Acer has completed an upgrade to its local support facilities, in line with the company's local growth. It has expanded the physical size of its support centre in Johannesburg, while increasing call-centre capacities and parts-holding.
"This upgrade to Acer's service capacity comes in view of the 60% increase in notebook sales experienced by Acer between 2005 and 2006, and continuing into 2007," says Graham Braum, country manager of Acer SA.
He says that Acer continues to experience strong growth above and beyond what is to be expected from overall market growth for notebook computers.
Acer's local support infrastructure has now been upgraded to take on an additional 600 square meters of floor space and the total area dedicated to service is now 1800 square meters.
"The new facility offers increased space for Acer's call-centre, service engineers and a new walk-in service centre with comfortable booths where customers can sit with engineers and talk through the problems they may be experiencing," explains Braum.
He says that Acer has also increased its local spare parts holding to $2-million dollars, or about R14-million locally.
Braum adds that over 50% of service conducted locally is on out-of-warranty products. People in South Africa tend to use technology for longer periods of time and it is important for local vendors to support these customers with a walk-in centre where they can have their machines fixed. South Africans are also very wary of service levels and they have certain levels of expectation.
Acer has also implemented a new customer support system called CSS. This integrates Acer's call and repair centres with its spare parts depot and third-party couriers and engineers.
"When customers call in, Acer is able to process their service needs end-to-end," continues Braum. "Problems can be checked against a knowledge base, diagnosed, and hardware can be booked in. Couriers are automatically dispatched to collect hardware from customers, parts are automatically ordered and the depot's stock replenished from the European hub, making for the quickest possible resolution to customer problems."
Acer's new support facility is already operational and accepting support requests from customers.