For any company, buying a truck is a big investment that has to earn its keep, whether it’s for an SME or a huge corporation. While breakdowns tend to be inevitable for at least once in the long-term life of a truck, the issue is often how quickly it can be repaired and put back to work. For any company, every minute a vehicle is off the road it is losing money.
When industry legend Nikki King OBE, the CEO of Isuzu Truck UK, founded the company in 1996 she instilled within the company ethos her obsession with customer care and service. 17 years later, if a customer isn’t happy they can still call her on her home or mobile number. Fortunately, these calls are very rare because Nikki put in place a team of Customer Care Liaison Executives who are assigned to every single Isuzu Truck UK customer for the whole of every vehicle’s 3 year unlimited mileage warranty period.
The CARE programme –Customer facing, Always listening, Reliable and trustworthy, Efficient and friendly – is something Isuzu Truck customers have come to know and trust. The team of just six women oversee the wellbeing of over 1500 customers and their trucks every year. Led by CARE team manager Lisa Smith, the team is based around the UK with Lynda Cam based in Chesterfield near Sheffield, Syan Hancock is in Cheshunt.Hertfordshire, Samantha Lowther is in Lutterworth, Leicestershire , Michelle Hicks is based in Birmingham and latest team member Edna Pink is in the Medway area of Kent . .
Lisa says: “Our customer care is personal and I think that makes us stand out from our competitors in the UK. When customers buy an Isuzu Truck they get a letter from Nikki with her direct contact details and those of everyone else in the CARE team, the dealers and their staff. She has set up a system so that every one of our 63 dealerships has a fully trained (by us) Customer Care Champion. When a customer’s vehicle is off the road we ensure that the customer is kept informed of the progress on getting it back on the road again. Our CLEs (Customer Liaison Executives) keep in contact with the dealers, the breakdown service and the customer until the vehicle is fully operational again.
“I think we can honestly say that Isuzu Truck UK has really been a pioneer and innovator in the field of customer care since it began in 1996. Nikki is often asked how we do it by other companies and she’s always really happy to reveal the reasons for our success. However, it needs to be embedded within every part of an organisation for it to work effectively and I think that’s what makes us stand out. Customer feedback is very positive and I know that our high level of repeat business and customer loyalty is a direct consequence of our CARE programme.”
Isuzu Truck UK has won awards for its customer care and is considered a benchmark of customer service within the industry. The CARE team are totally accessible to Isuzu customers and develop long-term, warm, working relationships with them. The CARE programme is clearly integral to the continuing success and growth of Isuzu Truck the UK in, which increased its registrations by over 20% in 2012 despite the difficult economic climate.