Nine of Motability’s scooter and powerchair dealers were recently revealed as achieving the best customer service scores on the scheme, with one distributor scoring an impeccable 10/10 score.
Ability Matters, True Mobility and John Preston Healthcare won their respective classes, with the winning and commended dealerships in the large and medium categories all scoring 9.8/10.
How then did each company go about achieving the levels of customer service needed to be crowned as one of the scheme’s winners or highly commended companies?
John Preston’s clean sweep that saw it achieve the highest score on the scheme is impressive but Aidan McCormack, group marketing manager, said the dealer follows a simple strategy.
“Primarily we try to treat each customer as we would want to be treated ourselves,” he said. “This is combined with specialist expertise and the use of management software to ensure each client gets what it right for them.”
Andy Burns, director of True Mobility, which won the medium-fleet category, said that the retailer puts a lot of effort into courtesy, speedy service and good communication with customers.
He said: “The scooters we supply on the Motability scheme are no more or less reliable than any others. We have breakdowns, repairs and reliability problems the same as anyone.
“But if a customer calls us with a problem we try to get there as quickly as possible (preferably same day) and then carry out the repair and get the scooter back to the customer ASAP.
“If we are running late or if the repair is taking longer than expected we call the customer just to keep them informed. Sometimes even if there’s nothing to report, it lets them know they are not forgotten and we are working on it.”
Burns said that it is also important to keep the same range of scooters in stock and not swap brands and models to look for a deal. The retailer strives to have a good range of spares so it can keep a customer mobile.
“This is hard to do if you frequently swap showroom models,” Burns added.
RKS OT Services Ltd was a highly commended dealer and has won a Motability customer service award for each of the three years the awards have been run.
Director, Bev Kelly, said that bosses work with its staff to ensure that all of the team are working towards the same goals.
“We treat our customers in the same way we would wish to be treated ourselves and we strive to continually improve our service.
“Despite winning the awards we cannot assume that we have yet reached our full potential. We treat our customers fairly and maintain high levels of communication with them, within our team and suppliers.
“As a company we are responsive to the needs of our customers, listening to their requirements, giving appropriate advice and spending time particularly at the point of assessment.”
Kelly added that the award demonstrates “a consistent level of customer service” as one less-than-excellent customer review can alter scores dramatically.
Giving an example of True Mobility’s approach to customer service, Burns said that last month it received a call at 10am from a powerchair customer whose equipment had broken down.
“Our engineer was able to quickly swap jobs around, load a similar demonstration powerchair on the van and get to him within the hour.
“Because we had the same powerchair in stock he was able to repair the powerchair there and then at the roadside and then shadow the customer for a mile or so to make sure everything was OK before leaving and allowing the customer to get on with his day.
“Basically that customer was mobile again in his own chair, away from home, 90 minutes after calling the shop.”
Meanwhile, Kelly said RKS is “constantly going the extra mile for [its] customers, from changing lightbulbs, replacing batteries in fire alarms and making cups of tea, to completing complex OT assessments for seating, postural and control needs”.
“We have also been known to have called out to a customer out-of-hours with a loan product as they needed to attend a vital appointment. Adam our engineer has even scrubbed a customer’s floor before leaving!”