Tuesday, August 01, 2017

J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Index for Mass Market Cars 2017 - Toyota is champion, Mitsubishi second and Mazda third, and Honda comes in last!

Okayyyyyyy.. J.D. Power, the well known impartial organisation that conduct customer satisfaction surveys have announced that Toyota is the best in customer service satisfaction for the second year running! This is followed by Mitsubishi and then Mazda with Honda, yes, Honda coming in last among the non-premium mass market passenger car makers in Malaysia. Congratulations is in order to all of the three for making their customers feel like the are very appreciated. Aside from that, let me just state again that Honda has come in last. Even Volkswagen is up by a whole lot from 2016. 

So according to J.D.Power, customers want to be viewed as individuals with their own unique needs and that Malaysian customers to service centres are also critical of the time factor when sending in their cars for servicing - they expect prompt service as they feel that with a demanding and fast paced lifestyle, their time is precious. And there's also more good stuff too. 

The report also states that both Malaysian local brands - Proton and Perodua are up in terms of overall quality of service, if not ranking as they still maintain their respective positions of being slightly below the industry average. I see huge improvements made by Volkswagen and also Ford, whilst still below average have gained some points. I would now give Volkswagen Passenger Cars Malaysia a pat on the back for this comeback. 

Missing from the list this year is actually Kia and Hyundai. Quite strange as their track record overseas is pretty strong. Most likely not enough of their customers participated in the survey this year (it happens). 

The biggest loser is Honda. Why is this so you ask? My explanation is that they are selling so many cars that their exisiting service centres cannot cope with the inflow of cars that require servicing. When you sell 100,000 vehicles or target to sell more and more cars, the after sales aspect of the whole set up must grow in tandem with the amount of cars sold. It seems this has not happened. 

I personally have heard through the automotive grapevine that this could happen, and I suppose it is happening. This is quite similar to the issue faced by Volkswagen Malaysia awhile back when they sold a heck of a lot of cars and then faced that DSG-gate here in Malaysia without having enough facilities and spare part stocks to handle the issue reasonably. 

But yes, Honda is not Volkswagen. Their cars have been pretty reliable from the outset. And their cars are also darn good looking for the price you pay. I believe this dip in customer satisfaction happened because there are just too few hands to handle the onslaught of customers. They NEED more service outlets in order to catch up with the volume of cars that they are selling. This survey clearly states so. 

With customer after sales now recognised as one helluva important aspect in purchasing a car, surveys like J.D. Power are essential for all parties to make a decision when purchasing a car. 

More diagrams below as well as the press release:

I have put here last year's chart right below for you to have a look and compare. 

Auto Service Center Efficiency Leads to Higher Satisfaction, J.D. Power Finds
Toyota Ranks Highest in Customer Satisfaction for Second Consecutive Year

KUALA LUMPUR: 1 Aug. 2017 — The efforts of service advisors to efficiently meet their customers’
needs at service centers has a significant positive effect on customer satisfaction, according to the J.D.
Power 2017 Malaysia Customer Service Index (CSI) Study, SM released today.
Overall customer service satisfaction—measured on a 1,000-point scale—increases this year to 761
from 751 in 2016. This improvement is apparent across all factors: service quality; service initiation;
vehicle pick-up; service advisor; and service facility. Service initiation improves the most (+15 points)
to 762.
“Customers want to be viewed as individuals with unique needs,” said Muhammad Asyraf Bin
Mustafar, country head of Malaysia for J.D. Power. “With a demanding and fast-paced modern
lifestyle, Malaysian car owners do not have time to waste when sending their cars for service. It is a
dealership’s responsibility—with the support of professional service advisors—to ensure exceptional
service that meets customers’ expectations. Moreover, every interaction with customers—from
scheduling an appointment to after-service calls—has a profound effect on customer satisfaction.”

When customers are provided explanations of work prior to service, satisfaction increases by 49 points,
compared with when explanations are not provided (768 vs. 719, respectively). Furthermore,
satisfaction among customers whose advisors paid attention to their service details is far higher than
among those who did not (764 vs. 676, respectively). The study also finds that satisfaction among
customers whose advisors are completely focused on their needs is 765, which is 80 points higher than
among those whose advisor is not completely focused on their specific needs.

Encouragingly this year, the percentage of customers who completed the handover process in less than
15 minutes has increased to 62% from 58% in 2016. A development that notably helps improves the
customer experience in-store.

The study finds that satisfaction among customers who received an explanation of work after the
completion of service has risen by 52 points, compared with those who did not receive any explanation
(763 vs. 711, respectively). In addition, the percentage of instances in which service charges are
explained post-service has increased to 91% from 88% last year.

Following are additional key findings of the study:
 Malaysian national brands show improvement: The overall customer service index among
the Malaysian national brands averages 756, an increase of 9 points from 2016.

 Keeping the customer informed: More customers in 2017 than in 2016 indicate that service
advisors kept them informed of their vehicle’s status (97% vs. 93%, respectively). Satisfaction
among customers who were informed of their vehicle’s status averages 765, which is 129 points
higher than among those who were not informed. In addition, 6% more customers this year are
contacted following the service than last year.

 Enhanced customer facilities: The percentage of customers who indicate that service centers
are providing at least four or more facilities/amenities, such as refreshment counters, internet
access and air-conditioned lounges, increases to 94% from 90% in 2016. Satisfaction among
customers who experience at least four of these amenities increases by 41 points to 763,
compared with 722 among those who do not experience the same.

 Customer satisfaction affects loyalty and advocacy: Nearly half (46%) of highly satisfied
customers (satisfaction scores of 823 or higher) say they “definitely would” recommend their
service dealer to family and friends, while only 10% of highly dissatisfied customers (709 or
lower) say the same. Additionally, highly satisfied customers are more than twice as likely to say
they “definitely would” revisit their service dealer for post-warranty service as customers who
are highly dissatisfied (41% vs. 14%, respectively).

Study Rankings
Toyota ranks highest in overall service satisfaction among mass market brands, with a score of 780.
Toyota performs particularly well in the service advisor and service facility factors. Mitsubishi ranks
second with a score of 778 and Mazda ranks third with 776.

About the Study
The 2017 Malaysia Customer Service Index Study is based on responses from 2,705 new-vehicle owners
who purchased their mass market brand vehicle between February 2015 and May 2016 and took their
vehicle for service to an authorized service center between August 2016 and May 2017. The study was
fielded between February and May 2017.

The study, now in its 15th year, measures overall service satisfaction among owners who took their
vehicle to an authorized service center by examining dealership performance in five factors (in order of
importance): service quality (32%); service initiation (22%); vehicle pick-up (18%); service advisor
(15%); and service facility (13%).

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