Office Depot is looking into allegations of employees lying to customers

Office Depot is currently under fire over allegations that some of its locations and employees were lying to customers about stock levels on notebook computers if they thought the person wouldn't buy one of the companies profitable extended warranties or technology services.

As DailyTech reported yesterday; Laptop Magazine posted a story about the aggressive sales person at one location trying to sell a warranty with a system the publication wanted to buy. That story led to many comments from people claiming to be Office Depot employees saying that some locations told employees to lie about stock levels if the buyer didn’t want an extended warranty.

Today Office Depot Director of Public Relations Mindy Kramer contacted DailyTech and offered an official statement. The statement is as follows:

In response to your article, Office Depot would like to make the following comment:

First, as part of our commitment to providing office supply solutions to our customers, we offer numerous products and services, including service warranties and other complementary products and services for many technology products. These offerings are similar to other sellers of consumer electronics. Office Depot's objective is to offer such products and services to our customers, without regard to whether a customer purchases or does not purchase service warranties or other complimentary products and services. Although we offer a variety of sales promotions, like most retailers, we sell customers only what they wish to purchase. We do not have, nor have we ever had, policies or strategies contrary to this objective, and we do not condone sales practices to the contrary.   

Accordingly, we do not have any policies or sales objectives to limit the sales of laptop computers to only those customers who agree to purchase service warranties. Office Depot has been recognized with numerous awards for our commitment to customer service, so please know that we take this issue very seriously and will take the necessary steps to ensure that we continue to enhance the customer experience and promote quality in our customer-related processes. We are currently in the process of reviewing this situation, and if any associates have deviated from our sales objectives and policies, then they may be subject to disciplinary action, including termination.

If the allegations that some Office Depot employees made claiming that they could be terminated by managers for not selling enough of the service plans and tech services are accurate, things may be getting worse for employees. They can allegedly be fired for not selling enough of the add-ons and can now be fired for not selling the notebooks to customers who don’t want to buy the add-ons.

"We basically took a look at this situation and said, this is bullshit." -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng's take on patent troll Soverain

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