The Meaning of Good Customer Service

  • Comments: 5
  • Written on: February 28th, 2007

I handled a situation in my Lincoln Service Center last week that is becoming more and more common in the computer repair industry. Every business has its cycles, and in the computer industry companies that offer more service at slightly higher prices are always competing against companies that offer less service and slightly lower prices.

In this particular case, Schrock Innovations shared a customer with a national-chain big box store in town. This customer had purchased her HP Pavilion from the box store, but always choose Schrock Innovations to work on her PC because of our higher levels of customer service.

Our customer’s computer had a “blue screen of death” that read unmountable boot volume. We diagnosed the problem as a bad hard drive, and as we would always do, we ran our stabilization software to move the customer’s data out of the bad sectors on the drive and into safe areas. The drive was still not bootable, but at least we could recover all of her data if she wished.


When we called her to tell her she was going to need a new hard drive, she told us that she had an extended hardware warranty with the box store. We all agreed that she should take advantage of the warranty, so she took her PC back to the box store.

After waiting around for quite a while at the box store, the repair desk shift supervisor there told her that her hard drive tested perfectly fine and that she probably had an adware infection that was causing the problem and it would cost $200 to remove.

Obviously, the customer was concerned. She believed us when we told her the hard drive was going bad, but the box store repair center supervisor (not just a lowly technician) insisted that her hardware was perfectly fine and that her computer had a “Windows problem.”

Before I step up on my soap box, I will sympathize with the box store repair staff… Schrock Innovations runs some pretty heavy duty hard disk repair software, and it masks bad sectors on the hard drive so data can be copied to a new drive without a problem. If you ran the freebie diagnostic software available from the drive manufacturers after we had serviced the drive with our software, it would report that the drive was clean. Evidently, Schrock Innovations runs more advanced software than this multi-billion dollar box store does, so I could see how a technician could make this mistake. Its forgivable, and could happen to any company out there.

However, there is NO MALWARE ANYWHERE that would cause an unmountable boot volume blue screen error message. This was a complete cop-out diagnosis that frustrated and concerned our customer-in-common.

Needless to say, the customer returned to our Lincoln Service Center to make a second go at getting the system repaired. After she showed us the printout of what they did and told us what they had said, it was obvious that someone needed to step in the middle of the problem and resolve it.

I volunteered to call the technicians at the box store and explain what our software does when it scans a hard drive, and how that might have skewed the results of their freeware hard drive scanning utility. I reassured the box store technician that the drive WAS bad and that it did need to be replaced. He agreed and thanked me for calling him.

Almost as an afterthought, I asked the technician if transferring the customer’s data is covered by their extended hardware warranty. he told me it was not. I thanked him for his time and the conversation ended.

I then turned to report to our customer that the box store would replace her hard drive, but would also erase all of her data. I offered to take an image of her hard drive for her at no additional cost so that when her repaired computer was returned to her she could bring it back in to us and have her data restored exactly as it was before the blue screen error.

Sometimes people ask me how we can possibly compete against the box stores, and the answer can be summarized in this story. We know that if we want to succeed and continue to grow, we have to exceed our customers’ expectations whenever possible. So even though our customer will be taking her computer back to the box store to cash in on her extended warranty, I think it would be safe to say that we are going to be her go-to tech guys when push comes to shove in the future.

  1. duane noragon
    duane noragon said on February 28th, 2007 at 11:03 am

    blaze i think you went out off your way to help this poor lady. big box or any computer company hire people who do not know that is going on with most of the products they are trying to help with. your shop has helped me fine when i get stuck on prolems. you just fixed my computer and hp printer. could get hp dictor to so jenifer told me to call them i did and was told mirsoft 7 int did not work hp dictor it would ome or two months before they had patch? I SAID OK and thanked them i went on hp site about a week later and they a patch on there for the problem so it now fixed so keep up the good work you poeple do

  2. Josh the Aspie said on February 28th, 2007 at 8:06 pm

    I’m really glad that you guys have that level of customer service available. A lot of the time if you go to one of the big box stores you just wind up feeling lost there’s so there to see.

    At least the technician there was willing to listen to what your software did, and was willing to work with the customer after they found out about it.

  3. anonymous
    anonymous said on March 1st, 2007 at 1:02 am

    You have to admit, it’s pretty easy to be better than Geek Squad!

  4. Tony Divito
    Tony Divito said on March 1st, 2007 at 9:43 am

    I want to thank you and Thor for putting up with me and getting into the problems I had with my computer. With out your persistence I would still be "out of commission"
    with the computer and internet.

    Thanks again, for your help, and a special thank you for the personal intervention of Thor. It is not to often the head of a company actually takes an interest and gets involved.

  5. The Gopher said on March 5th, 2007 at 9:47 pm

    Now this is why I enjoy taking my comptuer to Schrock Innovations. They know that your computer is an extremely important tool. To have it go out of commission is a pain. ( I would know! ). Thor, Blaze, Jen, and the rest of the crew, keep up the great work! I’m proud to be conected to your business!

What do you think? Join the discussion...

How do I change my avatar?

Go to gravatar.com and upload your preferred avatar.

Subscribe to My RSS Feed

Subscribe Form Click to Subscribe or

      TwitterCounter for @thorschrock

Ed Wunder Loves Schrock's Service

Top Commentators

Schrock Innovations' New Ride

Revolution Wraps Rocks!

Geek Squad Hires Anyone!

Other Recent Videos


We're on the Morning Blend answering your Lincoln Nebraska computer repair questions regarding warranties


Need your computer repaired in Omaha? If you're never visited Schrock Innovations before (1st time client), stop by for a FREE hour of repair

Our Open Adoption

    Kim and I are seeking to adopt another child through Open Adoption. If you know of a birth mother seeking a stable, loving family in Nebraska, please direct her to our website at nebraskaopenadoption.com.

Thor's Sponsors

    Computer Repair Lincoln NE
© Thor Schrock 2009