Apple's service guidelines include instructions on providing Apple with the data that reflects standard operating workflows and service management. In the first part of this two-part series on data organization within an AASP, let’s look at operational requirements.
Apple prefers standardized procedures that are followed across your AASP operations. Predictability goes a long way in improving efficiency.
This is reflected in Apple’s service guidelines for AASPs. The service guidelines also include instructions to provide Apple with the data that reflects this uniform way of working.
In the first part of this two-part series on data organization within an AASP, let’s look at all the operational requirements that you need to ensure from day one.
Repair & Service Operations
What does Apple recommend when setting up a service workflow?
- You need admin procedures that all staff have to follow.
- You need to ensure there is a flow to how customer communications is managed
- You need a system to control inventory.
- You need to maintain the repair database & service records, and ensure it’s protected at all cost.
What kind of repair information do you need to store? Your records should have:
- Customer information: This includes the customer’s name, address, phone number and email address for each repair recorded in Apple GSX. Apple considers accurate customer information to be “critical”, so much so that you can lose compensation for labor and parts if such information turns out to be incorrect.
- Purchase order number
- Repair information, including details of technician diagnosis
- Customer authorization of cost estimate
- Status of repair services
- Repair information including repair type (mail-in, carry-in)
- Details of parts ordered & used
- Services provided
- Log of actions associated with the repair
- Product & parts serial numbers
- Apple’s repair number
- Any charges paid by the customer (same as recorded in your point of sale or accounting records)
All of this information must be structured such that one record has all of this information. You don’t have to know how to do this, you just need to ensure that your repair management software is set up to be compliant.
In addition to this, you need to make sure that this database is accessible from the service area, the repair area, the inventory area, and the storefront. Essentially, your staff should have the ability to access and add information at any time.
Saas or cloud software is typically more flexible in this context as you’re not limited to installations on a set number of devices.
And, of course, the information must be made available to Apple if necessary, via an export for example.
Finally, it is your responsibility to have a backup of this information in case the original is lost. Once again, Saas software does this by default. For instance, cloud backups are part of Fixably’s service offering and you’re guaranteed the safety of your data.
What should you capture in the service documentation?
You need to provide customers with a written estimate, which authorizes you to complete the repair at an agreed upon cost.
The cost estimate should also contain the following information:
• Your business name (and maybe the registration number)
• The address & phone number of the repair location
• The customer information
• The date when you received the device
• The device’s serial number & warranty status
• Issue description
• Cost estimate for the repair
• Signature of the person accepting the device for repair
• And any other requirements set by local regulations
The customer needs to sign the document to authorize the repair. And if you need to change the estimate, you need to get additional authorization from the customer and log that authorization.
To ease this process, it would be best to set up Apple-compatible templates that everyone uses by default.
Apart from these, your repair database also needs to haven a signed service document with the following information:
• Dates and times for — product received, diagnosis, repair completed, all customer communication
• Apple Repair ID number (GSX Number)
• Name and Tech ID of technician performing the repair
• Description of diagnosis, repair
• Indicate repair type (carry-in, mail-in, etc.)
• Serial numbers and descriptions for replacement parts
• A cost breakdown of parts and labor (and any other cost associated with the repair)
• Warranty updates for product and replacement parts
As with the cost estimate, the customer has to sign the service document.
Plus, you need to ensure this data is not lost — meaning you need to make provisions for backups.
What you need to do if you use courier services
When courier services are used for pick-up and delivery of products, the Service Provider is required to collect the following information:
• Name of the courier company
• Tracking number of the shipment
• Name and signature of the courier agent (at both drop off and pick up)
• Keep all receipts and documentation of shipments (drop off and pick up). The documentation is required to track and investigate KBB/KGB, lost shipments and all incorrect debits. Also, it is necessary to keep a record of the KGB serial numbers received by the Service Provider (packing list) and to properly match the KGB with specific repairs.
The simplest way to guarantee you’re compatible with Apple’s requirements is to choose a solution that is built specifically for AASPs. We work with over a 100 AASPs all over the world and our repair tracking system is designed to meet these requirements out of the box.
For instance, Fixably’s workflows make certain that your staff capture the correct information every single time. Here is an example of a simple workflow.
In part two, you can learn more about Apple’s reporting requirements and how Fixably provides you with information that supports greater profitability at your Apple authorized repair center.
Fixably offers an out-of-the-box service solution that is compliant with all Apple’s requirements. If you’re struggling with some of these, book a demo to find a solution.