Hardware Life Tech

Lost in transition

UPS, FedEX, USPS… take note: if you can do a better job keeping track of packages than DHL I will insist that all shipments to me use your services.

I recently ordered three items from Dell computer… a pair of LCD monitors for me and my wife and a docking station for my wife’s laptop.  All three packages were picked up at identical times from Dell by DHL.  Two of the packages are identically-sized, the third very close in size.  All three packages are being shipped to the same location, my home.  Check out the shipping status table below and tell me if you can spot my frustration?

Date Time Activity/comments Location
Monitor 1 – Current status: Delivered
2/21/2005 2:13PM Shipment delivered.   San Jose South, CA
2/21/2005 2:13PM With delivery courier.    
2/21/2005 7:59AM Arrived at DHL facility.   San Jose South, CA
2/18/2005 3:42PM Picked Up by DHL. Shipper’s Door
Monitor 2 – Current status: Processed at Sort Facility.
2/20/2005 11:23AM Processed at Sort Facility.   Wilmington, OH
2/18/2005 3:42PM Picked Up by DHL. Shipper’s Door
Docking station – Current status: In transit.
2/18/2005 3:42PM Picked Up by DHL. Shipper’s Door

Every item was picked up from Dell by DHL at the exact same time on Friday.  Even though the box for the Dock is going to be a similar size to the monitor boxes, the Dock is 5 lbs and the monitors are 26 lbs… let’s give DHL the benefit of the doubt and expect the monitors will be traveling together.  No?  They’re not?  One arrived yesterday… 3 days ahead of schedule.

Okay, let’s give DHL the benefit of the doubt and expect they’ll get the same level of tracking detail.  Oops, sorry.  One package was tracked through a sorting facility in Ohio… the other simply showed up in San Jose with no intermediate stops. 

What about the dock?  It’s been “in transit” since the day it was picked up… no other detail is available… naturally.  Tracking number?  What’s that for?

“Hey Reeves, you got a package early, you should be happy.”

Well, sure, if I didn’t have a job and my wife wasn’t in school we could sit at home all week waiting for the packages to trickle in.  Heck, I’d be happy with a semi-accurate tracking of the packages so I could plan to be home to receive them.  Having no idea when the boxes will arrive is disconcerting.  Receiving the 3 orders over a random number of days is frustrating.  Knowing I ordered a stack of expensive computer equipment and the shipper is sloppy in tracking and handling it is annoying.  Calling DHL to suggest they be more consistent and getting the attitude of “hey, you got your package early, you should be happy” is infuriating.  DHL, that’s one step away from saying “hey, you got your package, you should be happy.”

DHL: From this day forward I’m going to insist all shippers use UPS, FedEX or USPS… and I will pay extra for the privilege of not using your sloppy service.

4 replies on “Lost in transition”

A followup comment: I called Dell to let them know I was not satisfied with DHL’s shipping. They were very appologetic and took down my complaint. I love Dell’s customer service.

I called DHL and gave them the same complaint. They were unappologetic and didn’t take the feedback well.

For both calls I was reasonable and constructive, I didn’t yell, raise my voice or berate the phone rep. I phrased my call to the phone rep as "feeback from a customer" in both cases. Dell did the right thing, they said sorry and took down my comments. DHL treated my like an annoyance.

Reeves, you’re going to love this. I bought my Dell Computer in 2003. After careful research and knowing exactly what I wanted I called Dell and ordered my computer. When the package finally arrived I was excited and ready to dig in. I open the box and it was just the monitor. Hmmmp…"okay, so where the heck is the rest if my stuff". I called Dell and utilized the tracking information stuff they gave me. A total of 6 packages were shipped all the same day. Hmmp…okay, so again I say to myself, "where is the rest of my stuff". Anyway to make a long story short (to late), the rest of my packages arrived all at different times, on different days. The monitor came first, then the CPU, the keyboard/with mouse and mouse pad and all the reinstallation CD’s and books, the battery backup, the speakers and subwoofer, and finally the printer. Whew!! I was exhausted.

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