Increased Transparency and Communications from Service Advisor Elevates Customer Satisfaction, J.D. Power Finds

Automotive Press Releases Monday August 19, 2019 11:47
Bangkok--19 Aug--J.D. Power

Satisfaction is higher among after-sales service customers in Thailand when elements that reinforce a good experience are executed well, according to the J.D. Power 2019 Thailand Customer Service Index (CSI) StudySM, released today. These include: giving precise service times at the beginning of service; updating customers about the service status; and providing thorough explanations of the work performed and charges at the end. Overall satisfaction is 831 (on a 1,000-point scale), an increase from 826 in 2018.

The study also finds that a higher proportion of customers (20% in 2019 vs. 16% in 2018) indicate that the service time experienced is better than expected. Satisfaction among vehicle owners whose service time is better than expected is at 858, while satisfaction for those whose service time is worse than expected is 731. A higher percentage of customers (85% in 2019 vs. 62% in 2018) are also kept updated about their vehicle status. Improvements also are seen in post-service explanation about the work performed (98% in 2019 vs. 97% in 2018) and service charges (97% in 2019 vs. 96% in 2018).

"Customers are increasingly more sensitive to the time it takes to service their vehicles," said Siros Satrabhaya, Regional Director for Thailand at J.D. Power. "Dealers and automakers play a pivotal role in making the on-the-ground experience more efficient by improving operating procedures and processes to shorten service time. At the same time, dealers should be encouraged to go the extra mile. Washing and vacuuming, for example, would add great value to the quality of service."

More customers whose cars were completely serviced within the hour rose to 45% in 2019 from 36% in 2018. However, only 67% of customers said their car was washed and vacuumed post-service, down from 69% last year.

Following are additional key findings of the 2019 study:
  • More awareness of internet scheduling tools: Among customers who did not make appointments using the internet or apps, almost one-fourth (24%) said they were not aware that appointments could be made via these channels; an improvement from 36% in 2018. However, 23% of these customers found the online booking system difficult to use, up from 14% in 2018.
  • Addressing customer requirements at facilities in Bangkok and beyond the capital: For customers who reside in the regions outside the capital, perks that help satisfaction improve the most are free meals (+31 points above the factor average); a cafe on premises (+31); and tablets or video games on offer (+22). For customers in Bangkok, availability of tablets or video games (+12) and devices with internet access (+8) have the greatest influence.
  • Empathise with customers when recommending additional work: Fewer customers (29% in 2019) accept recommendations for additional work (down from 33% in 2018). Customers who accepted recommendations had higher satisfaction (839 points) versus those who did not (830 points). Service advisors must avoid being pushy and instead suggest only additional work that enhances customer satisfaction.
Study Rankings

Nissan ranks highest in after-sales customer satisfaction with an overall satisfaction score of 838 and performs well on three of the five factors: service advisor, vehicle pick-up and service quality. Isuzu ranks second with a score of 837 and Toyota ranks third with a score of 836.

The J.D. Power 2019 Thailand Customer Service Index (CSI) Study measures overall satisfaction among vehicle owners who visited an authorised service center for maintenance or repair work during the first 12 to 36 months of ownership, based on five factors (in order of importance): service quality (27%); vehicle pick-up (20%); service facility (18%); service initiation (18%); and service advisor (18%).

Now in its 20th year, the study is based on responses from 3,050 new-vehicle owners who purchased their vehicle between February 2016 and June 2018 and took their vehicle for service to an authorised dealer or service center between February 2018 and June 2019. The study was fielded from February through June 2019.

The study also includes the Net Promoter Score(R) (NPS)[1], which measures customers' likelihood to recommend their vehicle brand on a 0-10 scale.

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