“We’re not there trying to rinse everything from each customer, but we’re there trying to make sure we do everything properly. If your customer service is right, you will automatically correct your overhead absorption rate.”
The Warwick site puts customer satisfaction ahead of profit, because Birchall believes the two are so intrinsically linked – the profit will follow if customers are happy.
Staff are encouraged not to rely on computers to run the business.
“Don’t let a computer tell you what today is going to be like, you should know that yourself already,” said Birchall.
“I never want a ‘computer says no’ moment in this business. Every customer should be greeted with open arms. The computer is there to report to you, but don’t let it run your business.”
How to base bonuses on customer service
The first job Birchall does in the morning is look at two statistics. What’s the customer service score and what’s the target for today?
Rybrook Warwick’s service adviser team plays a significant role in helping to hit its high overhead absorption figures.
The team members are experienced and customer service-focused. All CSI scores are broken down individually and can be attributed to each adviser.
Service advisers are bonused on customer service ratings. Every Friday, the customer services manager will look at every customer satisfaction survey which has been sent in and will put a name against it.
The three service advisers and customer service manager in the business are on 91%, 92% 95% and 96% satisfaction ratings from customers, based on a snapshot of 60 surveys each quarter. Rybrook Warwick has also just appointed another service adviser due to the growth the dealership is targeting this year.
Birchall took a chance and opened the latest customer satisfaction surveys to be sent in to the business (AM watched as the seal on the envelope was broken) and every single respondent had left comments about individuals in the business and rated every element to the highest level.
Rybrook Warwick recognises service advisers on the same level as the sales team, with equal opportunity to earn bonuses.
Birchall said: “A service adviser will see 20 times more customers in a week than a salesman.