Rolex world service
The watchmakers in the Rolex World Service workshops are specially trained by the company so as to ensure the quality and consistency of servicing operations worldwide. They perform various types of procedures in adherence with Rolex standards, thereby guaranteeing the performance of the brand’s watches over time. Moreover, the availability of parts and labour is assured for every watch for at least 35 years following its withdrawal from the catalogue.
Exceptional historic watches, whose refurbishment requires specific skills, are handled by the Restoration Atelier in Geneva.
QUALITY AND RELIABILITYA visionary entrepreneur, Hans Wilsdorf was convinced that every Rolex watch should be reliable and durable. This philosophy gave rise to the Oyster case, a paragon of robustness that offers optimum protection for the watch’s movement. Hans Wilsdorf’s foresight also led him to promptly establish a network of dedicated after-sales service workshops in the countries where the brand was present. The initiative allowed Rolex to guarantee that each watch could receive the best possible servicing at any time and so preserve its excellent performance and impeccable finish. The workshops operated by Rolex World Service fulfil the mission of ensuring the exceptional durability and reliability of Rolex watches and providing high-quality service to the brand’s customers.
To guarantee service quality, all the watchmakers working at Rolex after-sales service centres have followed training given by the brand. This ensures that the same quality of servicing is provided in all of the centres around the world.
Each after-sales service workshop meets the standards set by Rolex with respect to the quality of its infrastructure and equipment as well as the expertise of its personnel. For maximum efficiency, after-sales service procedures are planned for during product development so that new watches can be serviced easily and with optimal results.
Following maintenance in a Rolex World Service workshop, each watch also benefits from a two-year international service guarantee covering the parts and labour. As a result, there is no limit to how long a Rolex watch can keep working, being handed down from one generation to the next, and living several lives.
The availability of parts and labour is assured for every watch for at least 35 years following its withdrawal from the catalogue. At the end of this period, if parts are no longer available, they can be recreated by the Restoration Atelier.
A WORLDWIDE PRESENCERolex World Service is present on all continents thanks to service centres – watchmaking workshops that are based at official retailers of the brand or the regional affiliates’ offices. These workshops each have one or more Rolex-certified watchmakers, who alone are authorized to carry out after-sales servicing on watches produced by the brand. They uphold Rolex’s aim of providing exceptional service at all times and no matter the condition of the watch. Maintenance is carried out according to guidelines and the brand’s requirements – just as in manufacturing, the servicing of a timepiece requires the highest level of expertise. Depending on the age of the watch, servicing takes place either at an official retailer, at an affiliate, or at Rolex World Headquarters in Geneva.
IN-HOUSE TRAININGIn 2018, the brand inaugurated the Rolex Training Centre in Geneva. Designed as a place of exchange, the facility offers young apprentices and Rolex employees optimal conditions for learning. Focused on the future, it evolves constantly to take account of the latest advances in teaching and technology.
Rolex provides an eighteen-month programme – Rolex Watchmaking Training – at its affiliates. Once this is complete, the watchmaker is able to carry out full servicing on Oyster movements.
All the watchmakers working in the brand’s after-sales service workshops are trained in-house. These Rolex watchmakers – at least one in every workshop – regularly follow specific courses allowing them to maintain their level of expertise and to keep abreast of changes to the brand’s products and techniques.
A VARIETY OF SERVICESThe Rolex World Service workshops offer different types of servicing operations. A full service, for example, involves the complete overhaul of the watch movement, case and bracelet. Specific operations are also available, such as adjusting the length of the bracelet or refinishing the case. At most Rolex points of sale, watchmakers trained by the brand offer a number of same-day services that can be carried out on site.
The servicing of a Rolex watch comprises several steps requiring the use of specific tools and instruments that are tested and sometimes even developed by the brand. Once the watch has been received, assessed and the customer has approved the service estimate, the watchmaker begins work by separating the bracelet from the case and delicately removing the movement, still fitted with its dial and hands. From that point on, the movement, case and bracelet follow separate servicing paths.
The dial and the hands are detached from the movement, which is itself completely dismantled. Each component is carefully examined to determine whether it still meets Rolex requirements – if this is not the case, it is replaced with a new part from the manufacture in Bienne, where Rolex movements are produced. All components are cleaned in an ultrasonic bath to remove all traces of impurities, before being dried. The movement is reassembled piece by piece in a set order, and lubrication is applied. After making the first adjustments to the precision of the movement, the watchmaker then refits the dial and hands.
The case is also disassembled, and the parts, whether made from Oystersteel, 18 ct gold or 950 platinum, are individually re-polished or satin-finished by hand. These delicate finishing processes, which require great dexterity, restore the case’s sheen and lustre, whilst removing any marks or scratches. The seals are replaced, then the crystal, bezel and middle case are reassembled.
The bracelet receives a similar treatment to the case. Each link is painstakingly polished or satin-finished according to its original finish. The bracelet is then thoroughly cleaned.
The watchmaker gently puts the movement back into the case and measures its accuracy once again, making any adjustments necessary for it to achieve the expected chronometric performance. This is followed by a precision test lasting a minimum of 24 hours. Next, the case is pressure-tested in water. With the waterproofness test passed and the bracelet refitted, the watch is ready for a final control – its rate and functions are checked, and its aesthetics verified to ensure an impeccable finish.
At the end of the process, the timepiece is placed in a pouch designed to protect it while it is not being worn, or during travel. The watch benefits from a two-year international guarantee covering the parts and labour.
THE RESTORATION ATELIERExceptional historic watches are restored exclusively in Geneva, at the Restoration Atelier, by Master Watchmakers who are specially trained in collectors’ timepieces. Due to the very specific nature of their work, the Master Watchmakers in the Restoration Atelier combine on a daily basis in-depth historical research with traditional methods and state-of-the-art techniques. Components that no longer meet Rolex’s quality criteria can be restored or perfectly recreated using techniques of the period. From control of the inherent risks of working on the timepieces to complete traceability of the work realized, each restoration service is executed according to a set of rigorous principles. The restored watch is returned to its owner in a special presentation box, accompanied by a personalized booklet.
Rolex World Service
The Restoration Atelier
ROLEX AFTER-SALE SERVICES - A PHILOSOPHY OF EXCELLENCE
Rolex watches are designed and built to last. Hans Wilsdorf instilled a philosophy of perpetual excellence on which the brand has forged its reputation. From the outset, the founder of Rolex established a network of watchmaking workshops around the world, tasked with ensuring that all of the brand’s watches could receive the best possible servicing and so preserve their excellent technical performance and a pristine appearance. The watchmakers in the Rolex World Service workshops are specially trained by the company so as to ensure the quality and consistency of servicing operations worldwide