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March 12, 2013

Aiming for Technical Leadership in the Seiko Worldwide Service Network

Hong Kong

On March 12 and 13, the 7th Seiko Certified Watchmaker Exam was held at Seiko Hong Kong office.

The Seiko Certified Watchmaker Program (SCW) has been set up as a global certification program for top quality watchmakers in the Seiko Worldwide Service Network. The objective of this program is to ensure technical superiority by bestowing the certification on qualified watchmakers.

The examination consists of a practical exam to assess skill level and a written exam to assess knowledge of high level watch repair practices.

Since September 2010, the examination has been held a total of 7 times in the Netherlands, the Middle East and Hong Kong. To date, 14 watchmakers have been certified under the SCW Program.

The 7th SCW was held in Hong Kong and 7 watchmakers from 6 countries participated. The exam started with a written exam. When people think of a “written exam,” they usually imagine a room full of silent and serious examinees thinking hard to answer the questions. However, it is totally different in SCW. As the exam is held in English, most of the watchmakers participated with a translator by their side. Therefore, from the start till the end, the room was flooded with voices of translators explaining to the watchmakers in their native languages. It seemed many watchmakers were stuck on difficult questions, but they were working on it diligently with the translator.

The practical exam however was held in a solemn atmosphere, in contrast to the lively atmosphere of the written exam. Since the watchmakers are required to find all the faults that are built-in to a watch and make repairs within a limited time, they were concentrating hard to find the faults. It seemed the watchmakers were working under pressure, but all of them managed to find some faults and submit their repaired watches in time. We are sure this experience gave them a chance to review their daily working procedures and provided motivation to take their service skills to the next level.

(SCW Certified Watchmaker, Mr. Mohammed Shafeek of Al-Hussaini & Al-Yahya Investment Group, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)

The Seiko Certified Watchmaker exam is the most recent example of how Seiko maintains Brand quality, not only in the manufacturing of the product but also in their outlook towards after sales service. Only luxury Watch brands are adopting such vision in the field of Customer Service Quality. It is amazing that Seiko methodology in the Service standards has lifted to such a level that competitors cannot reach.

It is quite hard to achieve the Seiko Certified Watchmaker award, which requires a deep knowledge in horology and skill demonstrated through a series of examinations both in theory and practices. Indeed, for me it is a great pleasure being one of the Seiko Certified Watchmakers. It is true that studying in deep on horology is challenging but it is also exciting and awesome. No doubt, Seiko brought me up to this level and Certification will certainly motivate me for a promising future.

A Certified Watchmaker should support his Firm to upgrade the Service quality to the Seiko standard. A Certified Watchmaker should put his entire ability and efforts to the Brand loyalty by serving in his field and he must look always for new sources to enhance his talent and update his skills to meet the challenges in the new era.