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HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

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  • HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

    I usually get on here every day to read what woodworkers have to say. The one thing that I read that intrigues me is the vast difference in experiences at the HD stores concerning the ww tool displays. I read some stores have little to no displays, some have displays that show little effort put into it, some that are so cramped into an area you cannot get around the tool to inspect it and some that do a pretty good job attracting potential buyers. What is going on with HD that there is so much inconsistency across the country? Why do some stores at least make an effort to make us want to buy the tool and others seem to not even care? Is it managers, regional managers or maybe the higher ups on the corporate ladder? I think most would agree that when you go to shop for a particular product you want to be able to see it, touch it, inspect it, see how it looks at its best and to see all the parts that go on that product. I do like HD but just not sure what is going on.

  • #2
    Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

    Home Depot was conceived as a warehouse store for builders. Evidently most of the store managers have not had experience with retail customers or marketing basics. The marketing mix, or 4 P's, are Product, Place (distribution), Price and Promotion seems to be lacking at most HD outlets.

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    • #3
      Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

      Display space is at a premium in all of the HD stores. I know in our store it is a never ending task to try and make room for new items that are received. Right now Dewalt must be emptying their warehouses because we are receiving shipment after shipment of cordless tool kits. Our overheads are crammed full and the stuff on the shelf is collecting dust because no one is buying it. Our Ridgid and Ryobi tools are flying off the shelves and we can't keep up on stock in those items.

      While store setup follows an overall plan-o-gram, the store manager has some leedway in allocating space the way he wants it. It would be nice to be able to really setup the hardware dept where all of the big tools could be displayed and even plugged in so that you could actually turn one on.
      sigpicSeldom Wrong, BUT Never in Doubt

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      • #4
        Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

        "and even plugged in so that you could actually turn one on."

        Whoa there! That has lawsuit written all over it. Last thing HD needs is a evening newscast saying how someone was taken to the hospital after they cut the tip of their finger off while "test driving" a TS on display at the local store.
        ---------------
        Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
        ---------------
        “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
        ---------
        "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
        ---------
        sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

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        • #5
          Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

          Originally posted by harley130 View Post
          <snip> It would be nice to be able to really setup the hardware dept where all of the big tools could be displayed and even plugged in so that you could actually turn one on.

          I'm betting that the insurer won't permit this. Our church recently gave up on lighted candles (!?) because they felt that the insurance savings was worth it.
          Later,
          Chiz

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          • #6
            Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

            I agree that it's probably a liability issue where powering up a display tool is concerned. I'm not going to say that they don't do it but all of the times that I've been in the local Woodcraft store I can't recall ever seeing, or hearing for that matter, a tool running in the display area there either. That is off course with the exception of a mfg. rep. or store employee giving a demonstation seminar and they do those at HD too.
            Teach your kids about taxes..........eat 30 percent of their ice cream.

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            • #7
              Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

              Originally posted by BadgerDave View Post
              I agree that it's probably a liability issue where powering up a display tool is concerned. I'm not going to say that they don't do it but all of the times that I've been in the local Woodcraft store I can't recall ever seeing, or hearing for that matter, a tool running in the display area there either. That is off course with the exception of a mfg. rep. or store employee giving a demonstation seminar and they do those at HD too.
              They do have charged batteries in most of the drills. I wouldn't mind having the ability to ask an employee to turn some things on. I bought a Ryobi 18V dust buster clone last week as part of the ultimate power deal. The thing didn't suck, so much so that I actually decided to take advantage of the 30 day satisfaction guarantee and return it (I've never returned a used tool before). If I could have test driven it before buying it, I think I would have left it on the shelf.

              The other interesting factoid from this exercise is that if you return one of the tools, they just prorate the return value instead of taking away the $30 discount; so you still get 20% off the rest of the tools you kept even though you didn't reach the requisite $149 after the return.

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              • #8
                Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

                I don't know about the rest of the HD's, but we try to take the blades off of our cordless saws and would also do that with any other saw that would be plugged in. On some of the circular saws the tool reps put a cardboard look a like blade on them. Bet that could be done on a TS also. Other thing would be a lockout so only the HD associate could power the circuit up. There is ways to do it safely if one puts their mind to it.

                What we need is an adult only tool demo pit where you could actual make some saw dust, now that would be nice. DRIVE BEFORE YOU BUY, what a thought!!
                sigpicSeldom Wrong, BUT Never in Doubt

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                • #9
                  Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

                  I agree with the fact that you just can't have this stuff plugged in and ready to go. Too many people who don't have a clue and the lawyers would really love it. Too bad of course for the shop smart.

                  Speaking of which... I notice that in the three Home Depot's that I have visited (Binghamton, Ithaca, and Corning area), they have this nice two-story garage/shop building out in the parking lot, that they advertize as one of their yard building products. This is a pretty nice size little building, completely weather tight and fairly well-built. I often thought that if I was running the show, it would be a great place to set up your tools display. There's certainly room enough for a couple complete "demonstration" shops. Then that's what I'd do, use it for weekly demonstations, show off all the tools they carry. Even have it available for "appointments" should any customer want to see and hear a tool demo'd, that they're serious about purchasing. It wouldn't take up any floor space in the store, and it would be completely secure from those with curious hands and fingers.

                  But of course, this has little to do with the current inconsistancies that appear to exist throughout the Home Depot empire. After more than four years of having a Home Depot only a mile or so away, I'm convinced that the staff just shows up for work and navigates their way from paycheck to paycheck in whatever manner best suits them. Every now and then you find an employee who understands the importance of his or her job, but beyond that, probably 90% don't have a clue as to why they are there or what they are supposed to do. In the case of my local store, the manager seems to be the worse of the lot.

                  For example, a couple of weeks ago, they had this "Earth Day" special, you visit the store and they give you a free canvas-like shopping bag. My wife thought that was neat, so lets go see whatever else they might have in the tools dept. Well, nothing at all new since my last visit a couple of weeks before, but at least my wife probably got her shopping bag. Nope! Nobody in the store seemed to have any knowledge of them (she had asked about six of those orange-aproned roamers). So, I said we needed to go ask that cute little blond that is always so helpful... I had seen her heading toward the service desk. (Actually, I've come to know there's three people in my store that I can get help from.)

                  Sure enough, she was there and knew exactly what they were; said they were out there near the paint desk at 10:00 when she came in. So she called the paint dept. They said the manager picked them up and took them out back sometime that morning. So our young friend, called "out back" and asked about them and then told us that he's bringing them out and it will be about five minutes or so. So we wandered over to appliances and came back about twenty minutes later.... still nothing! About this time, I figured we were wasting our time, but I'll go back to the employee area and ask myself.

                  Sure enough, there sat a fairly big box, stacked full of these cloth shopping bags. Two "aprons" who were apparently on break, asked if I needed help and I explained about the bags... neither had any knowledge of what they were for, but suggest we all go and ask the manager. So around the corner we went and found him fiddling with the copy machine.

                  Hearing our inquiry, he just gave me gave me a glare, and muttered that he had "put some out there this morning" (it was about 3:00 p.m. at the time). I told him there were none there now and that customers were asking about them, including me. He just walked over picked one out of the box and tossed it at me, and went back to the copy machine. The two associates just looked at me, sort of helplessly. That was it... I guess the manager was just overburdened by the whole process, and figured he'd given enough of them away that morning.

                  Overall, it wasn't a big deal I suppose. For one thing, I was probably more in shock that is character was actually the manager. I had run into him on other occasions and had come to know that he was simply a waste of time for any reason. (Have you ever looked into the eyes of an incredibly dumb dog, knowing that all you could hope for that he'd show up for his supper?)

                  My first contact had been a couple of years prior, when I had inquired about the new jig saw that Ryobi had recently introduced. It showed up about six months after it was announced and I had examined it. But then the display unit just disappeared. About two months had passed and I see the tool marked down to $50 ($20 off). Well, there still was no display unit, but it's spot was marked. Well I asked the nearest orange apron and he went and got the "manager responsible for that area". Yep, it was this guy!

                  He told me that Ryobi didn't make a "corded Jig Saw". I told him they do, and it's on sale, and I want one. Then he gives me the ol' "Show ME". So I do, but then he says, "See, there isn't anything here... they don't make one". Like "Duh"... there's the label, the picture, the SKU". He then tells me it's on clearance and there isn't any and walks away. The young man in the orange apron, tells me never mind him... we'll go check the computer. It shows four in stock and after fifteen minutes or so of searching the overhead we find one. (I still have it, not a bad tool for the price.)

                  Another time, I ask this "manager character" if I can get a couple of sheets of birch ply ripped in half so I can better handle it in and out of my van. He tells me "we don't do that", and of course I point to the panel saw and the "sign"... only to be told that "we don't do that anymore". So, I end up going to the other side of town and getting my stuff there. (A few days later I'm back at HD to buy some stain and hear the saw buzzing away. Obviously I had asked the wrong person.)

                  Awhile after that, I went in into the store to buy some hardwood plugs. Again, I get directed to this guy as he's in charge of the area. He ask's me what size I want and then goes over and hands me a dowel. I don't want a dowel, I want hardwood "plugs", you know, precut, packaged? He tersely tells me that a dowel will do just as good, just pound it in and cut it off, we don't carry plugs. (I did find them a couple of weeks later (they're over by the drill bits), but by that time, my order from Rockler arrived.)

                  Now I find this guy is the new "Store" manager. I guess it must be easy to advance in Home Depot, all you have to do is demonstrate a tenacity for not helping the customers!

                  (Oh yeah, more about those bags... I have a relative who works at a HD down in the Washington DC/Maryland area. Seems they don't bother with this promotional stuff either, too much of a problem. It just gets shoved in the backroom somewhere, until it finally disappears.)



                  CWS

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                  • #10
                    Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

                    If you know he is the manager and he is really that terrible. You should complain about him by name on the survey. Let his boss know you aren't happy w/ his customer service. If the store is putting up decent numbers, how will anyone know there is a problem unless you tell them.

                    Of course, for good karma everytime you complain about someone you should praise another person. I try to follow that, but it is sometimes hard to remember to take the time out to call attention to people who really care do a good job.

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                    • #11
                      Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

                      To CWS

                      I guess at every HD there are some DA (Dumb A$$) managers and associates. I would bet your guy is just a ASM (Assistant Store Manager) and not the store manager. HD does get a few dingbat ASM's from time to time.

                      There is a simple way to get back at the guy who is a DA, just get his name off his apron and give the number on your receipt a call. Tell the survey line about your problems and mention him by name. Do this a few times and someone will get the message and start questioning why he is still a employee. I can guarantee you that those surveys are tracked and the store manager gets the good, bad and ugly comments.

                      In fact, the surveys are referred to as the Voice of the Customer (VOC) and in order to get the bonus for making sales plan every six months, the store must also meet it's VOC goal. So, the more you complain about the DA manager the lower the store's VOC score is and as I said somebody is going to get fired up finding out why there is so many calls on the guy.

                      BTW, always look for the ole farckle with an orange apron on, chances are they will know more about what is going on and where everything in the store is than any other associate and some of the ASM's.
                      sigpicSeldom Wrong, BUT Never in Doubt

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                      • #12
                        Re: HD Ridgid WW Power Tool Display

                        Harley is right on with looking for the ole farckle at HD. The HD near me has one who works in the electric dept. I check his name tag and he's the dad of a high school friend. The kicker is he's a retired electrican - ran his own business for years. I always wait to speak to him if I have any questions.

                        A good story about a manager - I saw a Delta TS that was 15% off at Lowes (still are - some sort of clearance). Ordered on line and went to pick it up and was told they were out of stock. Sale ended that day so I figured I was out of luck. Three days later the manager calls me, says she has 2 on order and will honor the sale price. Two weeks later the saw comes in and I get another call that its been put aside for me. I pick up the saw (very heavy), get it home, lay it all out in the garage and realize it's too big for my shop. Returned it (now have a TS2410) and after all her effort the manager still smiled the whole time. Not knocking HD but good to see someone who knows how to manage customers.

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