Repair status visibility

My laptop has been away in order to get its keyboard fixed for 18 days now (since 14 July). Originally, it should have only taken 7-10 days but with every day past that estimate I grew more and more anxious. I have a certification exam next week and had originally planned to first learn for that on that laptop and also eventually take the exam on it. While learning hasn’t been such an issue thanks to the pretty good learning environment which also works on my iPad with an external keyboard, taking the exam on the tablet won’t be an option and neither will my gaming PC work here since I don’t have a webcam for it (this has been sent off to a friend of the family).

But that’s all solvable. What annoys me to the extreme, though, is that I don’t get any proper repair status update. On Friday of last week I called them and learnt that it should be ready some time in the middle of this week. When that date passed I called them again yesterday and they told me it might be ready on that day. Nothing happened and so I made another call this noon. All of a sudden it seems to once again has some parts waiting to be delivered to the service partner and it might once again take until the middle of next week until the repair might be done. WTF?!

I’m really pissed right now. I totally understand that sometimes the supply chain might be jammed or that there are simply too many repair requests in the queue for a small shop. What I don’t understand, though, is that in my case in particular but also with lots and lots of other stores that do repairs the customer has no visibility into the status of the repair.

As someone who works in the software industry I’m used to even the smallest thing being handled through issue trackers or service desks. I don’t know what’s the reason for the Apple service partner where my laptop is right now having only an internal system but I assume that with many it might be either that they are simply not aware that this is an issue or that license costs for such systems are often quite high and hard to handle for smaller shops.

And once again I think that would be something (in Austria) for the WKO (Austrian Economic Chamber) to help their members by first making them aware of modern service desk software and perhaps also perhaps even to collaborate on providing such a service for all its members.

If you’re working for a repair shop or know someone who does, I’d really be curious if that shop has such a system (with access to the end customers) or if they’d be interested in something like that 🙂

In the meantime, I still hope that I’ll get my device back on Monday…

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