With the COVID-19 pandemic accelerating the shift from offline to online transactions, the digital journey has an increasing impact on the overall customer experience, a growing trend in many sectors. It is certainly having a big impact in the automotive repair supply chain, say National Windscreens.
After a 66% peak in daily ecommerce sales at the height of lockdown, the ecommerce market has been transformed by the COVID-19 pandemic with global ecommerce revenues seeing 10% growth during 2020 alone, according to research by ecommerceDB.com. The research also confirms that the ecommerce market will see additional growth in the years ahead, increasing a further 11% by 2024.
“We have seen online bookings more than double over the past four years. Over 20% off all bookings we receive are now online and we expect this trend to continue accelerating,” says Nigel Paling, commercial and services director at National Windscreens.
“Our customers want to be able to contact us through whichever communication channel they find most convenient and they quite rightly expect to receive the same seamless service, whichever route they choose.
“Customers can make contact by walking into one of our nationwide networks of workshops; booking via the website; telephoning or SMS, using webchat or messaging via social media. In all cases the objective is simple, from one point of contact we will collect all the information we require to complete the job”, states Nigel.
The process to achieve this however is not simple, with a vast amount of information and processes required behind the scenes to deliver an immediate and seamless customer service. From identifying the correct windscreens part, requirement for ADAS calibration on specific vehicles through to providing live calendar availability for all 108 National Windscreens workshops and 800 mobile technicians. All this information must be delivered immediately to the customer and requires a powerful, seamless digital platform.
National Windscreens have partnered with Vodafone to utilise storm®, a leading cloud-based contact centre solution. This platform allows almost any kind of communication and provides real time information across the business, allowing a highly responsive approach to customer demand patterns.
The benefits of this can be most easily seen on the new website launched by National Windscreens, where accuracy, ease of use and speed are all critical. The website allows the customer to choose whichever contact method they prefer, with the intuitive, simple online booking process attracting the majority of traffic.
Just one of the new features allows people to identify a windscreen chip size and position with one drag and drop action, where the industry standard has previously been 4 or 5 questions with up to 15 answers to choose from. The system interrogates several databases to get the most complete picture of ADAS calibration requirements for the specific vehicle and provides live calendar availability, with morning and afternoon preferences, for workshops and mobile units for the next 62 days.
“Accuracy and exceeding customer expectations remain our absolute priority”, says Nigel Paling.
“Our PartscheckTM system gets the glass part selected right first time with over 99.5% accuracy, avoiding customer frustration at a technician turning up with the wrong glass for their vehicle. As we hold many millions of pounds of glass, we will only look to change a booking date if there is an issue with insurance validation or issues with part availability on unusual or prestige vehicles. We will advise customers immediately if there is a potential need for ADAS calibration in a workshop, to meet manufacturer requirements.
“We measure ourselves on the ability to get the job done right first time, requiring the customer to contact us only once. With a World class NPS score of 77, we are already delivering an excellent customer experience, but there is far more to come as we exploit this new digital platform to its full potential”, confirms Nigel.