Tips For Getting Better ServiceSep 28, 2000 Write an essay on this topic.
When dealing with your auto repair facility, there is one simple thing to remember: The Golden Rule. Do to others as you wish them to do to you. Basically what this comes down to is treat your auto service provider with the respect that you would like to be treated with. You will be surprised how far this will go. For the past several years, I have been working as a Service Manager for a new car dealership. I speak with approximately 100 different customers every day. In my time working there, I have learned many things. But the most significant is that I only remember two kinds of customers... the Really Good Ones and the REALLY BAD ones.
By being a good customer I do not mean that you should hang on every word the service advisors tell you, complete every repair noted on the inspection, or bring in a plate of homemade cookies on your visits (though it does happen and we appreciate it). Treating someone with the respect that he or she has treated you with will go a long way. Every day I speak to at least one customer who tells me, "I know what YOU guys are up to!" or "I saw the 20/20 program and know how you guys operate." These comments will get you nowhere fast and makes an unpleasant experience both for you and the facility. I'm not saying that you should completely let your guard down, but if you cannot develop at least some sense of trust for your service facility, there's no reason you should be going there. Conversely if you contend that you cannot find a reliable, reputable service center anywhere, maybe should take a deeper look at yourself.
One of the major complaints that service providers hear is that it takes too long to get work on your vehicle completed. Sometimes this can mean leaving your car there all day long just for an oil change. I agree that being without your vehicle all day for an oil change is just ridiculous. But many people will tell you that that has been their experience and more often than not it is true. Here are a couple of tips for forming a good relationship with your facility and getting your car finished quicker:
1.) Your car will be finished only as soon the service facility wants it to be completed. If you are a pleasant, respectful patron, your car will be finished quicker. If are an unpleasant, angry customer, the service facility really has nothing to lose by making you wait longer.
2.) People go into business for one reason: TO MAKE MONEY. That is the bottom line. But that does NOT mean that the facility is being dishonest with you. Keep their point of view in mind.
3.) Be available for communication with the facility. When your car is being repaired, if possible leave a pager or cell phone number. Or a number where you will definitely be at, not may be at. Easy communication will make getting your car finished in a timely manner as easy for the facility as possible. A repair shop CANNOT legally proceed a repair until you have okayed it.
4.) Never refer to diagnosing a problem as, "just looking at it." It may sound funny, but auto repair technicians can be very sensitive about that sort of thing. Many of these men and women have dedicated all of their adult lives to learning a trade. And you degrading their work is just like a slap in the face. If a repair shop diagnoses a problem, and you decide not to have it completed, there will be a diagnosis charge by the hour. Their time is money. Let's face it, if it was "just looking at it", then you could do it yourself.
5.) Do not call the facility every ten minutes to check the status of your vehicle. Most people in the auto repair business work on an hourly basis with a commission incentive. Since this is the case, they will usually call you as soon as the problem is diagnosed or your vehicle is finished. That means that they won't get paid until you pay them. I'm not trying say that a curious call is inappropriate, but it can be a very busy job and persistent calls will only annoy.
6.) Always ask for a time estimate when dropping the car off at the facility. If none can be given (yes, there are circumstances), leave a number where you can definitely be reached. If that is not possible, ask when a good time for you to call them would be.
The best advice that I can give to anyone is to just use common sense. If you walk in angry and screaming, donít expect that people are going to be too anxious to satisfy you. If a facility thinks that you cannot be satisfied, then they are not going to try too hard to accomplish what they feel is the impossible. A pleasant demeanor and a smile will ultimately go a long way.
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