My short bio: Worked at Best Buy as a Geek Squad ARA, which stands for "Advanced Repair Agent" I am here to answer any and all questions about geek squad and best buy!

My Proof: http://i.imgur.com/Q5mQaCx.jpg

EDIT: Geeksquad does look very good on a resume, and in my opinion is a very good place to start! My comments and experience are from 1 precinct. What bugs me about Geeksquad is mainly how they treat their customers

Comments: 517 • Responses: 28  • Date: 

Fractal_Death135 karma

I had a terrible experience with Best Buy about 5 years ago, and now think they are the epitome of scum. Would you agree with me?

Oh, and paging /u/Fuck_Best_Buy.

Fuck_Best_Buy319 karma

Let's fuck shit up.

geeksquaddude75 karma

Lets reveal the worst parts of best buy

XTheDevistatorX33 karma

I think you did by posting this. You sound like a terrible Agent and terrible employee. I always find it funny when people blame their jobs for their shitty work ethic and attitude. Most people don't realize, you may get you're "big-boy" job at some point. But you'll probably be a shitty employee No matter where you work. Jobs aren't shitty, people's attitudes are.

Some_Dude_90 karma

*Your

Poor work environments (poor any environments, really) will foster poor attitude. If you don't realize creating a poor environment is going to cause your employees to care less about their job, and will breed shitty work ethics and attitude, i hope you never have people that work under you.

geeksquaddude20 karma

THIS!

Our managers would have us stay after the store closes and he would tell us to clockout and help, because our department could not afford overtime

geeksquaddude3 karma

I have to disagree with you. When I was first hired as an ARA, I really enjoyed it. I found the work I did fun. But slowly the precinct I was working for became more and more greedy. My managers started pushing me to sell more tech support service. I find it disgusting that we charge someone so much money to back up data, and to restore a computer 120$? Really? Before we are allowed to repair which the cost of that is 100$ We must charge them for a diagnostic which is 70$ I like to think I had a great work ethic. Everytime a client needed help I would offer it to them, bosses were always behind my back telling me to "make her buy tech support" or "Tell him his motherboard is bad" I really want to expose how greedy and selfish Geek Squad is. They constantly rip off uninformed customers. I left voluntarily and during my last few weeks there, I started doing free data backups, and even showed customers how to restore the computers themselves. I don't believe anyone should be charged 200$ to have a computer fixed. Especially when all the tools we use can be downloaded on line for free

geeksquaddude20 karma

I completely agree with you

UnsureSherlock51 karma

Ok, actual ARA (See "Repair Agent" by OP) here.

First off, this dude is what other agents would generally refer to as "useless" and probably doesn't have any actual background repairing machines, or even any sort of drive to do so. These tend to be the worst agents; the ones that come in not even having enough knowledge to pass an A+ test.

There are a lot of these ARAs, and they're generally regarded as the jokes, but we have to fill hours and since there's always at least one very knowledgeable ARA on staff at each store (generally speaking) we usually have these guys run automated backups, automated virus scans and general cleanups. Geek Squad Agents have in their disposal tools prebuilt for them that they can run from a bootable USB/DVD. Because these tools oftentimes work, they get a little too big in the head and think they're great.

But if you ask them to try and even partition and set up a disk using DISKPART, they're clueless. They're the same people that won't be able to understand why trying to install Windows 7 from a USB stick on a 3.0 port won't work unless you load the driver in as well (Win7 did not have standard drivers for 3.0. So the installer would load after POST into RAM, but then not be able to access the actual installer files on the USB stick) Please don't take this person as an end-all be-all for Geek Squad, they're the lowest common denominator and with his attitude, I would assume that he wouldn't be in a store doing too well in NPS (Net Promoter score. It's tied with our Turn Time for how we are scored). My store is in the top (at least last month). Turn time was consistently below 2 days, no matter the job, and 90% NPS (meaning 9/10 people were satisfied with the service)

EDIT: That's not how NPS is calculated. The store is currently 90%, I know that. But I'm totally off on how that number comes about. Scroll down in comments to see how it actually is.

If anyone is interested, I'd do an AMA as well from the perspective of one of the Geek Squad stores that actually try to help their customers, bend rules to make them happy, and perform up to snuff instead of being a bunch of pretenders. I'll answer any questions about procedures, policies, and anything else by how Geek Squad actually does it, and not how a lazy person who doesn't invest any effort into their job does it. Having knowledge is one thing, but actively giving a shit about what you do and putting your all into it is the difference between someone who thinks their company is shitty and writes AMAs bashing a company, and someone who tries to make things better by teaching others and having principles.

geeksquaddude8 karma

We have 3 ARAs in the precinct, One of them only wanted to run AJU and restore computers all day. I loved the first few months of my job, and I do have plenty of experience repairing computers. I am now A+ certified and currently trying to obtain other CompTIA certs. I'm sure some precincts are better than the one I have worked for. But my point is how Geek Squad tries to make its money. Lying to customers to make a sale is how no business should run

UnsureSherlock6 karma

Well first thing's first: I applaud you for trying to go for your other CompTIA certs. They're not much, but can get you into the private sector where the better money is faster than almost anything else. N+ is next. If you really want to make dough (and are patient and willing to read a fuckload) get your Cisco certs. It's hell, but will raise your salary around 10-20k a year.

To the other parts: There are always going to be shitty ARAs at every store. Not to be rude, but your attitude doesn't seem to say that you want to improve their knowledge, or find more willing participants to improve the company. It sounds like you've accepted the state of things and just want to bash the company vs. improve it.

When I first started working at Geek Squad, there were 3 other ARAs (my store is very high traffic).

One girl who didn't know what she was doing, so just did open certified box work (and was completely unwilling to learn the repair side of things)

One guy that just restored everything, and if presented with having to do something as simple as a data transfer, would just copy the entire directory of C: to a new HDD and wonder why the thing would either A: not boot or B: wouldn't load a user profile. No matter how many times I informed him that transferring the entirety of the AppData directory was a bad idea, he did it anyways.

And one other girl that was willing to learn whatever I threw at her since I came from the private sector. (Transferred to Geek Squad for part time hours since I went back to Uni)

I was the new guy, but still came in with a decent amount of knowledge. Instead of accepting the state of the precinct and their fucked up ways of doing things, I took responsibility and talked about the fucked up things I had seen with my Manager. She agreed with me on a lot of things, and wanted me to keep an eye on how things looked while actively coaching. Within 2 months, the girl who didn't want to learn, and just did certified didn't get hours anymore (since technically an OA can do that work anyways, and she got paid as an ARA, wasting money and MY hours). The guy who fucked up every machine got caught stealing shit after things got tight for him. The manager noticed how inept he was after we went over the day to days. He knew he wouldn't be around much longer, stole over a grand in merch, and eventually got arrested.

The other girl learned a lot, got her cert, and has since moved on.

I'm not saying all this to seem like I'm this bigshot, because I'm not in any way. Half my friends went to private I.T. companies and know WAY more than I do. But now I had a hand in hiring ARAs that are willing to try to do their best, and it shows with our numbers. We don't charge customers for things they don't need, because we don't need to with the traffic we pull. If I'm away for 3 days, I'm not worried that I'll be coming back in to a complete clusterfuck.

As for the ripping people off thing: I'm on the fence about that. Is it a little pricey? Yes. But go to any EasyTech at a Staples, and see the difference in knowledge. For 200$ at GeekSquad, you get 3 computers covered for a year, and no matter how many times you bring them in, you'll only pay to replace hardware if necessary or Data backups (we hold customers accountable to backing up their data)

To me, that's actually pretty fair. 3 computers for one year, 200 dollars, and we'll keep cleaning up your viruses, reconfigure anything how you want it, and fix the constant windows 8.1 update bootlooping issues or whatever the fuck else you throw at us.

geeksquaddude7 karma

Like I said maybe my precinct was just crap. I'm glad you find it enjoyable but I can't stand seeing myself charging people that amount of money to do something they could learn. I used to teach people on the counter how to repair it, if they couldn't afford tech support.

I am now no longer with the company and have an amazing IT job somewhere else

Multivak41 karma

What qualifications do you need to be a Geek Squad ARA?

geeksquaddude71 karma

High School Diploma. I don't consider it a "intense job"

Im__Bruce_Wayne__AMA34 karma

What's the most bizarre request you got from someone?

geeksquaddude73 karma

Oh this is easy! We have this very unique lady who would come in at least 6 times a month. Every time she came in she would ask us strange things one of them was to remove the "internet GPS locator" embedded on the motherboard. An another was to reformat her computers hard drive to protect against a man that was trying to "Hack Her"

Trogdor3435 karma

As a former geek squad CA, just out of curiosity.. which store did you work for? You can pm me the store number if you want...because the one with the lady having a guy "hack her" constantly sounds like someone from our precinct.

geeksquaddude15 karma

I worked at a pretty big store in California

bobdilbertson29 karma

How any problems have been a "is it plugged in " problem?

geeksquaddude37 karma

One person kept wanting to return speakers, because they were to dumb to figure out how to use them

doctechnical16 karma

What was the interview like? How interested were they in technical skills and what sort?

geeksquaddude17 karma

The interview was very simple, I explained how I know how to remove viruses and explained that I know what something looks like out of the ordinary

Mrfrunzi16 karma

How often do just run Search and Destroy to fix the problem?

geeksquaddude3 karma

Every time, the amount of free-ware we use is really sad TBH, I don't think Best Buy is Licensed to use any of it

Geloni14 karma

What's the worst thing you have found on a person's computer?

geeksquaddude31 karma

The obvious answer would be Pornography, specifically Simpsons Pornography

BlazeBro42013 karma

How Do I Use A Toilet Without Getting Fully Nude?

geeksquaddude4 karma

Shit in your pants? Thats how Best Buy treats its customers

Nomsfud10 karma

Why don't you guys train your computer sales associates to know anything about computers, let alone what they can do? I once had a guy basically push a Dell with a 4K display on me because the display was in 4K. I looked at him, and kept repeating that I didn't need a 4K display, it just isn't something I feel is popular enough to require a computer that can go into it. He just kept telling me it was good because it had a 4K screen.

Does Best Buy really care as little as to just sell shit without telling their customers what they're buying?

geeksquaddude8 karma

The sales associates are trained to sell. When they sell well they get praised and become favorites by their managers

Nopleone10 karma

Former Easy Tech here. How much micro managing do your bosses do?

geeksquaddude5 karma

My boss didn't give care about my department, all he did was focus on sales and texted on his iphone

Typo-Kign9 karma

I'm calling bull on this one. Got any more proof OP?

geeksquaddude10 karma

Lee_Ars7 karma

Did you have to meet sales or service metrics, and were those metrics tied to your actual job, or did they interfere with it?

I worked at Best Buy store 242 in Houston for three dark months waaaaaay the hell back in 1999, in the PC/Home Office section, and we were trained to sell PSPs/PRPs (that's Product Service Plans, not Sony PSPs, obviously) at any cost—and if that meant lying or "inboarding" (lowering a PC's price by the cost of the warranty in order to sell the warranty), then great.

I bring it up because considering BBY's short-sighted focus on extracting revenue at every single step of the customer experience, it'd be great to know first-hand exactly how you were benchmarked as an ARA—because war never changes. Did you have to sell PSP/PRPs for components when you interacted with customers, or did they just force you to push as many GS services as possible? Like, load up the person whose hard drive had obviously failed with a deluxe malware scan first, even though the computer couldn't boot?

geeksquaddude1 karma

In the beginning they kept me in the back repairing computers. Slowly they started pushing me to sell our Tech Support service. Time and time again if there were too many viruses on a clients computer, they would have us inform the customer, their computer needs to be restored. As we said that we were to push for the customer to accept our expensive data back up service

IH8creepers000003 karma

How common is it for geek squad employees to search through personal documents for compromising photos or really anything? How often does this stuff get copied onto a thumb drive for personal use?

I wouldn't never trust a place like best buy with my computer if I couldn't do it myself.

geeksquaddude2 karma

I have never seen stuff get copied, but I have seen agents browse through peoples computers for "fun"

rgdenis1 karma

Why do you guys scam people and accuse their computers or PCs to be 100% unable to return to working order and persuade them to buy new ones?

geeksquaddude6 karma

Because Best Buy does not care about its customers