Fashion retailer MDS Collections took to their social media pages to post an apology on Feb. 9, 2021.
The apology is likely a response to the 37 consumer complaints filed against MDS Collections between Jun. 1, 2019 and Dec. 31, 2020.
The bulk of the complaints were related to consumers failing to receive their orders.
Others reported that though they had waited over six months after the scheduled delivery date, they still had not received their items.
A series of Instagram stories were shared on their social media page on Feb. 9.
In the Instagram story, MDS Collection's founder, Joe Phua apologised to customers for the "inconvenience and pain" their operations had caused.
He added that 2018 and 2019 were "difficult years" for the fashion retailer. Thus, they decided to close all retail outlets in Singapore.
In doing so, Phua said that they were able to direct savings from rental costs towards customers.
They then decided to do live sales.
Factory in China affected by Covid-19
Phua also revealed that in June last year, their factory in China faced "their biggest problem due to Covid-19".
A fall in consumer demand had resulted in reduced fabric production, fewer orders for their factory and layoff of factory workers.
According to Phua, fabric and shipments schedule were "almost halved" during this period, which resulted in a delay in containers last year.
New customer service team
Phua also acknowledged that "customer service is lacking in many areas." He then explained the various manpower issues he faced, such as a high turnover rate in the department.
In Dec. 2020, he made the decision to re-hire the entire retail store team and trained them to take on customer service roles.
The new customer service team now plans to "solve every single problem" and will work towards replying and resolving "every single email" within 48 hours.
He ended the series of Instagram stories by issuing a final apology.
In contact with CASE
In response to Mothership's enquiries, Phua said in a statement that MDS Collections is in contact with the Consumer Association of Singapore (CASE).
As of last night, they have issued refunds to seven customers out of the eleven cases they have received.
MDS Collections is waiting for the details of the remaining affected customers and aims to resolve the issues within 48 hours after receiving them.
In addition, Phua said that he will counter three main problems:
Firstly, to counter shipment delay, Phua will engage another two shipping providers by Mar. 1, instead of relying on just one.
Secondly, Phua will revisit the company's work-from-home schedule as the customer service desk requires physical access to process returns and refunds.
These changes will be rolled out by mid-Feb., and all existing returns will be processed by Feb. 10.
Thirdly, Phua explained that some customers did not receive credits despite subscribing to the monthly plan because MDS Collections did not specify if a month was made of 30 or 31 days.
Hence, the system failed to recognise the month-end and did not issue credits. Phua said that he will carry out more tests before rolling out new functions in the future.
In addition, he will ensure that MDS Collections will identify "most if not all affected customers" who have missing credits by Feb. 13.
Customer service open throughout Chinese New Year
Phua also told Mothership that the customer service desk will be open throughout Chinese New Year to answer any enquiries.
Affected customers may email [email protected] and expect a reply within 48 hours.
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Top photos via MDS Collections