So I took my bicycle in for service earlier today and the experience left me wondering.
The technician accepted the bicycle and then told me to leave my name and phone number on a piece of paper, so he can call me tomorrow when the bike is ready for collection.
There is No records of this transaction! Until I pay, that is.
I went into analyst mode. Wondering how a business as big as this one, selling sporting equipment and offering an adjacent service not have a peace of mind inducing system in place for handling equipment service requests?
I offered to pay for the service now. I was bent on creating a record of my presence in the store and put my bicycle on the stores’ record keeping system.
‘No. That will mess up my paper work…’ the technician explains, politely.
Why? I asked.
‘All bicycles that have been paid for are not expected on the shop floor. I will have too much explaining to do.’
I was uncomfortable. And I still am. What happens to me if this guy for some reasons don’t show up for work tomorrow? And the day after? No, I wish him no ill.
What happens if this guy gets possessed and decides to borrow my bicycle and things go south?
There is no proof I left my bicycle at this shop for service.
What happens if the store is forced into a situation where it has to make an insurance claim, how does it account for my bicycle?
I guess I won’t be this uneasy if I had used this shop before. Maybe I would have been happier if the service was a wait to get offering.
Something as simple as taking down my details (or pulling it from their records as I have patronised and still patronise a different branch of the business), my bicycle’s unique ID (yes, bicycles have those) and then issuing me a signed transaction confirmation slip or an electronic equivalent would have been helpful and reassuring. Yes, something that basic, yet powerful.
Which business operates without basics like this, today?
And in all of this, I hid my discomfort as there is a huge chance this is business as usual for the lad and I don’t want to him uncomfortable. There is also the chance that I have been had.
The latter will be a sad one, as I do not have any plans to replace the bicycle any time soon.