Accurate Communication of Service Fees and Costs Enhance Customer Satisfaction, J.D. Power Finds Isuzu Ranks Highest in Thailand After-Sales Customer Satisfaction

Automotive Press Releases Monday September 24, 2018 13:18
Bangkok--24 Sep--vero public relations

Clear communication with customers both before and after vehicle service is one of the key drivers of customer satisfaction, particularly when providing service fees and cost estimates, according to the J.D. Power 2018 Thailand Customer Service Index (CSI) Study,SM released today.

Customer satisfaction among vehicle owners whose service fees are higher than expected (17%) is lower than those who say the fees are as expected or lower than expected (83%) (751 vs. 847, respectively, on a 1,000-point scale). The accuracy of cost estimates also has a high impact on customer satisfaction, with those customers who received an accurate estimate far more satisfied than those who received an invoice that was higher than the estimate (839 vs. 714, respectively).

"It is crucial that the service advisor fully understands and manages customer expectations related to service fees," said Siros Satrabhaya, Regional Director for Thailand at J.D. Power. "The customer should be aware of all details associated with the service, from the details of work to be carried out to the estimated cost before the service begins. The bottom line is that when a customer pays their actual fees, it should be about the same or lower than the estimation given. This is a very simple process to get right that has a substantial impact on the customer's service experience."

The study also finds that satisfaction among customers who were personally escorted to their vehicle or whose vehicle was retrieved by dealership staff is higher than among those who had the pick-up location of their vehicle pointed out to them (831 vs. 785, respectively). This demonstrates the importance of the personal touch when interacting with customers, which is particularly key when interacting with first-time buyers.

Following are additional key findings of the study:
  • Proactive outreach to customers: More customers are receiving notifications from their dealership when their vehicle is due for service compared to last year (80% in 2018 vs. 38% in 2017).
  • Satisfaction higher when scheduling on digital channel: Though only a small proportion of customers made service appointments through digital channels (2% on the manufacturer's website and/or app), these customers are more satisfied as compared to customers who made an appointment through offline channels (848 vs. 826, respectively). For future service visits, 9% of customers would prefer to make appointments on the manufacturer's website (2%) and app (7%).
  • Cash payments most popular but customers expect more payment options in future: The study finds that only 13% of customers paid for their service fees by credit card and fewer than 1% paid through mobile payment and digital wallet app. However, customers expect dealers to offer a larger variety of alternative payment methods, with 39% saying they would prefer to pay by credit card and 15% preferring to pay through a mobile payment and digital wallet app.
Study Rankings

Isuzu ranks highest in after-sales customer satisfaction with an overall satisfaction score of 847 and performs well in four of the five factors. Mitsubishi ranks second with a score of 840 while Suzuki ranks third with a score of 837.

The 2018 Thailand Customer Service Index (CSI) Study measures overall satisfaction among vehicle owners who visited an authorized service center for maintenance or repair work during the first 12 to 36 months of ownership based on five factors (in order of importance): service quality (27%); vehicle pick-up (20%); service facility (18%); service initiation (18%); and service advisor (18%).

Now in its 19th year, the study is based on responses from 2,658 new-vehicle owners who purchased their vehicle between February 2015 and July 2017 and took their vehicle for service to an authorized dealer or service center between February 2017 and July 2018. The study was fielded from February through July 2018.

The 2018 study for the first time includes the Net Promoter Score(R) (NPS)[1], which measures customers' likelihood to recommend both their vehicle make and model on a 0-10 scale.
About J.D. Power in the Asia Pacific Region

J.D. Power has offices in Singapore, Bangkok, Beijing, Shanghai and Tokyo that conduct customer satisfaction research and provide consulting services in the automotive, information technology and finance industries in the Asia Pacific region. Together, the five offices bring the language of customer satisfaction to consumers and businesses in Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, the U.A.E. and Vietnam. J.D. Power is a portfolio company of XIO Group, a global alternative investments and private equity firm headquartered in London, and is led by its four founders: Athene Li, Joseph Pacini, Murphy Qiao and Carsten Geyer. Information regarding J.D. Power and its products can be accessed through the internet at asean-oceania.jdpower.com

Media Relations Contacts
Aisling Carty; J.D. Power; Singapore; 65-3165-0119; aisling.carty@jdpa.com
Geno Effler; J.D. Power; Costa Mesa, Calif., USA; 001-714-621-6224; media.relations@jdpa.com

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