Kia looks to improve fleet customer care
As part of Kia’s aim to be regarded as a serious fleet player, it wants all its dealers to embrace visits from company car drivers and offer a welcoming, first class service to them. The initiative is currently operating with the new Optima (Inset) D-segment saloon, although Kia may expand the initiative to other models if it proves successful.
John Hargreaves, Kia’s head of fleet and remarketing, explained: ‘We want to ensure that when a company car driver comes into a dealership, they will be extremely well looked after, even if they are not going to buy a car from that dealer. In the past, company car drivers may have been met with a frosty reception.
‘We will pay a dealer a reward for treating the customer properly, such as offering them a test drive and presenting the vehicle well.’
Hargreaves will receive feedback from customers who will be canvassed on their experience, allowing a reward payment to be made if all criteria have been met by the dealer.
The move comes as Kia builds its fleet market share, up from 1.5% in 2010 to 3% so far this year, driven by a raft of fresh product.
Hargreaves added: 'Sportage is making in-roads with user-choosers – it’s a car people are choosing because they like it, while in the traditional "job need" heartland the Cee’d stacks up very well on total cost of ownership.'
As a mark of Kia’s intent on making its mark in the fleet market, it is also working on a fleet aftersales and servicing programme, offering fixed labour rates and minimum vehicle downtime. And it has recently secured a ‘significant’ volume order from a public sector organisation, although Hargreaves wouldn’t be drawn on which organisation.