A $40 rant.

I’m ticked right off, and here’s why:

The Sylviamobile needed some warranty work (leaky, noisy strut). The closest dealership is Southtown Hyundai in Edmonton, so I made the 1.5hr drive (one-way) two weeks ago to get it checked out. From my initial phone call, every dealing with them was complicated. Little things like the customer service agent who couldn’t find a pen (and complained to me bitterly about it) to the assistant manager who could not answer a simple, direct question. (“When will you have an ETA on that part, so I can make an informed decision about booking my second appointment?”) Then there was the gross discrepancy in the cost estimate for non-warranty work between my first diagnostic appointment to actually having the work done two weeks later, and their disabled wifi after they assured me up and down it was working, and I would have no trouble accessing my office remotely from their waiting area. (Lies.)

From the initial phone call, I should have trusted my instincts and chosen another dealership, but I pressed on because Southtown was the closest authorized service centre and my car is still under warranty.

At every turn I voiced my disappointment with their service – always politely, but firmly enough for them to know I saw through their vapid “oh where has my pen gone THIS time” drivel, and quite persistently asking how my quote could have been so wildly underestimated two weeks prior. (I never got a straight answer, so I refused to authorize certain work when my car finally was serviced).

By the end of it they were handling me with silk gloves, but the service never improved.

After giving up a second day to car repairs, an entire tank of gas on two round trips to Edmonton and forking over the $400, I was happy to be on my way, finally.

That is, until they handed me this letter addressed “Dear valued customer:”

It reads, “Currently we are participating in a national customer service survey throughout all the Hyundai dealerships where I am personally rated for my performance as your Service Advisor. I would very much like you to fill the survey out scoring me a 100% or 10/10 anything less means my score will drop and my rankings nationally will fall 😦

“I hope that I have met all your expectations today, and if for whatever reason I have not I would very much like you to inform me so I may remedy any concerns so I can receive a top score on my survey.

“The survey may be emailed or sent by mail and I really encourage you to will it out as soon as you can at 100% satisfaction :).”

Punctuation and emoticons are hers. If you can imagine the kind of person who uses in emoticons in professional correspondence… well you’ve just imagined exactly the type of people I had to deal with over the past two weeks.

But to add insult to injury, I was told on my way out the door that if I filled out the survey at 100 per cent, I’d get a $40 gas card for my trouble!

So you’re buying your customer’s affections to gain top rankings, I pointed out.

“Oh no,” I was assured. “The gas card is to show our appreciation to you for completing the survey at 100 per cent.”

…That’s when my brain exploded all over the waiting area, and I melted into a puddle of frothy disbelief and motor oil.

How about a $40 gas card for my trouble of putting up with you lot for the past two weeks?

How about a $40 gas card as compensation for your wacky wifi?

How about a $40 gas card as an acknowledgement of your sub-par service and erroneous quote?

How about a $40 gas card so I can drive back in time and choose a different dealership, one that actually treats customers with respect and earns their top service rating instead of buying votes and pouting to get their way.

Ugh, I’m ticked right off.

I’ve since e-mailed Hyundai Canada to let them know how this dealership is pulling in customer satisfaction.

Perhaps it’s a common thing? Please tell me it’s not. Please tell me companies have more conviction than that.

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4 responses to “A $40 rant.

  1. They’re not all like that I promise! You should take this and write reviews of them on all the online review sites you can find…and then next time go to whichever garage is well-reviewed. Sometimes the cloud is full of wisdom.

  2. I went to a formerly trusted mechanic recently with a knocking. He hauled off a metal plate from underneath and said I didn’t need it. And now an ex-mechanic tells me he shouldn’t have done that as dirt and rust will get under the car. I told the FT mechanic this and he denied pulling the plate off and said he didn’t know what I was talking about. He only takes cash, no receipt.
    Sympathies.
    XO
    WWW

    • Grrrrr One time a mechanic didn’t replace the fuel filter after an oil change, and my engine seized about 10k after leaving the garage. They tried to blame it on a faulty filter that “fell off.” It was an enormous headache, but in the end they did the right thing and replaced the engine at no cost to me. (Albeit with a second-hand one).

      I followed up with Hyundai Canada in a phone call today, and to my gratification they were measurably shocked to hear a dealership was bribing its customers in this manner. Good luck finding a new mechanic!

  3. Pingback: What do handbags and TV have in common? | Laura Bee Dot

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