July/August  2002

The Secret Shopper

A Possible Solution
Jobber Gives Answers to Wood Window Rot
by samantha Carpenter

I discovered a problem with my wood windows recently. The grille is rotting on the outside of the window, and it looks like moisture is getting inside the window, too.

So I “secret shopped” my first window and door jobber in the Memphis area.

Q: Could you easily find a parking space? Was the parking lot clear and litter-free? Were the windows clean?

A: Yes, I had no problem finding a parking space at the facility, and the outside grounds were well-kept and the facility’s windows were clean.

Q: Were you greeted as you entered the store?

A: I was greeted immediately upon entering the store by a pleasant young woman. I told her that I wanted to talk with someone about wood windows, and right as I was saying that, a salesperson said that he would be glad to help me.

Q: On a scale of one to five, five being excellent and one unacceptable, rate the neatness and orderliness of the merchandising displays.

A: five. The windows, which are made by a Northwest U.S.-based company, had very attractive displays, were very clean and operated correctly.

Q: If you asked an employee a product-knowledge question.  Did the employee answer your question satisfactory, or get an answer for you? Ask if you need any other assistance?

A: We started out our window conversation when I explained that the grille on my window was rotting. I also explained that it looked like moisture was seeping into the inside of my window, too. He took me to the window displays where they had the wood interior/aluminum-clad exterior combination. He explained that if I wanted to replace my windows that this might be an option. But the salesperson wasn’t trying to push a whole new set of windows. He said that he would like to come out and measure my windows and look at them. He said that whether he sold me the windows or someone else did, I was going to need the windows measured. He said that my windows might just need new grilles on them. He also suggested a replacement system if it looked like all of the window but the frame needed to be replaced.

I asked if the company actually does the installation or if it works through a contractor. He said that the company works through a contractor, and could suggest one. He said his company is very concerned with whether the product is installed correctly, so it works closely with several contractors.

After showing me all the window displays, the salesperson took me into a conference room and gave me a brochure about the windows his shop carries. We talked about when he might come out to my house and take a look at my windows, and we exchanged information.

Q: On a scale of one to five, five being excellent and one unacceptable, how satisfied were you with the service you received from store employees?

A: A five; I was very satisfied with the service. The salesperson spent nearly 45 minutes with me, going over all the products available and what some solutions to my problem might be. He said that I didn’t have to redo all the windows all at once, but that I could do a few at a time.

Q: Based on this experience, would you return to this store?

A: Yes, I would definitely return to this store in the future. I can honestly say that based on this experience I would buy my windows through this jobber. The only thing is, as I told the salesperson, I will have to look at the other companies in the area. If I went to my husband and said that I only looked at one company, he would say, “No way!” But if I had to base it on this one experience, I was sold!


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