For Your Staff: Repair Counter
Take-In Tips, Part 5
Clearly communicating with your customer and your
bench jeweler is the final link in good take-in procedures
Clearly explaining each aspect of the take-in process to customers
is critical in protecting your business. Communicate the importance
of inspection, identification, valuation and liability verbally
and by the way you handle the jewelry during take-in.
Does the customer understand the repair? Jewelers understand
terms such as "half shank" and "retip," but
customers may not. The level of explanation necessary will vary
among customers, but at least offer the information. Draw a quick
sketch or show the jewelry under magnification. Offering this
type of information can avert a customer questioning later whether
you approved unnecessary repairs.
Also be sure the customer fully understands risks associated
with repairs. Gemstones, especially delicate ones, may be damaged
even with careful handling. Patinas and textures on certain jewelry
may not be duplicated easily. Previous repairs can make a seemingly
routine repair a very risky procedure (see photograph). Explaining
this to customers is your best defense against everything from
bad referrals to legal action. Even if the customer seems uninterested,
clearly communicate the risks and your liability policy.
Communication with your bench jeweler is important also. This
is especially true concerning repair options and risks because
these can make or break a relationship with a customer.
If the jewelry requires special handling, a discussion with your
bench jeweler can resolve certain problems and emphasize others.
Bench jewelers often have information that will help your
customer decide how or whether they wish to proceed
with the repair.
In fact, knowing when to communicate with your bench jeweler
can be as important as communicating with the customer. Good
inspection and identification habits will guide you.
by arthur Skuratowicz, G.J.G., N.J.A. & Julie
Nash, G.J.G., A.M.
Arthur Skuratowicz and Julie Nash operate Anton Nash LLC,
an independent jewelry appraisal and consulting company in Colorado
||This white gold, diamond and synthetic sapphire
ring (circa 1935) has numerous cracks, some of which were repaired
previously. Despite the serious nature of the cracks, they aren't
eye-visible. The take-in process for this ring required pointing
out the cracks under magnification and consulting a bench jeweler
about the risks associated with repair. The store's liability
policy also was a key part of the discussion with the customer
Copyright © 1999 by Bond Communications.