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AM Awards 2014 – Retailer of the Year: Arnold Clark Automobiles

Arnold Clark MD Eddie Hawthorne, centre, with Sophie Raworth and Black Horse’s Chris Sutton
Arnold Clark MD Eddie Hawthorne, centre, with Sophie Raworth and Black Horse’s Chris Sutton

 

The financial results for Arnold Clark Automobiles have been strong, with turnover rising steadily and pre-tax profit climbing quickly.

The group operates 24 franchises across 190 sites and has a very clear business plan, communicated internally and externally, focused on a ‘one business’ approach to car retailing, based on the customer’s retail journey.

       
  AM Awards 2014 winner logo    
  Retailer of the Year    
       

It has clear objectives for growth, customer retention and satisfaction and is enjoying 3% return on sales.

Arnold Clark has developed its IT systems and has a new CRM core database based on one platform with an aim to help staff uphold the group’s  “Treating Customers Fairly” policy. All customer issues are logged, monitored and quickly addressed. CSI results are translated into “star ratings” and published live on the intranet.

Its manufacturer customer satisfaction scores are high across the group and mystery shop scores have improved from 69.75% to 76.33% in the past three years.

The group has an in-house training facility, which also offers training for external customers. Its own daily rental fleet gives it unique flexibility in managing its used and demonstrator car stocks.

It is a business focused on delivering real price efficiencies to its customer base. One example is a “value range” of used cars priced up to £5,000, which come with an MoT, 60-day warranty and a 14-day money-back promise.

It has also sourced parts directly from alternative manufacturers and offers this lower-cost service to customers seeking to cut their costs.

The Group’s “Treating Customers Fairly” policy is designed to make it easy for customers to complain and all staff are aware of this.

The group has good internal communications, with newsletters for all staff. A more detailed version for managers includes league tables of individual performance.

Also shortlisted: Barnetts Volkswagen; Holdcroft Motor Group; Listers Group; Peter Vardy; Swansway Group.

Previous winners: Lifestyle Europe (2011 ); Arnold Clark Automobiles (2012); Arnold Clark Automobiles (2013).

Category sponsored by Black Horse.



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