Customer Satisfaction Surveys



  • rivertownrivertown Member Posts: 928
    Thanks for the explanation, Mack. Makes sense to me that someone else at the dealership can screw up a salesguys CSI. That's a shame, IMO.

    crkeehn - I understand the tires are warranted by the tire manufacturer. It's been that way for at least 30 years, since I've been buying cars.
    It turned out that this was an assembly flub; tire was mounted with an inventory sticker 'tween the tire and the wheel, thus the leak. The guy at my tire store dismounted the tire and pulled the sticker, at no charge.

    DB - That's what I called myself doing in taking the car back to the dealer for the slow leak the day after I picked it up. I'd ruled out a puncture and refilled the tire and went out there when it went low overnight, thinking valve stem or just maybe a 1/1,000,000 leak in the wheel.
    That's also what I called myself doing when I had the salesguy confirm the phone deal with his sales manager before going out to sign the buyer's order.
    That's also what I called myself doing when I sent the F&I guy back for a new contract when the first one included an extended warranty I didn't want. LOL, he came back with a contract including supplemental theft coverage, which I also didn't want and which took him twice as long to fix.
    So, at this point and before the CSI comes in the mail, how's the dealer gonna make this right? 2-3 hours of pointless hooey and aggravation is worth what? Pointless hooey and aggravation completely aside, 2-3 hours of my time goes for a hunky chunk of change. Heck, even 2-3 hours of my goofy kid's time is worth more than the oil change I figure the dealer might offer to make things right.

    So, my salesguy took a ding for some stuff he could have prevented (IMO he should have the caught tire since he had over night to prep the car) and for some stuff beyond his control. Given an SM willing to honor his own quote, an F&I guy willing to take the 1st 'no' for answer, and a service writer willing to get out of his chair to look at a tire, my salesguy would have had a perfect score.
  • afk_xafk_x Member Posts: 393
    I've been trying to avoid this topic because truly it doesn't matter - discussing it won't change anything.

    Still - now that we're into story telling i'll share two close to my heart

    At first I was rather cavalier about the process - assuming that if I did a good job I would get good marks. I scored well but once had a customer who was so happy in the comment section she remarked how wonderful I was, asset to Saturn, ect ect but because she didn't want me to get into trouble by having a survey that was "too good" she marked the second highest box on every question - so regardless of her remarks it was one of the worst surveys I have ever recieved.

    Second story I sold a Saturn to a former instuctor at the Air Force Academy. He was quite an interesting guy - fluent in several languages - but spoke in a thick southern acccent. I explained the survey process and how anything but completely satisfied was harmful to me personally. He said "Son, I don't give perfect scores. I taught for 10 years at the Academy and the best grade I ever gave was B+." I said I understood how he felt but that if he marked any question less than perfect it would actually hurt me so if he felt I had done a good job to please give me the highest possible scores and if he couldn't to just throw it away. I got his survey back - perfect scores - in the comment section he put "Good job John - B+"

  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    To answer your question...I can hardly walk after the weekend and I'm going back in today.

    We set a new record in August. I think the final count will be 508 cars. New and used.
  • prodigalsunprodigalsun Member Posts: 213
    Wear the Dressports today.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    To the dealers out there: have you ever encountered or heard of a dealer delaying the plates until the first payment is made so as to avoid registering the car and thus being able to sell it as "new" if there's a problem? Riverside mentioned this above but it seemed like a shaky idea. Just curious.
  • zueslewiszueslewis Member Posts: 2,353
    besides the usual minimum to first payment is 30 days, with many due at 45 days. Any temp tags/stickers would be expired by then (a few exceptions, like in PA).

    The other issue is that the car is no longer the dealer's while we're waiting for the first payment to be made. Once the deal is funded (2-3 business days), the dealer is out of it.

    It's between you and the bank at that point.
  • rivertownrivertown Member Posts: 928
    My idea wasn't that plates are delayed until the buyer makes a payment.
    It was/is that the registration is held until the dealer is paid - the buyer's check clears, the lender's check/commitment arrives, etc.
    Seen the threads about the dealer calling up days/weeks after the deal is struck to say the financing fell through? If the car's registered at that point, the dealer's leverage is gone.

    P.S. Yup, my temp tag was set to expire after 30 days. Dealer said not to sweat it; they'd give me a new one if the plates hadn't arrived.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    What extra leverage do they have in any event? In the usual spot-delivery scam, the leverage they have on you is that you traded in your old car and they no longer have it. So you're 'forced' to take the increased rate so that you'll have a car to get to work in. Whether the car is registered or not is irrelevant if their main aim is to get you to take the higher rate.

    If the dealer is expecting you to return the car if the financing falls through, then they're up the creek either way. They either have a new car with high miles or a used car with ultra-low miles. In either case, if they're hedging their bets that you're going to return the car, it still doesn't provide them 'leverage' on the buyer. In that scenario they're going to want to inform the buyer ASAP so that the car will have less miles on it. A week I could see, a month I can't.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Never heard of such a thing.

    Only a dumb dealer would "roll" a car if the financing is shaky. There is no benefit for them to do this. In eight years I have never, once had a customer have to return a car.
  • rivertownrivertown Member Posts: 928
    If the car is registered, the dealer has simply put himself further up the creek. The car can no longer be sold as 'new' or as an unregistered/untitled demo. Perhaps 'leverage' is the wrong word, but I'm not clear what you're getting at.

    I agree, the spot delivery scam is dumb in the long run, especially if the dealer has to take the car back with lots of miles. But, enough posters have reported that it goes on that I believe it happens.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    How shaky does a customer's credit have to be before you choose not to roll them?
  • chikoochikoo Member Posts: 3,008
    in fact most dealers, even the largest honda dealer in philly, talk about "I am willing to del if you are taking delivery TODAY".

    what does that mean? especially if it past bank hours? and they still promise to finance it. what happens if the credit history is less than credible?
  • zueslewiszueslewis Member Posts: 2,353
    have recently gotten more attention from the lawfirm I consult for (Philly area) - we've had fun making dealers abide by the contract they wrote.

    There are a few exemptions that many consumers agree to, though, that very easily set them up for the "changes to come" on their contracts.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    No set criteria but we can tell. A credit report speaks volumes!
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Member Posts: 9,332
    ........ If you have been paying any attention to any of Rivers posts, then you should know by now that he's the Mad Hatter of the post crowd, even Baghdad Bob took lessons from him .. most of us just ignore him.

             But before he starts another "Urban legend", this is how it works in world of Reality .. dealers don't hold up -any- paper work. Once the customer/dealer come to an agreement on price, payments, vehicle and $$ down, then a decision is made via the customers credit report, and most credit reports can be incorrect ..

              Then a decision is made to "spot" the customer in the new vehicle via a short interview (or a long one, depending on the potential problems on the report) .. if things add up, then the customer/dealer agree's and he goes home in the new vehicle ... unfortunately, there is sometimes some info that get's forgotten by the buyer, perhaps that pending divorce since 02, maybe it's that 3 recent lates on the mortgage from the famous Dr. down the street who makes $25 grand a month, or ~ maybe the customer "meant" to say he has been on the job for 5 weeks, instead of 5 years, and perhaps the Finance Mgr is losing his hearing ..

            Depending on the type, size, situation of the store, most F&I guys are hard at it the next morning and making sure the deals get done .. for those deals that are not getting a instant blessing by the lenders, that paperwork can get held during the day waiting for a *LENDERS* approval .. a dealer won't and can't, the word being here is ~ can't ~ proceed with any paper work because there is going to be a lien, a loan, it's a finance deal .. once it's a approved via the lender and the "lender" hasn't put any "conditions" on the loan (like more $$ down, debt ratio is waaay out of whack, had a foreclosure in another state and it's not showing up, until now) then the paper work proceeds .. also keep in mind, whether someone makes $2 grand a month or $25 grand a month that doesn't mean they have good credit .l.o.l. most times, it's the dealer that get's a deal done that normally couldn't get done via standard conditions .. but to answer your question, that's a No, they don't hold plates, the youngest child, the deed to the house, it's just another "urban legend" by our boy River, that gets more exercise jumping to conclusions, than doing any real research ...

                          Terry :-)
  • rivertownrivertown Member Posts: 928
    three weeks later, they've got your tags!

  • capitanocapitano Member Posts: 509
    I got the new Toyota survey in the mail yesterday. I was glad to hear from Cliffy that the new system no longer directly impacts the salesperson in a negative way if I try to be truthful.

    Oddly enough you can complete the survey online but the questions themselves do not take the internet into account.

    I gave the dealership excellent across the board with the exception of the follow up contact question. They did call, but they didn't actually talk to me and never called back to try again.
    I had a good, painless experience and felt good about the whole transaction. They never said anything about the survey.
  • audia8qaudia8q Member Posts: 3,138
    so you failed the salesperson because he didnt call you back after he left a message?
  • capitanocapitano Member Posts: 509
    No, that was not my intent. Cliffy explained that the new Toyota survey does not come back to reflect on the salesguy. So for that one issue, I checked good instead of excellent.

    Cliffy explained how it works now; that dealerships get aggregate ratings. The worst thing he said that could happen would be that if the dealership as a whole is struggling to stay in the green, then the pressure on the salespeople would increase dramatically.

    I asked for a refresher on how this stuff works on the Inconsiderate Buyers thread before I checked a single block. Cliffy said the 5 point system is no longer used.

    Across the board I marked excellent except for good on the "Dealership Communications" section.

    The other area where there was wiggle room was the question about being introduced to the service area personnel at delivery. I was not introduced to them, but it was not really an oversight. The salesguy knew I was an out of towner and that there was a 99% chance I would never go there for service. I checked Not Applicable. Later in the process they gave me coupons for the 1st three services which may make it worth my while to arrange to do those services there. Recent changes in my job make it much more likely that I will be in their area when the Odo hits 7500.
  • blh7068blh7068 Member Posts: 375
    "The fact remains if I don't feel 100% satisfied when I walk away from a deal the chances are good that I'm not going back."


    Im a little confused...meaning you did or didnt do business?


    If no, then there's no survey anyway...if yes then why did you go through with that transaction "not feeling 100% satisfied"?
  • wtd44wtd44 Member Posts: 1,208
    Surely the manufacturers realize at this point that the dealerships by and large are "bribing" buyers to rate them as being flawless.
    I recall being urged to give top marks to my salesman; and my decision was to "cooperate" in order to assure my being given the highest consideration should any warranty issues come up. If we know it's a game, and the manufacturers know it's a game, then why not play to win?
  • bobstbobst Member Posts: 1,776
    Because that would dishonest. That's why.

    If you are asked a question, the honorable thing is to give a correct answer.
  • capitanocapitano Member Posts: 509
    I've got the local dealer bugging me to "bring in" my service satisfaction questionnaire. They are offering me a $30 coupon to do it. It was not stated explicitly, but I have the impression that I'm not supposed to fill it out before bringing it in.
  • sandman46sandman46 Member Posts: 1,798
    I had the same thing happen to me in February. The service writer told me to bring in the survey so could "fill it out together". He filled it out, and I signed it! I did get a free oil change out of the deal. The funny thing was, I would've filled it out the same way regardless of the free oil change. Eventhough I was not satisfied with the warranty work they said was done, being the avid Edmunds fan that I am and reading alot about what these surveys mean to the dealerships, I would've given the highest ratings anyways.
    But I still took the free oil change!

    The Sandman :-)
  • wtd44wtd44 Member Posts: 1,208
    The dealerships that play this game are very interested in doing nothing to displease the customer. What they want is the opportunity to correct any shortcoming for you prior to you filling out the form, so that you can honestly give them top marks. Some people would not give any dealership (or salesman) top marks, period. Often, that is because they do not truly understand the grading scale, and they simultaneously assume that "straight A's" leaves no incentive to improve.
  • bobstbobst Member Posts: 1,776
    As Homer said when they asked if he was still holding onto the soft drink can, "Your point being?"
  • steine13steine13 Member Posts: 2,789
    Let me help out the class here:
    In that scene, Homer has his arm stuck inside the soft-drink machine, they've tried everything to dislodge him, and they're getting ready to chop his arm off. At that point, Smither's says, "Homer, are you still holding on to the can?"
    Cut to the next scene, where Homer has been freed without bloodshed.
  • wtd44wtd44 Member Posts: 1,208
    We needed that!
    I'll say that the satisfaction survey is not a matter of honor, but rather a matter of coercion against the buyer. You answer at your own risk, because the survey will not be confidential. Do not be naive and assume otherwise.
  • capitanocapitano Member Posts: 509
    I just wonder what the manufacturers think of their survey programs. Would they care at all to learn that perfect surveys are routinely bought with free oil changes?
  • raptor1raptor1 Member Posts: 4
    This is a story about customer satisfaction, surveys, and unethical tactics.

    I purchased a 2004 Accord EX about a week ago and I’m currently working with the dealer to try and become a satisfied customer. Surprisingly, the Honda satisfaction survey seems to be a big player in their motivation to make me happy.

    After the price of the car had been agreed upon they brought in the accessory salesman. Although I hadn’t planned on buying anything there, they offered to sale them at a discount that would make the drive worth my while (the dealership is a solid 60 minute drive from my home and I pass several Honda dealers on the way). One of the items I choose to get was an exterior/interior protection treatment with a lifetime warranty for $499. No more waxing or worrying about spilled drinks/food, right? Okay maybe not. But at the time I hadn’t read about what such plans are worth and my need to protect the car was very high. So I signed the deal and took the car home.

    The next day I’m reading through everything in detail before filing everything in a folder. I come across two discrepancies. The first is a math error where a subtotal on the loan paperwork isn’t the sum of the numbers above it. It’s $299 higher. Later on I also read the fine print of the paint/leather protection plan and realize it’s significantly different than the one I was pitched especially on several points that I had asked about explicitly.

    So now I’m curious about the missing $299 and a little upset about being lied to about the protection plan. I also find that there are a couple of minor things that were overlooked:
    • Missing radio an anti-theft code used to reactive the radio if it’s removed
    • An anti-theft lug nut key required to change the tires

    I call up the dealership and that’s when things started to go horribly wrong.

    Over the course of the next week the real unethical aspects of the deal come to light. I learn that the accessories I purchases with the car were not offered to me at a discount price like they said but marked-up significantly over MSRP. I learn that there wasn’t a math error on the loan paperwork – the printer skipped a line for a $299 accessory. I learn that this same accessory can be purchased and installed by this dealership for $215 if you walk in off the street. And of course I learned that the paint/leather protection plan did not include the features that were promised. And of course I learned from these forums that the protection plan would not be worth much even if those features had been provided.

    It’s hard to feel good about your new car when you learn all of this. I became real unsatisfied.

    The first question the Customer Service Representative asked me was,

          “What will it take to make you happy?”

    The second question he asked was:

        “Will you respond to the survey with all five’s if we do this?”

    We reached an agreement today on what will make me happy. Essentially it means putting things right with the deal and providing transportation so it’s not inconvenient for me to get the car worked on. In short to sell me the accessories at a discount ($600)and refund the rest including the protection plan ($900). In return I will to tell Honda that I’m satisfied with the service I received – which ultimately I am.

    Was this a bribe? I don’t think so. I would like to think that the problem with this deal were the exception and not the rule at this dealership. I would also like to think they would do the right thing regardless of whether Honda conducted a phone call interview with their customers. What I do know is that once the problem was surfaced, they’ve worked with me to make things right. And they did it without me feeling the need to make threats, shout and scream.

    Would I rate this experience a “5”? Obviously not. But on a pass/fail criteria then they pass by setting things right when they learned they had an unhappy customer.

    Perhaps the ultimate test is this. I felt depressed driving my new car when I first leaned what happened and when it wasn’t clear they were going to try and makes things right. And I’ve felt good about driving my car since they started working with me to make me happy. Isn’t that what it’s all about?

    It’s worth noting that during the course of my visit, the salesman informed me about the Customer Survey, how important it was and how the scoring worked (A 5 means pass and everything else means fail). Clearly they don’t want you leaving without know this.

    And no, I don’t know whether the accessories saleman has been reprimanded or will be made employee of the month for their sales technique.
  • pernaperna Member Posts: 521
    Here's what I would do. I would give them a perfect survey, since they held up their end of the bargain.

    Then, I would file a complaint with the BBB, and never give them another dime. Make sure your freinds and family are also aware of what happened during your deal.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    ...just learn from the experience and move on. Next time, you'll know a little better. In the meantime, enjoy your car!
  • bobstbobst Member Posts: 1,776
    Because of all that you have learned, I would give the whole experience a rating of 5++.

    So what have you learned? When you go to buy a car, you should have all of the details and the exact amount of money you plan to pay worked out in advance. Like someone else has said, when you go to play with the big dogs, don't wear your milkbone underwear.
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Member Posts: 9,332
    ...... ** Like someone else has said, when you go to play with the big dogs, don't wear your milkbone underwear **

                   .l.o.l... I like it, can I use it .?

  • prophet2prophet2 Member Posts: 372
    bobst might have that phrase copyrighted, so you may to pay him a fee to use it. Like how Michael Buffer (sp) copyrighted "LET'S GET READY TO R...RUM...BLE!"
  • bobstbobst Member Posts: 1,776
    Someone else posted it a long time ago, and I am just carrying along the tradition.
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    Norm on Cheers once said something along these lines, "Sam, its a dog eat dog world, and I am wearing Milkbone underwear"
  • wtd44wtd44 Member Posts: 1,208
    I detect that some Honda retail outlets display an attitude that is contrary to the desires of typical shoppers. Honda arguably manufactures some of the best cars and motorcycles in the World. Unfortunately, their dealer network members sometimes seem to express that they do not have to "deal" due to the exalted level of the products. Satisfaction surveys seem to be just about the only "hammer" the consumer has.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    So, a shopper gets ticked off because his low offer on a short supply high demand car gets rejected. In order to get the car he really wants, he has to pay what the current market is.

    Are you saying the buyers should then "hammer" or punish the salesperson and dealership for this by giving a bad survey?

    Maybe I missed something?
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    I think it's all in the attitude. Do you say, "Sorry, we can't sell the car for that price. But we can do $XX,XXX", or do you snort, bark with laughter, and say "You'll never get a Blahmobile for less than $XX,XXX". Same price, different deliveries.

    Still, not sure how you can use the CSI as a "hammer". At "best", you can use it to get "revenge", but if you had that poor an experience than why did you buy the car from them in the first place?
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Without exception, the people who pay the least never seem to be happy. These are the people who will give bad surveys. We can smell them coming.
  • prophet2prophet2 Member Posts: 372
    ...... is because they'll ALWAYS feel that they could have gotten the item for $1.00 LESS! And. they'll go ballistic when they find out that someone else did get the same model car at a lower price, even it was a MT, no power, no CD stripper in a puke green color. Cheaper price (for good reasons), but not necessarily a better deal.

    They never allow themselves to be happy for anything, for fear that they got "taken."
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Member Posts: 9,332
    ... **even it was a MT, no power, no CD stripper in a puke green color. They never allow themselves to be happy for anything, for fear that they got "taken." **

                 Bingo .....!!!

  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    To these forums, AFTER they buy the car and ask..." Did I pay too much"? or "Did I get a good deal?"

    Soeone will always come along to rain on their parade and tell them, indeed, they paid too much.

    Next day, they get the survey call....
  • wtd44wtd44 Member Posts: 1,208
    It wasn't so much that you misunderstood my post #142, but rather that I used an inappropriate word, "deal". I threw off your focus there. I should have gone to some length to say that many Honda employees give consumers the impression that they do not desire to find a solution or a compromise that will please the particular customer. Forgive my drama here, but it seems as though they are conveying, "This is the way we do it, and if that does not suit you, please step out of line. We have people waiting to do business with us on our terms." I keep thinking that the person who brings his wallet into your store is the king of the moment, and should be treated with deference. Am I totally wrong, here?
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    ...maybe not like a king, but certainly with deference and respect.

    These days, with so many makes and models to choose from, and dealers for that matter, I'd just go elsewhere if I was treated like that.
  • jaserbjaserb Member Posts: 820
    Here's my story.

    When we agreed to the deal on our van, both sides pretty much knew it was a rock-bottom deal. As part of the deal the sales mgr said "OK, we can do this price. But you've got to PROMISE to give us a perfect score on the survey." I agreed, and we did the deal.

    There were problems. Most of them I could live with - the car was dirty and was missing a volume knob on the radio, the salesperson was completely clueless (couldn't figure out how to open the fuel filler door!), we waited around for a long time before an F&I guy became available. When I brought the car in a couple days later to have the minor problems fixed, I ran into the sales manager in the hallway. We chatted a minute, then he said "remember to bring in your survey when you get it and I'll give you a tank of gas."

    I didn't think too much of it until I got the survey. I didn't feel too good about marking the top boxes when I knew the dealership had problems, but a deal is a deal. I started to feel even weirder when I saw the instruction on the survey that said "DO NOT TAKE THIS SURVEY TO THE DEALERSHIP". But I didn't have any super huge concerns withm the dealer, so I ignored it.

    Now the kicker. After I filled the survey out (I still haven't taken it to the dealer) I was cruising the 'net for info on our new rig, and I ran across this:

    My car falls into the affected VIN range. The little PDI stuff I was willing to overlook, but the dealership sold me a van with an open, safety related, "STOP DELIVERY" recall that hasn't been fixed!

    Now, a deal is a deal. I promised a good CSI as part of the deal. So what do I do about my concerns? I'm currently thinking about cornering the SM and chewing him out before I give him the (perfect) survey. Any other suggestions? A letter to the owner? Mazda Customer Care?

  • capitanocapitano Member Posts: 509
    Wow. Maybe you should try to see the general manager and or owner.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I agree that a customer should be treated with respect no matter how ridiculous an offer etc.

    I was just afraid that you meant it's OK to punish a dealer and salesperson by giving them a bad survey if they can't meet a certain price.
  • bobstbobst Member Posts: 1,776
    I don't understand what you are whining about. They agred to sell you the car for a certain price if you gave them a perfect CSI score. They did their part of the bargain, so now you should do yours without any fuss or delay.

    Fill out the CSI with a perfect score and give it to the sales manager.

    As for the recall, give them a chance to fix the car.

    Does the whole situation make you unhappy? Then stop making promises.
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