Keeping customers happy is key for every business. Ensure you deliver the best service possible to maximise the effectiveness of your fleet.
Modern fleet managers have many things to contend with, from dealing with data to handling training and maintenance. It can be easy to forget one of the major factors they need to get right – pleasing the customer. Keeping customers happy and ensuring repeat business is important for every type of business. While hitting that target involves many different facets and routes, it should always be the most prominent factor in any decisions that are made.
If customers are unhappy, the bottom line is that they may stop using your company, so ensuring they’re satisfied with the service at all times is vital. Of course, understanding the importance and being able to deliver customer satisfaction are two different things. However, there are several cornerstones of service that will keep your clients onside and ensure your fleet has a positive impact for the business. Get these right – offering customers both convenience and reliability – and the rest will fall into place.
Timely deliveries and fleets
Companies that offer poor customer service rarely prosper for long. A global report by Microsoft found 96% of respondents cited customer service as an important factor in brand loyalty. When it comes to haulage and cargo customers, one of the key factors affecting happiness is the timeliness of the deliveries. Customers want their cargo to arrive when promised, with delays and excuses often having a knock-on effect that causes further issues.
Precision is key in a modern fleet and there are a number of tools, apps and other solutions available to help achieve this. These allow you to monitor where your trucks are, spot possible traffic issues that could delay them and to plan the best and quickest routes to make sure your fleet stays on track.It can help plan jobs by seeing which are available and most appropriate for the task, however most fleet managers only desire notification when there is a deviation from it.
TX-CONNECT is ideal for this, as it is a web-based back office solution that displays real-time information about your vehicles. This can highlight whether deliveries are on track or not, from departure to arrival.
With some 89% of consumers having moved to competitors following poor customer service, providing a consistent and reliable service is essential. To keep customers truly happy, you want your trucks to arrive at a time that suits them and when they expect to receive a delivery, meaning they can be ready to accept it.
Supermarkets, for example, prefer timed, regular deliveries – the same time every day – as it’s convenient for them and allows them to ensure other tasks are built around the delivery’s arrival. Should this not be the case, it can lead to low stock levels, confusion around delivery times and less efficient process.
Forward planning is an absolute must in this regard, so you can assign the right drivers and vehicles to the right job. Having your fleets equipped with telematics systems will help you keep an eye on where your drivers and trucks are in real time and whether there are any issues with the delivery It is crucial for having an overview of your fleet that you can react to and redirect, which in turn is key to consistency.
If customers are unhappy, the bottom line is that they may stop using your company, so ensuring they’re satisfied with the service at all times is vital.
Reduced downtime and maintenance
Having vehicles off the road for maintenance and repair can be the bane of a fleet manager’s life – but it impacts customers too. If you can’t get enough vehicles out on the road making deliveries and pick-ups, then there’ll be a chain reaction, with some clients not getting the timely, reliable service they expect.
You can get ahead of this and reduce fleet downtime in a variety of ways. Fleet management software and other technological solutions can help you keep abreast of issues with your fleet, from problems with brakes to tyre pressure issues that need addressing. TX-DIAGNOSTIX can provide remote diagnostics, reading out fault codes and describing the cause and solution, allowing you to detect anomalies or problems early on.
This will let you schedule preventative maintenance to reduce the time your trucks are in the workshop being fixed. Head off problems at a time that’s effective for you, so trucks and trailers are available at your customers’ convenience.
Sometimes delays to deliveries are unavoidable due to external factors. It may be a traffic problem, an accident or other type of hold up. Being an effective fleet manager means managers know how to react to this, at the core of which is communication.
Modern technology enables numerous ways you can keep in touch with your drivers, so they can flag any issues with their truck or trailer, or the road ahead. You can then use that information to plan, reroute and also communicate with your customers and help them stay informed about the expected arrival of their cargo. TRAXEE offers this with its fleet position, status and route calculation features – informing the dispatcher who can contact customers if necessary.
It’s one thing to be late, but it’s another entirely not to tell the customer. Keep the lines of communication open at all times and you can reduce the impact of delays – customers will appreciate being kept in the loop. Use TX-CONNECT MP, the multi-platform version of TX-CONNECT back-office software platform, to provide restricted access for customers to see the ETA of their delivery – changing their expectations.
Companies that offer poor customer service rarely prosper for long.
Accuracy and cargo safety
Poor service doesn’t just mean you might lose a customer left unsatisfied – it can lead to reputational damage too. Four out of ten customers will tell people to avoid to a business that has let them down. If you deliver the wrong load, cargo is stolen or damaged on route due to factors such as carelessness or incorrect temperature, this can happen.
Fleet telematics can reduce this risk, as can the extensive range of security measures available, such as door locks. Keeping the customer’s cargo safe, sound and secure is paramount, but also easier than ever with the right preparation.
Satisfying customers by offering a convenient, top quality service will ensure their returning business and enable your company to grow.