Having an Apple after-sales service doesn't have to be a necessity
Underestimated, the after-sales service is often perceived as the poor relation of Apple resellers. "It's only a service for the customer, it's not the most profitable". Sound familiar? It does. If properly optimized, after-sales service can be a powerful lever for increasing not only revenue, but also customer satisfaction in your center.
Having a service department has two major advantages:
1) At the commercial level
An Apple Authorized Service Center, thanks to its high quality after-sales service, is able to offer its users a complete product support. A "one-stop shopping" in a way. Moreover, the return of a defective product becomes a commercial opportunity: the proposal to buy a new device.
2) On the financial level
We must admit that it is not easy to make a margin as an Apple reseller, it is necessary to make volume. If you optimize your after-sales service, it is possible to increase your "Excellence Score". And consequently, financial incentives and customer satisfaction.
How to optimize your after-sales service to make it more efficient?
Here are 4 ways to improve customer satisfaction and profitability of your after-sales service.
Automate some administrative tasks
Creating files on the GSX website, encoding the diagnosis, searching for and ordering spare parts, closing the file, customer calls... All these administrative tasks can easily waste a technician's time. Time that could be dedicated to the repair. Did you know that a center handling 350 repairs per month spends 160 hours on administration? This is the equivalent of a full time technician… What is the ratio of administrative time to technician time? What is their cost per hour compared to the volume of repairs? By analyzing this type of data and automating certain administrative tasks, the center can increase its productivity and profitability.
Invest in the right software Repairs in GSX, invoicing software, inventory management... Most of the Apple authorized centers manage their sales and repairs with several software. Unsuitable for after-sales service, they are not always synchronized with each other. We notice a considerable loss of productivity with double (or even triple) data entry and encoding errors. By choosing a unique software that combines both GSX repairs and CRM functionalities (quotations, invoicing, stocks, etc.), you can quickly optimize your after-sales service. A smart investment that will quickly pay for itself.
Improving communication It may seem like a no-brainer to you, but having staff who are good communicators is a real asset to a center. A person's technical skills are not enough. They must be able to show understanding and respect for the customer, who is often unhappy about bringing in a defective product. You have to be able to ask the right questions to understand the problem and explain the process. The staff must take care of the customer from A to Z: from the moment the user drops off his device to the moment he gets it back. In my experience, the more transparent the communication, the higher the customer satisfaction. For example, send an automatic text message to the customer every time an update is made on his file and not only at the beginning and end of the process.
Adapting your internal organization In some poorly organized Apple repair centers, tasks are segmented and several people are involved at different stages. One technician opens the file, another one diagnoses and orders parts, a third one carries out the repair and ensures communication with the customer, etc. If the same person manages the file from opening to closing, the risk of errors is reduced and productivity is increased.
By taking the time to analyze your service center operations, you can discover many avenues for improvement, most of which are simple to implement. Optimizing your service center will result in a real customer experience and your profitability will increase.
For nearly 15 years, Yann Trauchessec has been developing his expertise in the field of after-sales service and repair for Apple customers. For 8 years, he worked as a technician and then as a service manager. He also specialized in Apple API integration consulting and the development of after-sales service optimization tools.