Several weeks ago, I placed a job listing on jobs.joelonsoftware.com for a developer to add to my company. The website as most of you probably know is a subdomain of the popular Joel On Software website. While I wasn’t too keen on spending $350 for a chance at finding someone, Fog Creek did offer a 90 days, no questions asked money back guarantee and the listing would be posted for a full three weeks.
This week, the three weeks were up and I landed a grand total of 4 resumes. Not exactly the response I had hoped for. I realize that Worcester is probably not the hot spot for JoS readers, but I did expect to get more than 4 resumes, especially given that my listing had so many people viewing it.
But the bottom line was that I spent the money and didn’t get what I was looking for. I emailed Fog Creek support last night around 2am and per their guarantee, requested my money back. By 10am this morning, my money had been refunded. Talk about a great turnaround. That’s first rate customer service.
What’s even more amazing is that this level of customer service is absolutely unheard of. I’ve dealt with a lot of companies during my various business ventures and my personal life. Fog Creek’s absolute, unwavering commitment to their guarantee does nothing but bolster their reputation in my eyes. There was no trying to convince me to give it more time or to try again. It was just a simple here’s your money back, we’re very sorry it didn’t work out and we’re happy you gave it a try.
Why don’t other companies do this?
I’ve often wondered how Fog Creek got to the position they were in. There’s no longer any question in my mind. The way you treat your customers says a lot about the kind of company that you run. Sure, the products you sell are important. But it’s the people behind the products that provide value. If something ever goes wrong and you know you can count on your vendor for support, it makes it that much easier to choose them in the future or recommend them to others.