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PCC June 2004 Newsletter

Posted on June 1, 2004 by Jon Bach

June 2004
Puget Custom Computers

Thank you for your interest and support in Puget Custom Computers! You are receiving this email because you have subscribed to our mailing list. If you wish to be removed, you can find that link at the bottom of this email, or simply email me and I'll take you off the list right away.

Another great month has passed here at Puget Custom Computers, as our May sales were yet again record breaking, narrowly beating even our huge April sales levels! As always, there is a lot going on here, and this newsletter will tell you all about it!

Our newest feature article was posted only a few days ago, titled "The Pitfalls of Building Your Own Computer." One question I have been asked many times is the question "Why should I buy from a custom computer company as opposed to building a computer myself?" It's a fair question. My goal of the article is to objectively lay out the pros and cons of building your own computer system. You can check it out at https://www.pugetsystems.com?article.php?id=14 . If you have any questions about the article, feel free to email me or ask away in our forums!


We have recently noticed that some of our competitors are offering 3 year warranties bundled with all their computers. This has us wondering how important a warranty is to our customers. To find out, we are offering a free upgrade to a three year warranty with every system sold between June 1st and June 14th. Simply mention this newsletter to us and we'll add it to your order at no charge. Is a three year warranty a very important factor in deciding which company to purchase from? Place your vote with your order before June 14th!


As I said in our last newsletter, our focus of April and May was on quality control. Our biggest step in ensuring top notch quality control was our development of our online control system. In the past, our assembly crew would use paper check-off sheets to keep track of their builds. About a month ago, we phased this over to an online system -- we gave each person a workstation at their assembly bench, and had them check off a digital control sheet. This sheet not only logs who does what task, but logs the exact second that everything is done!

In the future, we will be making this information available to our customers. Imagine being able to log in to our website, and see not only the status of your order, but the exact second that things are being done. It's the next best thing to being in the room watching! It may not be the most useful of features, but we can definitely imagine it to be something our customers would enjoy having access to. Let me know what you think about this!

*** NEW STAFF ***

While April and May was focused on quality control, the focus over the next few months will be on additional staff. As you might know, I am getting married in August, and for the first time, must leave my small business in the hands of my capable staff. First, I have to have enough staff to get everything done!

Our first step will be to move Matthew, our lead assembly technician, to a full time position. This will be happening in mid-June. He will now be supervising all builds and will be handling our installations, leaving me (for the first time) completely out of the order process! To fill his old assembly position, we will be bringing in a new part time assembly person.

We also have hired a full time programmer to help get all our projects done! John, our PHP programmer, started last week, but will only be staying with us until mid-June. At that time, another programmer, Nate, will be taking over the position. We are really looking forward to our long long list of projects finally getting done!


With our new full time programmer, there are a lot of projects we're working on having completed soon! Right now, 100% of his time is devoted to a benchmarking system. What we're trying to develop is a system that extensively tests every computer we sell with a set of benchmarking software, and records the scores. Once we've got a decent catalog of data in the system, this will be able to offer all our customers a way to compare the various upgrades to your system. Most importantly, once enough data gets cataloged, we'll be able to offer these sorts of suggestions *before* the purchase, helping our customers get the very best performance vs cost! This will give us a powerful too to compare motherboards, RIAD arrays, video cards, etc. We'd like to offer a "Virtual Benchmark Tool", which will roughly estimate your systems benchmarks dynamically as you configure your systems!

Then we'll move on to building an improved tracking system, to allow detailed shipping tracking abilities, including the ability to track OUR supply shipments, so you know exactly when your parts are coming in for our build! We have a page long list of little things that need to be done on our website. Fixes, little new features, conveniences....there are tons of little things to be done. A few other big projects will be to build our own affiliate system and to add a section on our website to sell parts at reduced cost and much greater speed (we're partnered with a distributor who has warehouses all over the country). We're very excited about our new ability to get these projects done much faster. Look for an explosion of new features on our website over this summer!

As always, I very much welcome your thoughts. What suggestions do you have for us? Let me know!

Thank you,

Jon Bach
Puget Custom Computers
(425) 885-7014 voice / fax