Shift in Motability customers sparks need for dealer showroom alterations

The Motability scheme has been driving to help mobility dealers adapt their showrooms and their staff as a result of the changing demographics of customers on the scheme.

Government changes to the assessment process for disability benefits has meant there are now more people on the Motability scheme who have neurological and mental health conditions.

The group that runs the scheme, Motability Operations, has recognised this change and has been meeting with mobility dealers to offer advice on how to prepare the showroom environment and train dealership staff to assist customers with wide ranging cognitive conditions.

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The group’s chairman, Neil Johnson OBE, said: “Partly owing to the changed qualifying criteria for PIP, and partly as a reflection of changes in society, we are seeing a greater number of customers with mental health or cognitive conditions. A successful series of business briefings to more than 3,000 dealers through January and February brought the topic of neurological conditions into focus.”

Although there are more people with cognitive conditions on the Motability scheme now, the overall number of clients has dropped.

The group’s annual accounts, filed this week, showed that the number of customers on the Motability scheme has fallen by around 3% meaning there are now 14,800 powerchair and mobility scooter users on the scheme, compared to 15,200 in 2016.

The scheme achieved a 98% overall customer satisfaction rate and produced revenues of £4.2bn alongside a total income of nearly £210m.

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