In more than 15 years of using GSX, I have seen a lot of developments and changes, but not as important to me as with this new version of GSX. Is it living up to expectations? This is what I propose to uncover for you.
For several weeks, this new version has been available for its users. Announced a year and a half ago, Apple's ambition was to make a major change
Simplify and modernise its APIs (Application Programming Interface)*
Upgrade the interface of its website to manage (almost) all aspects of an Apple repair.
This is the first step in updating GSX, for the moment the old APIs are being used in combination with the new ones. The second stage is scheduled for 2021.
Although essential, using the GSX website can be a time consuming and frustrating experience for Apple repair technicians. Here's a new version of GSX to the rescue that is supposed to bring a little freshness to our user's life... We secretly hope to have the interface revolution that Apple has the secret of. So, promise kept?
Please note that you will unfortunately not see visuals of the new interface, Apple does not allow its users to share them.
Pros 👍 :
Redesign of the interface: faster with an overview of the news
Here is the new GSX website with its new interface. That's good, because I think it's been 10 years since it hadn't evolved significantly! More in the air of time, we surprise ourselves to finally take back a little pleasure to use it... We access the information in a faster, direct and clearer way and we have an overview of things.
The creation of repairs is simplified: time saved
You will find a single page with all the information directly accessible. It is now easy to launch diagnostics, see results, add parts, and validate the repair.
Easier access to reports : : a better view of its service excellence
We are surprised to make two clicks when it took 10 for the same information. Whole hours are going to be saved by the technicians!
Customised lists ("My list") and advanced search
This is a real improvement that makes it possible to gain in productivity and no longer miss out on repairs. These lists allow you to save the result of a search, for example my own repairs that have been waiting for a part for more than 10 days.
For integrators: simplifying and modernising PLCs
They have been present for more than 10 years, with changes every year. Maintaining them was becoming more and more complicated. In addition, they were based on technologies that have become obsolete nowadays. With the new version, the number of APIs has gone from a hundred to around fifty, offering the same functions. More modern, they offer simplified versioning, without breaking certain compatibilities. This is a good step forward for all Apple GSX API integrators!
Cons 👎 :
The coexistence of two systems while waiting for the 2nd stage
There are still many bugs to deal with when searching for a part, for example, or an interface. Two versions of GSX have to be used to do certain actions until the migration is complete.
For GSX users, double data entry is a real waste of time. This concerns the customer's surname, first name, address, town and postcode, but also the symptoms reported by the customer, and the technician's diagnosis. Why not set up faster customer information entry?
Searches, calendars and navigation: serious ergonomic shortcomings
Searches in the lists are still not directly filterable on all fields at the same time. The global search remains too restrictive in my opinion and a quick search in the lists would not be too much.
Booking calendars still appear in the form of lists, whereas a more visual presentation, in hour-by-hour mode, and easily filterable would be a real plus for visibility and use.
Why load the whole page when all you need is information? Like when you want to quickly view a repair history, for example. It's too slow.
No personalised e-mails
When a new appointment is made, communication cannot be personalised. A pity, especially in these times when giving some additional information would be very useful in these times of pandemic.
Mandatory News Services
This can be handy in order not to miss important information, but I find it a bit infantile to block the user's account if he didn't read it in time.
In a nutshell
The new GSX takes a giant step forward. It is an encouraging first step, but still immature. It saves a bit of time compared to the old version. However, it is not possible to achieve the time savings that can be achieved by integrating the APIs into your IT system. There is still a long way to go to really adapt it to the needs of its users...
*Apple's GSX APIs are a set of functions for accessing the services that the website offers. All this through secure web requests. This allows, for example, a third party program such as Adjusto to create a repair in GSX without having to open the website. This avoids a lot of double data entry. It can also allow you to integrate the retrieval and creation of Apple appointments into your website. This is done in a totally secure way. Apple currently offers more than 50 APIs allowing you to do as many different functions.
For nearly 15 years, Yann Trauchessec has been developing his expertise in the field of service and repair centres for Apple customers. For 8 years, he worked as a technician and then as service manager. He has also specialised in consulting on the integration of Apple APIs and the development of service optimisation tools.