Apple rumored to improve Genius Bar service with shorter wait times

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Apple is said to be prepping major changes to the Genius Bar at its brick-and-mortar retail stores, in hopes of offering customers shorter wait times and quick overnight repairs.



MacRumors on Wednesday said that it has received word that Apple plans to overhaul its Genius Bars in an effort to increase customer satisfaction. The details come a day after AppleInsider first reported that Apple is now drumming up excitement with its retail employees, promising something that will make a "big" impact.



Specifically, author Eric Slivka cited three new changes that will allegedly be implemented:



Active queue management -- Apple's goal is for walk-in customers headed to the Genius Bar to be served within 30 minutes. To meet this goal, the stores will reassign some employees from other areas of the store when needed.



Overnight repairs -- Retail stores will reportedly place a greater focus on overnight repairs, with the goal of a faster turnaround for customers who need their Apple products fixed. however, this will come at somewhat of an expense to "While You Wait" repairs.



Multitasking -- Genius Bar employees will be asked to serve multiple customers at once, rather than just focusing on one person. Employees will help another customer during downtime (such as during a computer reboot), and support staff will attempt to pair customers who have reservations for similar or identical issues.

"While Apple is pitching the changes as a significant enhancement to support services in its retail stores, others are not so sure," the report said. "One Apple retail store employee familiar with the changes noted that the company is trying to 'do more with less,' pulling in less-qualified Creatives and offering less personal attention through multitasking in order to deal with customer demand rather than hiring new staff.



"The employee also expressed concern about low stocks of parts available at retail stores and how without a change in how parts are allocated and delivered many repairs will not be able to be completed overnight as planned."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 43
    joe hsjoe hs Posts: 488member
    I've never previously had any "wait time" before, just walked in and came out a few minutes later.
  • Reply 2 of 43
    damn_its_hotdamn_its_hot Posts: 1,193member
    So this is the BIG deal that the retail employees were notified was coming? Huh - can't say that I have had to wait too long in the past.\
  • Reply 3 of 43
    msnlymsnly Posts: 378member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Joe hs View Post


    I've never previously had any "wait time" before, just walked in and came out a few minutes later.



    I've had to wait after my scheduled appointment and experienced a multitasking Genius before. They were replacing one person's iPhone while replacing mine's screen and this was all a few months ago.
  • Reply 4 of 43
    eaieai Posts: 417member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Joe hs View Post


    I've never previously had any "wait time" before, just walked in and came out a few minutes later.



    In the Regents Street, London store you frequently have to wait 10-15 minutes even if you arrive before your time slot. Also, I've had even relatively simple repairs like swapping the DVD drive take 10 days or more.
  • Reply 5 of 43
    pgb0517pgb0517 Posts: 3member
    Can we stop using "brick-and-mortar" to describe retail stores? That description is as tired as "information superhighway." I think we all know if the reference is to a physical store from the context.
  • Reply 6 of 43
    john.bjohn.b Posts: 2,739member
    Overnight repair sounds good, unless you had to travel some distance to get to the Apple store in the first place...
  • Reply 7 of 43
    wplj42wplj42 Posts: 439member
    My store does not have a Genius Bar. Maybe that is the problem. Wait times were there in my experiences. Someone helping me was allegedly multi-tasking, and actually slowing me down. Rather than visit a Retail Store, I'd purchase Apple Care next time. I don't believe Apple Stores are any better than other retail stores. I have waited as long for help at an Apple Store as I did on hold with Apple Care. My own fault for buying a computer during the release of a new version of the OS. Won't do that again.
  • Reply 8 of 43
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,623member
    Plus, the new Friend Bar service is expected to decrease Genius Bar wait times as well.



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9ZnwvyAk8k
  • Reply 9 of 43
    finetunesfinetunes Posts: 2,065member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pgb0517 View Post


    Can we stop using "brick-and-mortar" to describe retail stores? That description is as tired as "information superhighway." I think we all know if the reference is to a physical store from the context.



    OK--How bout GLASS & STEEL?
  • Reply 10 of 43
    joe hsjoe hs Posts: 488member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pgb0517 View Post


    Can we stop using "brick-and-mortar" to describe retail stores? That description is as tired as "information superhighway." I think we all know if the reference is to a physical store from the context.



    many of them, well, 5th ave and shanghai aren't even made of brick
  • Reply 11 of 43
    lilgto64lilgto64 Posts: 1,147member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post


    Plus, the new Friend Bar service is expected to decrease Genius Bar wait times as well.



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9ZnwvyAk8k



    What's next? An Apple employee at your local brew-pub to chat endlessly about anything you like - provided you're buyin'



    I guess the original announcement headline "Apple Retails Employees will be expected to do More with Less"didn't pan out so well.



    Also coming soon - iKindergarten - where Apple Employees will hang around at the local park near the teeter totter and talk to preschoolers about Apple products they might inherit someday. (what's that? the guy hanging around the playground is not an Apple employee) Uh, please disregard that last announcement.
  • Reply 12 of 43
    wplj42wplj42 Posts: 439member
    ... And how can they call it a Bar without Beer and Pretzels?
  • Reply 13 of 43
    Because everytime I go there, there are a bunch of knuckleheads.
  • Reply 14 of 43
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Joe hs View Post


    I've never previously had any "wait time" before, just walked in and came out a few minutes later.



    Well, this is probably a bigger deal for people who actually live within civilization, rather than, say... Omaha.



    Major flagship Apple Stores in large cities consistently have LONG wait times... San Francisco is one example.
  • Reply 15 of 43
    joe hsjoe hs Posts: 488member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jasonr94102 View Post


    Well, this is probably a bigger deal for people who actually live within civilization, rather than, say... Omaha.



    omaha? the UK isn't that bad I'll have you know
  • Reply 16 of 43
    sendmesendme Posts: 567member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Active queue management -- Apple's goal is for walk-in customers headed to the Genius Bar to be served within 30 minutes. To meet this goal, the stores will reassign some employees from other areas of the store when needed.






    I don't think that waiting in line for a half hour to be helped is good service.
  • Reply 17 of 43
    This is a really good idea they need to make the wait times much shorter. I went to the fifth ave store in April because my macbook pro had kernel panic. I got there around 11 and I found out that I wouldn't be helped until 1:30 am, when I came back I found out that it was a graphics problem that was common in that macbook model. My applecare covered the fix but I was told it was going to take a week to fix. I needed my computer that weekend to finish up some work so I had to buy a new computer to ensure that I would be able to finish on time. I think overnight repairs is a great idea, if they had it a month ago I wouldn't have had to buy a new computer.
  • Reply 18 of 43
    sheffsheff Posts: 1,407member
    Hm.. my apple store already serves within 30 minutes, even during busiest times. If you have an appointment and you come right on time it's usually a 15 minute wait.





    I would be OK with sharing a Genius with a person who has the same problem as me, but helping people during "downtime" or "reboot" would just ruin the service for me.
  • Reply 19 of 43
    wplj42wplj42 Posts: 439member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jasonr94102 View Post


    Well, this is probably a bigger deal for people who actually live within civilization, rather than, say... Omaha.



    Major flagship Apple Stores in large cities consistently have LONG wait times... San Francisco is one example.



    My store is in Santa Rosa, CA. Not a thriving metropolis, but always a busy store. If I leave CA for Oregon, there are only three stores in the whole state, and are all near each other.



    Jason, no need to be a smart-assed CA snob, especially in just your second post. You make the rest of us look bad.



    Omaha ... the only store in the entire state.



    http://www.apple.com/retail/storelist/
  • Reply 20 of 43
    ssquirrelssquirrel Posts: 1,196member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sheff View Post


    Hm.. my apple store already serves within 30 minutes, even during busiest times. If you have an appointment and you come right on time it's usually a 15 minute wait.





    I would be OK with sharing a Genius with a person who has the same problem as me, but helping people during "downtime" or "reboot" would just ruin the service for me.



    Do you really need to be making small talk with the Genius staff while your system is rebooting? Let them use that 5 minutes to solve someone else's problem or at least move it along to the next step.





    Quote:
    Originally Posted by WPLJ42 View Post


    My store is in Santa Rosa, CA. Not a thriving metropolis, but always a busy store. If I leave CA for Oregon, there are only three stores in the whole state, and are all near each other.



    Omaha ... the only store in the entire state.



    http://www.apple.com/retail/storelist/



    Yeah I live in Louisville KY. There are stores in Indy and Cincy, both within 90 minutes, but the Louisville store is always jam packed full of people and hard to move around in, especially if you have a large stroller w/you like I do heh.
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