The quality of automotive service continues to show significant improvement and is driving an increase in overall customer satisfaction, according to the J.D. Power 2017 U.S. Customer Service Index (CSI) Study released recently.
All five service measures showed improvement, paced primarily by service quality, which rose to 809 from 782 a year ago. Overall customer service stands at 816, up from 802 over the same period. The study measures customer satisfaction with service at a franchised dealer or independent service facility for maintenance or repair work among owners and lessees of 1- to 5-year-old vehicles.
The study shows that among customers who are contacted by phone, 55 percent say they “definitely will” return for paid service. When receiving text message updates, that loyalty factor jumps to 67 percent.
Key findings of the 2017 study include:
- Service advisor scores big: The highest level of satisfaction is in service advisor, with a score of 835. Service initiation follows close behind at 832.
- Technology affects satisfaction: Increases in the use of tablets by service advisors and online scheduling tend to increase customer satisfaction. Tablet usage increases to 24 percent from 17 percent in 2015.
- Almost a clean sweep: Customers rate dealers higher than non-dealers in 15 of 16 attributes. The most noticeable advantages are amenities offered, comfort of waiting area and cleanliness of dealership.
- The value of getting it right the first time: The vast majority (94 percent) of customers who take their vehicle in for service indicate that the dealer fixed it right the first time.
- Too much static: Dealers seem to have trouble servicing problems with radios. It’s unclear if the issue is vehicle- or service-related, but only 80 percent of customers who sought service for a radio reception problem indicate the dealer was able to fix it right the first time.
Lexus ranks highest in satisfaction with dealer service among luxury brands, with a score of 874, followed by Audi (869); Lincoln (868); Porsche (867); and Cadillac (865). Buick ranks highest in satisfaction with dealer service among mass market brands, with a score of 860, followed by MINI (850); GMC (837); Chevrolet (829); and Nissan (822).
Let us know! What are the strong points of your dealership’s service department? Where can you improve?