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Ford puts focus on customer service

Ford has told its dealers to renew their focus on customer service. This move comes as 20% of dealers are reporting a loss, with return on salesat 1.5% managing director of Ford of Britain Nigel Sharp said the network was still lacking consistency in customer standards.

“We’re not consistent enough and tuned in enough to customer standards, which are changing.

“For example, a lot of customers contact dealers electronically now rather than by other mediums and we need to be faster in our response,” Sharp added.

He said Ford realises consumers have a choice in cars and wants customers to opt for its offering over others. “Plenty of manufacturers have good products. We want the standards in service to go with them.”

Ford is currently revising the way it measures customer satisfaction in the network with a new tool expected by the end of next year.

Sharp said it would introduce electronic customer satisfaction rather than “the slow and rather cumbersome snail mail we’re using at the moment”.

The carmaker suspended use of its existing customer satisfaction measure while the new tool was implemented. But this has since been delayed and Sharp said removal of the satisfaction measure was a mistake and would be reinstated until the new method is introduced.

Ford is currently infilling smaller open points, for example Spalding in Lincolnshire, which has been vacant for a few years.

It has opened 30-40 of these sites in the last 18 months, although some have been replacements.

There are a few major open points. In those cases, Sharp said they are in talks with potential franchisees to fill the positions.

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