IPEVO’s RMA Journey Part One: Leveling the Education Playing Field for Rural Schools in Taiwan

Have you ever wondered what happened to those RMA (Return Merchandise Authorization) products that were returned to their manufacturers? More often than not they will be refurbished and resold if they are still in good working condition. Otherwise, they will be sent straight to the recycling bin. This is how we usually deal with our returned document cameras too, however, we feel strongly that we ought to do something more meaningful. So with this in mind, our Taiwan office piloted an RMA giveaway program last November.

The giveaway program is only opened to rural schools in Taiwan, and for those eligible schools that had their applications approved, we’d send them free refurbished document cameras. By doing so, we hope their education playing field could be leveled as they gained free access to educational tools that are normally beyond their reach due to the lack of fundings.

So, instead of sending these returned document cameras down the usual path, we took them on a whole new journey. Come check it out!

1. Testing and sorting

To begin, our RMA team started out by pooling the returned document cameras (from different countries) to our centralized warehouse in Taiwan.

Pooled returned document cameras stacked up in our warehouse.

They were then passed on to the QC (Quality Control) team for testing and sorting. A rigorous and stringent testing process had been put in place for the inspection so as to ensure that they met the same functional standards as new IPEVO products. And those returned document cameras that passed this test were then certified as refurbished.

Checking the focal distance of a returned Ziggi-HD Plus document camera.
Making sure the buttons on Ziggi-HD Plus work as normal.
Positioning a returned P2V document camera for an image clarity test.
Checking out the image clarity of P2V.

Next, the refurbished document cameras are passed on to the logistics team for repackaging.

2. Repackaging

Upon receiving the refurbished document cameras, the first thing the logistics team did was entering their serial numbers to our system for record-keeping.

Entering the serial number of a refurbished Ziggi-HD Plus to our system.

After that, the team attached a simple note, expressing our wishes and hopes that this simple gesture from us would help level their education playing field in one way or the other, on each box of the refurbished document cameras.

A simple note was attached on each box.

And before the refurbished document cameras were ready to be sent out, the team had to tie up a few loose ends. They had to make sure that each refurbished document camera was packed into an IPEVO postal bag with a correct shipping label pasted on it.

3. Dispatching

While packing the refurbished document cameras into bags and sticking the correct shipping labels on them might sound simple and straightforward, things started to get complicated when the quantity was in hundreds.

Hundreds and hundreds of refurbished document cameras waiting to be packed.
Packing them into postal bags and sticking shipping labels.

But thanks to the meticulous members and collective effort of the logistics team, everything was ready in just a few days.

Hooray! It’s all done!

And finally, they were all heading to the rural schools!

On their way to the rural schools.

In the next blog of IPEVO’s RMA Journey, we’re going to follow the refurbished document cameras on their journey into their “new found life”. So stay tuned to know more.