Direct PC supplier Opus Technology has acted to deal with criticism that its customer service and technical support activities are below par.
The Surrey-based tier three company, together with its consumer-oriented sister company Tiny Computers, has been the subject of a number of letters from PC Week readers (see 25 February, 18 March, 15 & 22 April issues), complaining of long delays answering calls and dealing with problems.
Late last month, in a statement dated 23 April and headed "Opus and Tiny expand customer service", the companies said they were addressing the problems, but claimed the initiative was unrelated to PC Week's readers' letters.
An Opus spokeswoman said the company was doubling the number of people it employs in customer service activities to 80, including the recruitment of 10 extra technical support personnel.
It has also spent #100,000 on an Automated Call Distribution system, which it hopes will cut the average time it takes to answer calls to its technical support lines from 10 minutes to six.
The company also provided PC Week with a copy of the top 10 issues its support staff deal with. Prominent on the list are problems related to Microsoft's Windows 95 desktop operating system, including corrupt registry and general enquiries about the package. The Opus spokeswoman said Microsoft had been made aware of the problems, but "wasn't interested in what we had to say".
She added that the volume of calls Opus and Tiny received had peaked at 1,300 a day shortly after Christmas, and stabilised at around that figure since then. Other initiatives, including a "Rescue Me" disk and new manuals, would be available in the next few months.
Separately, Opus has a Pentium II-based machine ready to coincide with this week's launch of Intel's fastest processor, and a mid-range box running AMD's K6 chip will debut in June.
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