- Loyal customers benefit from new, industry-exclusive FordPass Rewards program that offers complimentary vehicle maintenance when members purchase or lease a new Ford vehicle; in addition, customers earn points on service spending at Ford dealerships
- All-new customer contact center dedicated to assisting truck owners nationwide opens next week in Houston, bringing more than 500 jobs to the community; is the model for Ford call centers globally
- Ford piloting mobile service, which brings vehicle maintenance and light service to customers at home or work
“The customer experience is the most important area we can invest in to become the world’s most trusted company,” said Elena Ford, the company’s chief customer experience officer. “The real measure of our success as a company is keeping customers’ loyalty over time.
” This year, Ford already has doubled its investment in customer experiences, aiming to increase loyalty to Ford by further improving customer advocacy through programs that show appreciation to its long-term customer base. This follows benchmarking and learning from the world’s top travel, technology and hospitality companies.
“If we truly want to be serious about customer experience, we have to resource it like we do F-150,” Elena Ford said. “It’s time we do.”
FordPass, which already elevated the Ford customer experience by creating a single mobile platform where owners can monitor their vehicles, find parking spaces or make service appointments, is expanding with a new customer loyalty program called FordPass Rewards.
The program began rolling out in April and officially launches today with 1 million active members. FordPass Rewards provides the most comprehensive loyalty rewards program in the industry. With this program, customers who purchase or lease a new Ford vehicle will receive points they can use toward complimentary maintenance*, parts, service or a new vehicle at participating Ford dealerships.
“The flexibility we provide customers through FordPass Rewards is a unique relationship-building tool with our customers and dealers,” Elena Ford said. “Only Ford offers complimentary maintenance, rewards, roadside assistance and puts control in your hand.”
New Call Center
Model Ford is opening a new nationwide contact center in Houston that specializes in a new customer-centered approach. The center opens Monday, bringing more than 500 jobs to the community. Located in the heart of the world’s largest truck market, the center has a group of specialized agents solely dedicated to serving truck owners – Ford’s largest, most loyal and demanding customer groups – across the United States.
This contact center, which will be the prototype for all Ford call centers globally, works on an “own the call” model. Knowledgeable agents stay with the customer from first contact until every service and experience matter is resolved, rather than passing the customer to other departments. The process is a best practice learned through The Lincoln Motor Company’s contact centers. In addition, phone trees are replaced by voice-activated calling, helping owners reach customer-service experts more quickly.
“Customers in today’s increasingly connected world expect better and more personalized treatment from companies. They want solutions that make them feel productive, cared for and special,” Elena Ford said. “That’s why we’re reimagining every single part of a customer’s ownership journey. Everything we’re doing is to empower customers and make their complicated lives simpler and worry-free.”
Ford Mobile Service Pilot
Ford also is expanding a new U.S.-based mobile service pilot, which brings vehicle maintenance and light service to customers at home, at work or just about anywhere a customer wants.
Ford research shows customers like the idea of vehicle service coming to them. It also appeals to competitive brand owners who would consider Ford solely based on mobile service. Others said they would be interested in using mobile service for their current non-Ford vehicle. The pilot currently runs in California and will expand in May to dealers in Texas, Illinois, New Jersey and Florida. Based on results, Ford will decide later whether to expand it.
In the UK, Ford has operated mobile service for commercial fleet customers since 2017. The UK program operates more than 100 Ford Transit Vans equipped to carry out routine service and maintenance, vehicle and warranty repairs, along with recall repairs like software updates. Some dealers already have begun to expand mobile service to their retail customers. Plans are underway to continue to increase the UK network.
Easy Lease Renewal
Ford Credit has developed two pilot programs designed to make lease renewals worry-free.
These two programs were created after the credit team studied the market, the process and its customer base, reviewing the leasing journey from start to finish. The team sifted through hundreds of customer comments, creating:
- Personal Lease Assistant: Personal lease assistants will help about 1,000 customers of select dealers in Philadelphia and New York navigate the lease renewal process.
- Drive New. Now: By knowing the customer, Ford Credit can provide personalized vehicle offers – making sure customers are provided with the right vehicle at the right time.
During the past four years, more than 1,000 U.S. dealers have invested a total of $2 billion to upgrade their facilities to enhance the customer experience. With dealer and customer input, Ford is further evolving the customer experience with Ford Signature, a new retail look and experience that provides greater transparency in the sales and service journey.
Ford Signature includes replacing traditional deal desks with purchase rooms with shared screens; monitors with service prices and video feeds of the service garage; and celebration areas for new-vehicle delivery. Ford has 70 Ford Signature stores around the world. It will expand to 300 globally by year’s end, with thousands slated for completion in coming years.
In addition to the growth of Ford Signature dealerships, Ford is working with dealers to test new global retail formats based on the changing ways people are shopping today – from urban markets to rural to dedicated commercial point-of-sale stores.
One of the new global retail formats is Ford Smart Labs, the first of which is opening in Brussels, Belgium. Ford Smart Labs are small retail point in a high-traffic area surrounded by shops, food and entertainment, where customers can experience Ford products in an engaging and no-pressure environment.
The Brussels store is modeled after a successful retail mall concept developed by Ford dealers in Turin, Italy. Ford plans to roll out five additional Smart Lab designs by the end of 2019, including one in Germany and another in Canada.
“Our goal is to create an environment that reinforces trust and transparency,” Elena Ford said. “We’re aiming to do this in our retail outlets – as well as every touch point in our customers’ ownership journey.”
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*Modem must be activated within 60 days of purchase through the FordPass app on a smartphone and remain active for at least 6 months after activation or the bonus is subject to forfeiture. Buyers of non-equipped modem vehicles will also receive the welcome Reward after FordPass Rewards enrollment. About Ford Motor Company Ford Motor Company is a global company based in Dearborn, Michigan. The company designs, manufactures, markets and services a full line of Ford cars, trucks, SUVs, electrified vehicles and Lincoln luxury vehicles, provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company and is pursuing leadership positions in electrification, autonomous vehicles and mobility solutions. Ford employs approximately 196,000 people worldwide. For more information regarding Ford, its products and Ford Motor Credit Company, please visit www.corporate.ford.com.
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