Jude P. Morte / | July 12, 2007 00:00
Collective responsibility exemplarA frequent knock against dealer-level aftersales service is that it's impersonal, complex and costly, to the customer's chagrin. It often reaches the point that vehicle owners refuse to go to the casa (dealership) because they fear that they will be charged exorbitant prices due to processes (whether parts or service) that they do not understand.
This appalling trend didn't escape the people at Ford Group Philippines (FGP), which recently took a stand and upgrading everything that happens right after one purchases a Ford vehicle. Billed as FordService, the program is a proactive, interactive and frank customer care experience, whether before, during and after one buys a Ford vehicle from any dealership toting the Blue Oval logo.
Unique to FordService is Quality Care, a 12-step process unique to Ford that aims to deliver quality service to its customers. This starts when Ford's dealership customer relationship center personnel contact the vehicle owners and schedule appointment. Once the customers arrive at the dealerships, Ford's service advisors place the vehicles on the lifters where they go through vehicle inspection together with the customers, discuss the current condition of the units, furnish them with clear explanation on the services to be performed and complete the checklist with the owners. This is called the interactive reception process, a practice which is being rendered only at FordService and differentiates Ford from competition. "We realize that auto repair and servicing jargon can sometimes sound like a different language, so we always encourage customers to ask questions. We also give you the prices of the necessary parts and services right off the bat, which is the bottom line in when it comes to servicing. That way, it eliminates any doubt," said FGP parts and service assistant vice president Van Aniceto.
Furthermore, vehicles are serviced by well-trained technicians who conduct complete vehicle servicing in a timely and professional manner. Equipped with advanced tools and equipment, these experts provide customers with the highest quality of workmanship using genuine Ford parts. The FordService aftersales facility also features the latest technology ensuring customers that their cars are given the best possible treatment.
Lastly, customers are given follow-up calls three days after service has been completed. This customer after service contact is practiced diligently to solicit customers' feedback and sustain good relationship with them. "It's the Ford way of telling customers that we'll never leave them, even after you bought the vehicle or had it serviced," said Ford Global City (Fort Bonifacio, Taguig) service manager John Navarro.
As an added bonus to those who have frequently experienced blue ribbon service from the Blue Oval, FGP recently launched a major network-wide promotion on FordService. The promo (billed as Focus on FordService and runs from June 15-September 30, 2007) will give away a 2007 Ford Focus 1.6L 4-door Trend automatic to the grand prize winner, with accessories or service packages worth P30,000 each to be given out to consolation prize winners. Focus on FordService is open to all 1997-present Ford vehicle owners who avail of genuine Ford parts and accessories, general repair and diagnosis services, body and paint repair services and Ford Solutions products such as Extended Warranty, Scheduled Service Plan and Emergency Roadside Assistance. To qualify, the customer must present his receipt at a Ford dealership where he will be given one raffle stub for every P10,000 single-receipt purchase made.
FordService, as a whole, takes care of a Ford owner's expectations from the actual sale to aftersales service, with a personal touch that goes beyond the dealer-customer level. "It is how, if I were a customer, I would expect to be treated whenever I buy a vehicle from Ford. These simple things make the difference between a customer's smile and a frown," said FGP vice-president for customer service operations David Macasadia.