Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Email, Postage, Packing and Paper

While we spend a lot of time developing and producing some great products here at Benchcrafted, believe it or not, we also spend an enormous amount of time practicing the mundane.  So to clarify a few points and explain a bit about how we go about getting those products to our customers:

Email:  We're huge fans of email.  In fact we don't even publish a phone number.  We realize this is a bit unusual but it saves us lots of time and energy, both of which we'd rather be putting back into development and actual production.  Unless we're out of town (rare), we typically respond to emails within a hour or two during work hours.  It's not uncommon to get a response from us in those wee hours, we're not always conventional.

With that said, our responses aren't always exhaustive or sugar coated.  While we often make a lengthy reply when called for, short and sweet (maybe not always so sweet, but pickles are good too, right?) is the de rigueur.  We're not saying that you'll never get a snide response from us, but we do put the customer first, always, and any missteps by us are just that.

Postage:  We ship everything as economically as possible.  Small packages typically go out USPS, large go UPS.  We never charge for "handling", though to be blunt we probably should.  Most people would be surprised to find out how long so called handling actually takes.  It's not uncommon to spend hours per day packing and shipping.  We also never charge more than it costs us.  We know that shipping charges can be pretty thrilling (you know, like a car accident), but we don't take a cut.  In fact, we're not always the sharpest tools and oftener than we'd like to admit, we take a loss.

Packing: Though we've not received any comments, we're guessing some of our customers have been left scratching their heads at some of our packing material.  We're pretty professional about most our image but there's no place for fancy schmancy in the packing material world.  We always use new boxes for stability but our packing, in it's many forms is strictly hand-me-downs.  In fact we do one better than most of the "recycled" packing those green companies use, our packing is 100% re-purposed.  We source all our packing from a local company that deals in large amounts of electronics materials where we get all our myriad supplies.  What's this mean?  Well as many of you already know, it means unpacking a box from us doesn't bring to mind "corporate" or "professional", but it gets the job done AND again, it saves money.  I guess we're also happy it didn't require a second round of petroleum product manipulation either, though Uncle Ted probably wouldn't care one way or the other.

Paper:  Similar to that drivel directly above about packing, many people probably notice we never include invoices or packing lists in our shipments.  In this internet age, where DARPA has made all of us so happy, we don't really see the need of using more ink and paper just to confirm what you already know via the email receipt you received.  You probably also don't need a packing list to confirm what you are holding in your hands, only the sweetest piece of hardware you'll ever be able to hand down to your grandchildren!


  1. Good on you re: the handling. It burns me when I know they (whoever they are) are trying to make money on the handling. If a company is a mail order only type of outfit the price of the goods should reflect the handling. Actual shipping costs should be on top.
    Great way to run a business.

  2. Thanks Paul. Now we know at least one person reads this stuff!


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