service I still awaiting to see if they will honour the price of the key. Basically in the last 5 months or so I have been promised help and a solution and then a complete turn around. The staff in the Exeter Branch were lovely when I bought the item as a business customer but since purchase I have been told so many conflicting things that do not have confidence in them as a company and feel have been repeatedly lied to and fobbed off.
    sorry don’t think i would use again .. value wise pretty good, unless something goes wrong and then pretty much useless

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    • Hi Yesterday was offered a £10 goodwill payment .. but have to email the chase team as the chap that said this was possible needs them to confirm it! have replied to them asked for confirmation and explanation of what has happened yesterday … i will see if they reply .. thanks for the link i think i will head for the CEO before I go to Watchdog or trading standards.

      Thanks

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      • Hi there
        PC World have given me a £50 goodwill payment to over phone calls etc. But the real amazing hero is Acer. They have been wonderful and are taking my computer in to replace the keyboard and do a full check and overhaul on it.
        So thank you and the message is to persist politely and then you will get your problems sorted

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  9. Be warned either go to a younger team member or a manager but the older the employee the ruder they are.Hedge end being a prime example where certain members of staff will actually walk off and serve someone else if they are spending more mobey and then come back to you when they have finished also not telling you complete story or providing you with accurate time scale. Hedge end really is a bad store

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  10. Currys are appalling.
    NEVER SHOP THERE.
    Their after sales service is practically non existent.
    They are rude.
    I bought a tv there, a very expensive one and it had a 14 inch scratch on the base stand.
    They were not interested.
    Go to Currys to see the products
    then note the model and price
    then go to Tesco to buy click & collect.

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  11. In my experience Currys PC World are a sales machine but lack any follow up customer service. I purchased a Samsung laptop 10.5 months ago from Brentford, the sales person included a McAffee product free (by reducing the price of the laptop and adding in the McAffee product) despite me saying I did not want it or need it. Presumably the sales person was on an incentive scheme.

    10.5 months on, the single hinge at the back of the laptop has separated totally from the screen exposing the electronics. There has been no damage to the machine and there is no breakage, just separation of the hinge. I took it into CPCW in Ealing 3 weeks ago, they took photographs and agreed it had no damage other than the hinge. They refused to do anything and having looked into it, emailed me several days later to tell Samsung said it was not covered under their warranty and I had to pay £90 for a company named by Samsung to assess it and produce a technical report to prove whether it was my fault or a design fault. I telephoned CPCW centrally to say that under SOGA my contract was with them not Samsung and they should help me. A techical support person raised a case and said I would hear back in a day or two. A week later nothing so I called again, this time a customer service agent said the store should have taken in to have it looked at by CPCW technical team. During both calls I offered photographic and video evidence for them to review however they wouId not take this. I went back to the store and saw the same person who was again unhelpful. I insisted he called central support with the call reference number from my last call. After this he said I had to pay £50 to have CPCW assess it. I have paid and today the laptop was taken by the store. They said 5 days until I hear back. Now I have to wait. I have a start up business of my own and rely on portable computing which I will not have had for a month. I requested a loan machine and was told no.

    The whole process has involved me chasing, being told different things by the store, the technical team and customer services. All this with a 10.5 month old product. I am exasperated with CPWQ who seem to lack any care about the customer at all. Finally the machine has gone to be assessed. This could have been resolved so much more quickly and easily, however all I have now is a terrible experience to stop me ever wanting to spend money there again.

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  12. WE bought a Samsung Tab Pro tablet last August and took out a 5 year care plan as we were told that if any thing went wrong we would get a replacement while it was being repaired. So we agreed and paid £89 for this. Two weeks ago I found that the battery life was about three hours and it took a day to recharge. I took it to pcworld at Barnstaple. While there they assistant logged on to their system and informed me that the care plan had been cancelled by me. I assured them that I had not cancelled but was told that the system showed that I had . I had the receipt of the sale with me and asked them to show me proof that I had cancelled it. There only reply was to offer me a phone number for me to sort it out myself. They then took it in for repair under the normal 1 year guarantee , but that would mean that if the repair took more that 14 days I would not be eligible for a new tablet even though under the care plan I would have been, also I would not qualify for a temporary replacement while it was away anyway as the care plan only did this for televisions and computers.

    When I arrived home I phoned Knowhow who had issued the care plan for the tablet and explained the situation, they checked and informed me that there had been a mistake on the original documentation which the sales assistant had filled in so he had cancelled that document and issued a new care plan. Had the staff at pc world taken the trouble to either check the system or phone them it would have been sorted out there and then.

    I was appalled at the totally unhelpful attitude of the staff who seamed to believe it is up to the customer to sort out any problems, rather than take the time to give good customer service finding it easier to fob them off and expect them to sort it.

    While this was going on there was another customer having similar problems but I didn’t have the time to get her name so it is obvious that this is normal for this shop.

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  13. I think you really need to redefine your idea of what “accessibility” is.

    as a part-time wheelchair user my idea of accessibility (and this will be shared by anyone with mobility problems / disability) is – can I get into the store with my wheelchair (or crutches, depending on how well I’m feeling on the day), is there room to manoeuvre a wheelchair in the store, are there any steps, a lift, etc etc.

    whereas your idea of accessibility is whether it has an easy road to get to it and if it’s near other shops.
    kind of makes the rest of your review a bit pointless if you can’t get this simple concept right.

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    • Many thanks for taking the time to respond to this review. As I have said to many readers of my reviews, the format is based entirely on my definition of what makes a great customer experience. There is absolutely no obligation for any reader to agree with my perspective – either the definitions of the conclusions! You are absolutely right in stating that accessibility should incorporate access for customers with mobility problems – I will ensure I factor that perspective into my analysis in future. However, for the majority of consumers, this is just one of many elements that comprise my definition of accessibility.

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  14. Had a visit to curry pc world today. First time I’ve ever been to pc world and came away happy and confident. Been using Harrogate for last few years. Not helpful at all.. was passing york Clifton Moor today so called in. If anybody wants to feel welcome and spoken to in plain English. Then see the member of staff called Ben !!!!!!! Couldn’t be more helpful. In my opinion. He should be a manager to restore faith back in pc world to customers.

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    • Many thanks for sharing your experience Jenny – it is very much appreciated – there is hope for Currys PC World after all!! Please do make sure you share your feedback about Ben with them on Twitter and Facebook so he gets the recognition he deserves.

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  15. you should be closed down u should be ashamed but u are to greedy to take notice of peoples comments.myhp laptop is usless 3monthes old i give up with phone calls you done nothing for me iam disabled live on my own and you sit back and ask me for more money if i was not disabled you would not get away with this i will not say what id do but i will make sure i tell everyone on twitter /facebook and every were poss .MONEY GRABBING BASTA///

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