Rent the Runway CEO scrambles to respond to frustrated customers as complaints about delays pile up on social media

Business Insider Finance 1 month ago
  • Rent the Runway customers are piling on complaints of delayed orders and unresponsive customer service.
  • In an email sent out to customers and obtained by Business Insider, CEO Jennifer Hyman blamed problems on "significant changes to our operation" that were meant to boost product selection.
  • "We are sorry, and we own this," Hyman wrote.
  • Hyman has also taken to Twitter to try to assuage the frustrations of customers. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Rent the Runway customers have taken to social media to rip the clothing rental service for shipment delays, a lack of advance notifice about issues with orders, and uncommunicative customer service lines.

The company has built up a loyal base since 2009, by offering consumers the opportunity to rent designer clothing.

But, thanks to what CEO Jennifer Hyman called a "significant" operational shift, the company has recently experienced delays.

"We are working around the clock (myself included!) to implement these operational transformations as quickly as possible," Hyman wrote in an email sent out to customers and obtained by Business Insider. "Upgrading systems while still running the business at full speed is complex. We know that we will make some mistakes, so for the next month, if you have time sensitive events, please order a few days earlier than you normally would. "

Rent the Runway didn't immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment.

Plenty of Rent the Runway consumers have sounded the alarm on Twitter over the last week. 

Hyman herself has taken up the task of responding to some of the frustrated shoppers.

The Twitter account of Rent the Runway's support desk has also been inundated.

"We know that we will make some mistakes, so for the next month, if you have time sensitive events, please order a few days earlier than you normally would," Hyman wrote in the email to customers. "We are sorry, and we own this."

Read the full email Hyman sent out to customers here:

We are committed to always being transparent and giving you the real play-by-play as we grow our business together. Over the last week and into the next few weeks, we are implementing significant changes to our operation.

These changes will greatly improve your experience by increasing the selection you will have from our Unlimited closet. However, in the short-term as we implement these changes, we know some of you are experiencing delays in shipments and therefore longer response times from our customer service team. Please know that the changes we are making will very quickly lead to more availability of the items you want and the consistent quality of customer experience you deserve.

We are working around the clock (myself included!) to implement these operational transformations as quickly as possible. Upgrading systems while still running the business at full speed is complex. We know that we will make some mistakes, so for the next month, if you have time sensitive events, please order a few days earlier than you normally would. We are sorry, and we own this. Everything we are doing today is to improve your Rent the Runway membership for the long-term and you should feel this improvement within the next three weeks.

We are beyond grateful for your commitment to Rent the Runway.


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