I have mixed feelings regarding my Apple service experience, but i have two recommendations:
1) Have a method where the owner of the machine (the person who controls the apple ID used to initiate the maintenance) can claim the machine. I had the QR code for the drop off appointment, i could have logged into my Apple account. (I did not have another Apple device with me, so i could not have done your Apple-specific two factor proof).
2) If it is the case that associates cannot easily access the initial work authorization, you should add to your pick-up note that one should bring the initial work authorization just in case of conflicts (described below). I do not live close to your store and returning home for it was time consuming.
As far as my experience:
The new feature where the battery asks for service in the menu-bar battery menu is better than my previous experience of having to check the system report. This time, the battery notified me that service was needed before i was experiencing problems that interrupted my use. I suppose that's good.
You provided a complimentary replacement of the case where the keys are because i'd worn the A & command key. (It's the keychord for opening my universal shortcut, Alfred.) That was very kind. Thank you.
On the other hand,
* I had a frustrating experience with chat-support prior to dropping it off. I was asking whether it was likely it could be repaired while we were waiting. After running through diagnostic steps, and being assured that everything would be explained before anything was done to the machine (not my concern or question), i finally got an answer to my question -- that likely it could be fixed while we waited. I wish the assistant could have just said they didn't know, if that was the case. It certainly took a long time to get my question answered -- incorrectly. I would have preferred a "I can't possibly know without going through full diagnostics" at the beginning, and i wouldn't have spent the near hour going through all the diagnostics that could be done while i was finishing a project, hoping that after the next step i could get a simple answer.
* My spouse dropped the machine off. She's not the owner of the machine; i gave her the QR code for the appointment. When it was time to pick up, i went in with the QR code. Since she had dropped it off, she needed to come in. Thank heavens she had happened to make the drive with me: it was a whim that she was available. However, it would have been much more helpful if i, the owner of the machine could have logged into an interface with the Apple ID so you could see the name associated with the Apple ID that authorized the work was mine.
For reasons that are none of your business, coming in was very problematic for my spouse. She did express her displeasure vividly, and your employee remained fairly professional.
* However -- perhaps because there was tension in the air? -- the employee assisting me presented me with a bill that was $378 larger than the work authorization. When i expressed surprise, the employee insisted i present the email with the original work authorization. This was at home. Thus, i needed to drive home, and then make the return trip with the device i use to access the email account with the work authorization. I would recommend that you advise people to bring that when you remind them of their photo id, if it is truly unavailable to the associate.
* I was surprised that i did not need to present the work authorization when i returned, but was speedily assured that the amount would be deducted. It did seem that the override was hard to acquire for the associate who was assigned to me after the assurance.
I'm glad it's a grey and wet wet day and i really don't want to be working outside. Because, ugh, i don't want to be working outside. SO driving around for hours is ... OK.
But, new bottom and battery, and then i busted the screen a year and a half ago so that's fairly new, and the keyboard is now new (and whatever remains had been replaced after the original machine from early 2016 kept crashing). I hope it continues to be useful for a very long time. And maybe stable?
My dad had complained to me last week about a phone tree nightmare he experienced. On his third time through, when the human was about to make the same transfer that disconnected the previous two times, he explained what happened. The agent said, yup, that's how it works, and off he went to limbo again. He and i shared some other similar stories. The next day, over lunch, i shared the stories with Christine and we talked about why -- we could identify that generally the employee executing the ritual of insanity quite likely didn't have the agency to even warn the customer. Scripts, recorded calls, employer demands could fence otherwise creative and compassionate people into a box. And the "broken system" might have some hidden functions (counts of disconnected calls used to fix insufficient lines, perhaps). Christine noted it was up to the customer to complain to fix the thing. Thus, my long missive above.
Knowing people who do quality assurance, knowing user experience and systems analysis are techniques people use to fix issues, it irks me to do it "for free." Also knowing the slow process for change -- over-extended teams, etc -- i know change can take a long time, and the complaints help move problems to the front of the queue. So, even if it seems pointless, it might be helping.