How does your customer reception function?

The reception area, the reception staff and the outside of the workshop are usually what the customer sees at your workshop. The person who takes the car into the workshop to be serviced or fixed also plays a part in creating a good impression. Whether the initial contact is made over the Internet, on the phone or in person, it’s important to gather as much information as possible about the customer, the vehicle and what needs resolving.

The reception staff must, in a friendly manner, gather as much information as possible about the customer (name, contact details), the vehicle (registration number and history), the job (what needs to be done) and other necessary details (e.g. regarding the guarantee or insurance), and suggest a time frame for performing the work.

Besides smoothing relations and making it easy for the customer to get their problem fixed, this will also rationalise procedures at the workshop later. Having as much information as possible makes it easier to diagnose the vehicle, prepare the work and rationalise the work flows.

Your customers should feel that they know what to expect and are leaving their car in safe, expert hands.

In more complex cases, it might be necessary for the customer to consult a service advisor. From the customer’s perspective, this often signals higher service costs. For this reason, it is important to explain to the customer why this consultation is necessary, how it will benefit them and whether it will cost them extra.

The service advisor’s role is to explain and present the various options for resolving the problem. The service advisor needs to explain the various alternatives from the customer’s perspective. In this context, it is important to focus on what the customer wants from his or her car. Would the customer benefit from buying a new car to reduce the need for future repairs, or should he or she be forewarned of the more extensive repairs that will probably be required?

Sit in the driver’s seat and imagine that you are the customer.