I think this is a story worth sharing: I'd like to explain how Jared values it's customers . I'll continue to share this story, anywhere I can, to hopefully prevent others from having a similar experience. Unfortunately, Jared has not only provided us with a horrible product at the cost of nearly $10,000 and mislead us during the presentation and purchase of the product, they refuse to admit their wrong doing and provide a refund. Instead, they admit that the sales person breached policy but still refuse to provide a refund.
During the process, I must admit I was a bit apprehensive about using Jared. A friend of mine had bought an engagement ring from Jared, which broke in half (that's not a typo- the band literally broke into two pieces). He warned me of the struggle he had to get a refund, even within the 30 day return period. It required several visits to the store, endless arguing, and as expected, the emotional tole caused by your future wife having one of the most invaluable and sentimental pieces of jewelry break after less than a month of wear. In addition, another friend warned that the customer service they experienced after the purchase was contemptible. Still, they had to experience this service every six months when they returned for the semiannual inspection or have any repair work done. Both couples had warned me of their regrettable experiences. Yet, instead of avoiding Jared, I approached with an open mind. While speaking with the sales representative, I warned her that I had heard of several poor experiences at Jared. They replied with a smile and stated, "we're one of the largest company in the country. We couldn't have grown this big without doing something right." This is where the problem may lie- like other enormous companies, they seem to have lost touch with their customer and often fail to ensure the customer has a pleasant experience. Why rely on return customers when you're so large that you constantly draw new customers? It's important to remembers that a customer who has a good experience share their story with their closest friends and family, while a customer who had had a bad experience will tell everyone; this is exactly what I aim to do- warn everyone.
The story begins in late 2011. I visited many jewelry stores while searching for an engagement ring for my fiancÃ© of 9 years. I experienced varying levels of customer service at the different stores. Jared provided a good experience (or so I thought), pampering me with water and coffee, holding doors and continually praising me with comments such as, "she'll love her new platinum ring." After nearly a month of searching, I narrowed my search to two stores, both with comparable settings and diamond characteristics. During the final visit to the stores, where members of family were also present to see the final purchase. I explained the specs of the competitors ring, to which they replied, "this is a obviously a better deal." The sales representative pulled the ring from the showcase and informed me that it was platinum. While I was certainly a novice when it came to jewelry, I was aware that platinum is more valuable than gold. They explained that the platinum alone offered at least a $1000 difference between the two rings. It was an easy choice- I selected Jared and purchased the ring and an extended lifetime warranty. Total cost: just shy of $9,000.
The ring was custom. I had bought a loose diamond and the band separately. I also paid extra to have the head turned into a "kite setting," offsetting the diamond to provide a unique touch. This required that the ring be sent away to be worked on. When it returned, the problems began:
1.) The ring returned a day later than they had told me. This typically wouldn't be a big deal, but I had planned an 8 hour trip to visit family around Christmas, in preparation for the proposal. The trip was delayed, though it wasn't the end of the world.
2.) When the ring arrived, I picked it up from the store. When I got home, I was looking at the diamond and noticed a large black inclusion in the diamond. This wasn't there when I had been shown the diamond in the microscope. When we returned from the trip, I took the ring back to Jared. The problem? They had put the wrong diamond in the ring! Not the one I was shown under the microscope and chosen, a lower grade diamond. Of course, they were more than willing to take more money for the diamond I has initially chosen- at a cost of about $1000 more. So again, the ring was sent away to be worked on.
3.) Again, I picked the ring up from Jared. Now, due to increased suspicion, I carefully inspected the ring before leaving the store. I noticed large palpable scratches on the bottom of the band. They took the ring and said they would buff the scratches out.
4.) In order to have the scratches completely removed, it required 3 visits back to Jared. Each time, they claimed that they couldn't see the scratch. Oddly, every family member or friend was able to see and feel the scratches when asked to run their finger along the surface. Finally, after the third visit, the scratch was gone.
4.) About 2 weeks after receiving the ring, I proposed. She said yes and was in love with her ring. She's a nurse, so she usually wears the ring at home, two days a week. She doesn't wear the ring to work because of medical gloves and she doesn't wear the ring in the evening (unless we are going out) or to bed. About two months, she noticed that the diamond was loose. She returned to the store to have it repaired.
5.) While searching in the system, they couldn't find my account. She couldn't have the ring repaired until they found my account. I returned to the store to find that they had spelt my name wrong on the account (despite using my drivers license) and had enrolled us into a financing agreement that was completely wrong. The name was fixed in the store, though it required nearly two hours on the telephone at home to clear up the financing agreement.
If you've lost count, the ring is now being worked on for the 5th time in less than 4 months.
6.) The ring returned weeks later, and the diamond was fixed. After inspecting the ring, new scratches were noted on the band, requiring the ring to be returned and buffed. This is now the sixth return.
7.) We picked the ring up a week later. The scratches were gone. We had gone a month or two without problems- the longest stretch yet. We were in NYC for our engagement photos. While walking up 5th Avenue towards central park, my fiancÃ© glanced at her hand was astonished to see that the diamond was not only missing, but the ring had broken in half. The entire ring had split in half.
The engagement shoot was cancelled and $500 was lost. Moreover, we now had a ring, in 3 pieces. The missing piece contained a $6,500 diamond. The next 5 hours were spent searching for the setting and the diamond. If the fact that our engagement shoot was cancelled wasn't bad enough, the humiliation that my fiancÃ© and I endured was. Somehow, we located the diamond, still in the setting, in the crack of the sidewalk about 6 blocks from Central Park.
Not only had there been no blunt forces applied to the ring, it was only 5 months old and worn two times per week.
When we returned to Jared, we were told, "I've never seen this before… she must have hit it on something." After an hour of arguing, they offered to fix the already broken ring. After the service we had endured, we knew what the process was likely going to be, so we would only settle for a refund. They refused. They offered to replace the ring with a new one. Without the option of a refund, we accepted a new ring (same ring and setting, just new).
8.) After the ring was returned, two days later than they promised, we went to pick it up. While inspecting the ring, my fiancÃ© asked why the ring felt lighter than other gold and platinum rings that she had tried on. They informed us that our ring was probably not "full platinum." This was shocking, considering I was never informed that I was buying a partially platinum ring. They then stated, "your paperwork explains the ring and the platinum. It should say that it's only 58.5% platinum and the remainder is cobalt." I retrieved my paperwork, which did not say anything about the composition of the platinum ring. It did say, however, "platinum" all over the documents and the receipt. In addition, the entire time I was looking at the ring before making the purchase, I was told the ring was platinum.
The day I planned to purchase a ring, I had to decide between two rings: they were almost completely identical, except one was white gold and one was "platinum." Well, they got me. They were able to persuade me into buying a "platinum" ring making me believe I was receiving a deal. Boy was it a deal…
So where does that leave us now? We've spent a total of 10 hours on the phone with Jared making attempts to receive a refund. They continue to make false promises, fail to return phone calls, and make no effort to rectify a situation caused by extremely poor workmanship and customer service. We'll continue to share this message wherever we thing people will see: social media, review sites, and by word of mouth. We're also starting the legal process to sue Jared for a complete refund.
I hope this story helps prevent others from making the same mistake I did. Though just as important, I hope Jared finally takes this seriously and not only does the right thing in this situation, but also makes a diligent effort to improve their service before they lose many more customers.
Product or Service Mentioned: Jared Repair.