As you may have noticed, this week’s update is a bit different, and it’s not written by Konstantinos. For those who really just want the raw facts: No, things aren’t shipping yet, but we’re close.
Still here? Well, hi! I’m Helios, community manager for Eve.
You’re not Konstantinos!
Some of you may know me as that guy that keeps deleting your replies and archiving your topics. Of late, my job has mostly involved policing the forums and nagging Konstantinos to make sure every bit of information that can be shared with the community, is shared with the community. Soon I hope to be much busier guiding the crowd-development of new products and helping new users and the like. We’re not there yet, but we’re working on it. And this week is very different.
Like the rest of the community management team (it’s not a solo job, and I couldn’t do it without @nawthor and @iKirin), I work from home. That means that there are a few countries in between me and the Eve head office, and most of our communication happens through Slack and in regular conference calls with the team. With the investment hassle rounding up, we’ll need to get ready for future projects, and so off I flew to work closer with the team.
The delays in the investor payment mean that I’m not doing much in the community just yet, but that doesn’t mean that I -or anyone else on the team, for that matter- am sitting on my hands. There are regular conference calls in which Konstantinos updates us on what’s happening in China, and everyone is working hard to ensure we can move with as few delays or issues as possible once things are finalized.
So, what is happening in China?
That takes some time, because it requires people to meet up with one another. It’s not just Eve and investors, but also suppliers and our manufacturer who are involved in these talks. You’d think that in this day and age, international business could be conducted swiftly through phone calls and digital conferences. After all, that’s how I deal with my colleagues, most of the time. But Asian businesses (and Chinese in particular) still favor face-to-face meetings to conduct deals, and getting people from different companies in the same room takes some scheduling at times. Since his arrival in China, Konsta has been in a few such meetings, and everything is going well. Shipping-things-soon-well. How soon? Very. We’ll make more specific promises once things are more specifically confirmed.
Meanwhile, at the office…
Today I joined the team in checking every order for missing items or warranty replacements. Those should all be moving soon, but through delays and changes in partners some of the information is spread across a number of systems. Making sure we have everything in one place and ready for our shipping partners to work with could probably be automated and be 90% right. Manually it takes a lot more time, but it allows us to make sure things aren’t processed multiple times, overlooked, or done based on outdated information (like addresses). Each step takes us closer to getting every customer their products, and consolidating the order data also also allows us to get rid of some legacy systems that are currently making life harder for the support team.
Speaking of the support team…
That’s not the only thing that’s going on here. The team’s been supplying our investors, suppliers and manufacturers with the information they need, and a lot of time is spent handling support tickets. And that’s not just the people who were hired to handle support tickets. Designer? Support tickets. Product manager? Support tickets. Financial administration? Support tickets.
We are aware that right now, diagnostics take a little longer than we would like, but the main delay is with anything in need of shipping. Missing items and warranty replacements are high on our list of priorities, but the fact is that shipping anything takes money. With that issue almost resolved, we’re almost ready to close a lot of support tickets, some of which customers have been waiting on for very long.
The situation still sucks!
We know. And we’re doing what we can to make it better. There is light at the end of the tunnel, and we keep heading towards it. The alternative is to give up, and then everybody loses.
So what now?
The team continues to work hard each day to make sure we can move forward.
The goal is to make sure everyone receives their V and accessories.
That every defective item is repaired or replaced.
That every refund gets processed.
That the community can go back to crowd-developing awesome tech.
That Eve can be better at everything we do in the future, so that none of this repeats itself.
I’ve heard it talked about in conference calls, and now I’m seeing it every day in person.
But you didn’t talk about that one thing I was curious about!
You’re free to ask your questions in this topic. That said, if your question has been asked repeatedly and you still don’t have an answer yet, there may simply not be an answer just yet.
And as more things are confirmed, we’ll have more news for you, of course.
We’re almost there, people. Have an awesome weekend!