CUSTOMER SERVICE: Be quick, keep them informed

J.D. Power and Associates data – based on surveys of more than 11,500 insured drivers who had a claim within the previous year – once again shows how important to customer satisfaction it is to get repairs done quickly and on time.

Satisfaction levels for the 75 percent of customers who felt their vehicle was done on time were nearly 200 points higher (883 vs. 709, on a 1,000-point scale). It doesn’t appear to matter what causes the delay: parts, unexpected additional damage, insurer delays or just plain too much work in the shop. In all these cases, customer satisfaction still never exceeded 728 points.

Setting expectations is particularly important on larger, non-drivable jobs, Jeremy Bowler of J.D. Power and Associates said. Fair or not, customers expect a drivable vehicle to be repaired within a week, and non-drivable vehicles – even the worst “train wrecks” – within two weeks. An extra effort needs to be made to adjust these expectations if they can’t be met, Bowler suggests.

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