Honda Tops 2018 J.D. Power Philippines Customer Service Index Study

Patrick Everett Tadeo

As can be expected when it comes to vehicle after-sales service, offering express service is a key driver of customer satisfaction, particularly for customers who visit a dealer for routine maintenance–at least according to the J.D. Power 2018 Philippines Customer Service Index Study–and of the car brands surveyed, Honda topped the list.

Based on the study, the number of customers who were offered express service during their most recent visit increased by 38 percentage points year over year (55 percent vs. 17 percent, respectively), with nearly half (44 percent) of those who used the express service option had their vehicle returned within two hours. Moreover, overall satisfaction among these customers is higher than among those who did not select express service (820 vs. 793, respectively, on a 1,000-point scale), with more than half (51 percent) of customers who chose this option said they “definitely would” recommend the service center to a friend or relative, compared with 42 percent of those who did not use the option.

This year’s study also finds that 82 percent of customers made an appointment for servicing their vehicle, compared with 47 percent last year. Dealerships have also been actively notifying their customers whose vehicles are due for service, with more customers receiving such notifications in 2018 than in 2017 (87 percent vs. 66 percent, respectively).

“With an increasingly fast-paced lifestyle, customers in the Philippines are time sensitive,” said Sigfred M. Doloroso, Country Manager for the Philippines, J.D. Power. “Given the decline in new-vehicle sales this year, dealerships have been trying to maximize their service revenue and improve capacity utilization. The retention of existing customers through systematic service reminders, notifications for due service, faster service turnaround and improved customer experience is the key to business viability.”

As for the car brands that met a customer’s satisfaction the most, Honda topped the list for the second straight year, with an overall score of 823 out of a possible 1,000–an increase of 20 over last year’s 803. For the 2018 study, Honda performs particularly well in three of the five factors: service initiation; service advisor; and service facility. Coming in at a very close second to Honda is Nissan which scored 822 while Mitsubishi ranks third with 816. Overall, the average customer service index score for the automotive industry is 812.

Notably, Mazda isn’t included in the 2018 study “due to small sample size.” For the 2017 study, Mazda was ranked fourth with a score of 795.

The 2018 Philippines Customer Service Index Study measures customer satisfaction with the servicing and vehicle-return process. The study is based on responses from 2,455 new-vehicle owners who purchased their vehicle between February 2015 and May 2017 and took their vehicle for service to an authorized dealer or service center between August 2017 and May 2018.

Now in its 18th year, the 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 (28 percent); service initiation (20 percent); service facility (20 percent); vehicle pick-up (17 percent); and service advisor (16 percent). The study now also includes the Net Promoter Score which measures customers’ likelihood to recommend their vehicle brand on a 0-10 scale.

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