Filofaxes, Quality Control, and The Planner World

So, I posted part of this as a reply to a post on the Philofaxy Facebook page, but I also wanted to post it here as a blog post to get thoughts, as well. So bear with me as I’m thinking “aloud” here about quality control, Filofaxes, ring mechanisms and general planner stuff.

Here goes…I’m beginning to think that there isn’t just one company at fault when it comes to binder issues such as ring mechanisms, and that it’s just quality control everywhere. I don’t thing the faulty issues can just be blamed on Pens and Leather or Goldspot or other retailers or necessarily Filofax themselves (although the customer service whether good or bad from each of these can certainly be blamed on them!)

I’ve had DayTimer, DayRunner, Franklin Covey and even Kate Spade planners with gapped and misaligned rings, too, but I think it is more often seen with we Filofax users because we actually get together and talk about it, or at least those of us who follow Philofaxy do. We take pride in our planners and even collect them–something I don’t see other planner users doing to the extent we do. In fact, I for one never even looked at the rings of my old binders from these other brands at the time of purchase, but I went back and sure enough, these issues were there in some.

I’d say the majority of people buy planners for personal or business use without much thought to the planner’s make and mechanism or whether or not it is in perfect working order. And while we also buy them for the same uses, we are a particular bunch who expects quality for our money (AS WE SHOULD). It may not necessarily bother the other buyers if there is something wrong as long as the binder still just works decently for the purpose they want, just as it actually may not bother many Filofax users who aren’t part of our groups. This could also account for Filofax’s 1% comment on the response from the petition several of us signed and sent to them. According to them, “Whilst there has been lots of comments about ring mechanism quality in the social community in recent months, we do believe that as a percentage of our total worldwide production, these issues amount to less than 1%.” (See full post on Philofaxy.)

We as Filofax users among the Philofaxy group see our planners differently. Don’t get me wrong, as I think we should see them differently and demand quality, but are we in the planner-buying minority as far as thinking about quality control? Maybe so, I have lots of friends who use different planners and have paid as much as we do for Filofaxes, but they see them as just a planner that is for the use it was made and don’t worry about whether or not the rings are misaligned or gapped.

Of course, I absolutely think we need to keep on Filofax about quality control, and we should also keep on the retailers about quality control and customer service, but I worry that we are in the minority about all of this, so I wonder know fast Filofax will work on the issue. I hope, as rest of you do, that they get if fixed quickly and correctly, and I do not blame anyone who gets upset at getting a defective binder. I do sincerely thank Steve and the rest of the team from Philofaxy for always making sure to keep us updated on talks with Filofax and actually making some progress, and I thank Kate from The Life of the Perpetual Student for getting the petition together. I hope we can eventually make some progress with them.

These are seriously just random midnight thoughts, but with all the issues with every Filofax retailer and Filofax themselves, it just got me thinking. None of this post is meant to anger or offend anyone, and I apologize if it does. I just wanted to get my thoughts out there. Personally, I will continue to use my Filofaxes as I do love them, and I like their range better than other planning systems. I would like to try maybe a Mulberry or Louis Vuitton organizer eventually, but for now Filofax still makes me happy.

Happy Filofaxing!

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  • Honestly, I have been using the same size planner for almost a year now, so I am ready to commit to something really nice in personal size, but hesitate due to reported Filofax issues.

  • Pat

    I totally agree on everything you said. Yes, if we pay the money (some even pay a LOT) we have the right to get perfect quality. But if there's some tiny tiny gap, which even won't bother while turning the pages? That would be fine with me. Sometimes I feel like when people now getting their new filofaxes they're kind of expecting fault rings. And maybe it would also help, if we wouldn't stuff our ff til the maximum with washis and stickers.. 😉