Magazine article Supervisory Management

Office Equipment Guarantees: Which Is Best?

Magazine article Supervisory Management

Office Equipment Guarantees: Which Is Best?

Article excerpt

Office product companies are working hard to overcome customer purchasing hesitations by offering comprehensive guarantee programs. But prospective buyers must still be careful; choosing the best guarantee can be difficult. To help, here are some guidelines for evaluating office equipment guarantees.

Who Determines Satisfaction?

For instance, find out if satisfaction with the product--even extending to possible equipment replacement--is a customer or manufacturer decision. Customers also should determine whether replacement equipment will be identical or comparable to the equipment they purchased originally.

Guarantees that do not allow customers to decide for themselves if they are satisfied do not truly guarantee satisfaction. Therefore, it is beneficial to inquire about methods for approval if equipment needs to be replaced. Does the office product guarantee make customers who decide to replace equipment deal with frustrating approval systems?

The ultimate decision about equipment replacement should be a customer decision. Today, many companies in the industry understand the importance of this fundamental principle, and are creating guarantee programs that embody it. Xerox Corporation, for example, is helping customers avoid inconvenient and time-consuming approval processes in determining satisfaction.

The company's Total Satisfaction Guarantee states that customers with equipment maintained under a Xerox service contract or warranty, or a contract from an Authorized Xerox Service Dealer, decide for themselves whether that equipment is performing to their satisfaction. If not, the customer is entitled to an identical or comparable replacement unit.

Uncovering What's Covered

Besides discovering whether customer satisfaction is a customer or manufacturer decision, careful consideration should be given to the products or product parts covered by a guarantee, as well as the length of the coverage.

Some companies may only offer guarantees for specific types of equipment, while others cover only selected components, such as a copier's photoreceptor. It may be wise to opt for the security of a comprehensive guarantee, which covers all office equipment, including copiers, duplicators, printers, facsimile machines, and typewriters.

Working extensively with one vendor may also offer benefits--to name two: simplifying the purchasing and billing processes and making service coverage more convenient and efficient.

What's the Catch?

Whether any restrictions are included in the guarantee, such as copier volume or client location, is another important factor to consider. …

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