Royal Mail stike action
The Communication Workers Union has announced four strike days on Friday 26th and Wednesday 31st August and then Thursday 8th and Friday 9th September. We expect our parcelforce collections service to be disrupted and our service support team may be busier than usual on the days after the strikes as we may need to make last minite shipping updates or hold deliveries for a day.
Our tracked UPS services will continue as usual and we recommend using an alternative courier if neccessary. You can bring repairs to our service counters in Manchester or London, Vauxhall. Alternatively you can bring repairs for delivery to us to any Wex Photo Video branch.
Repair turnaround times
Please be aware that while we are booking in as many repair items as we were in 2019, and many aspects of life have returned to normal, both COVID-19 and Brexit have had some adverse effects on our workshop capacity, repair turnaround times and customer service response times.
Fixation is continuing to repair and service photographic equipment and while customers can still receive rapid sensor cleaning and while-you-wait repairs at our service counters, we are aware that for more in-depth repairs that stay in our workshop for longer our current turnaround times are causing concerns with both new and returning repair customers. We are doing all we can to bring our service levels back to the fast repair service we were delivering before the pandemic.
How COVID-19 affected repairs
We have a large workshop of 20 technicians supported by a team of five administrators who all work in fairly close proximity to one another to complete a repair. At significant COVID peaks we reduced our workshop to six key technicans and one administrative support member who could continue to work at a safe distance from one another. Our demand for repairs never dropped to the same extent and this created a bottleneck in every area of the business from booking-in new repairs to producing estimates and shipping kit back to customers.
Outside of the UK COVID-19 affected both the demand for and supply of electronic components especially semiconductors which make the chips and processors present in every digital camera and many new lenses. This did not have an immediate impact as we hold a helathy stock of parts in our workshop but over time as these stocks in the UK and Europe were not replenished, some repairs have experienced unprecedented spare parts waiting times.
How Brexit has affected repairs
In addition to COVID affecting the supply chain of parts and our turnaround times, Brexit-related delays may also occur if your repair requires spare parts. All our spare parts ship to the UK from Japan, China and South Asia via depots in Europe. The movement of goods into the island of Great Britain is not as easy as it was before the UK left Europe in 2019 and our deliveries of spare parts are facing delays when crossing the channel. Deliveries being held at customs, and delays and queues at ports ahead of channel crossings make it almost impossible to accurately forecast when spare parts from outise the UK will arrive with us.
How is Fixation changing to improve our repairs
We have six new team members who have joined us in the workshop and some new roles to help make our workshop more efficient. While we train new team members our teams will be slower to reply to enquiries coming in but once eveyone is up to speed these new recruits will make a world of difference.
Customer Service: Sara and Jenice have recently joined the repairs team, Sara has joined us as Customer Service Manager, Jenice is joining the customer service team. They are both being trained up at the moment on our repairs administrative systems.
Workshop: Steven and Jaya are new starters in our workshop currently shadowing experienced technicians to learn repair processes and techniques for a range of cameras and lenses.
New role: Head of Repairs Regina has joined Fixation as Head of Repairs, a role that spans administrative and technical teams. She is currently working with the customer service team to make our processes more efficient and chipping in where needed to help booking in new repairs that have arrived.
New role: Stock Controller for Spare parts Tahir has joined us to look after spare parts ordering and stock control, this gives time back to our technicians who were managing spares orders as well as estimating and completing repairs. Once Tahir has our day to day orders running smoothly we will look at increasing our stock holding to minimise supply delays.
Coming Soon: Behind the scenes we have been working on our repair tracker to make it easier to track and respond to repair updates online and make more information about repairs available at all hours.
If you are looking to start a new repair then the best place to start is with our Online Repair Form https://www.fixationuk.com/complete-a-repair-form/
We appreciate your patience and support during these difficult times and we hope to be back up to capacity shortly.
Our current COVID-19 measures in place in Leeds, London and Manchester
Masks: We reommend that customers continue to wear masks when possible when entering our premises. Spare masks are available on request, alternatively we can bring sales items and repairs to the door if paid in advance.
When you visit please remember that we have the following measures in place:
• We recommend wearing a mask if possible when entering our premises
• Hand sanitiser stations are available
• Our showrooms and demo equipment are cleaned regularly
• All repairs are disinfected as a final stage of cleaning before return