Customers before cars for Mitsubishi Motors NZ
Mitsubishi Motors New Zealand has been crowned the best automotive brand for customer experience and third best brand overall by Kantar.
Kantar is the world’s leading data, insights and consulting company and its Customer Leadership Index ranks brands on overall customer experience, including customer centricity, service delivery, offer excellence and brand clarity.
The results are compiled from extensive customer surveys and, for 2022, Mitsubishi Motors New Zealand (MMNZ) has been ranked the best automotive brand and third best brand overall across financial services, online shopping, retail and grocery, media and entertainment, travel, telecommunications, energy and automotive.
On average, MMNZ scored seven points higher than any other automotive brand when it came to delivering good value, which has always been a hallmark of the brand’s offering, said Customer Experience Manager Tafaoga Kamoto, a two-time Favourite Customer Services Representative winner at the CRM Awards.
“Good value doesn’t just mean the price of the vehicle and what it does for your money, it’s just as much about the aftersales support and all-round customer care that comes as part of the package,” said Kamoto, who was an integral member of MMNZ’s multi award-winning Customer Care Centre before heading the company’s customer experience team.
Kamoto said MMNZ’s latest success reflects its legacy of award-winning customer service practices, as well as significant changes implemented during lockdown.
“In 2020, we decided to use the Covid lockdowns as an opportunity to overhaul our CRM system,” said Kamoto. “We moved from a vehicle-centric system to one that is customer-centric at its heart, which has allowed us to tailor our service messaging and talk to customers across multiple channels.
“We have surveyed up to 1,500 Mitsubishi customers (both new vehicle and servicing) every month, which has resulted in actionable outcomes. Our dealer network is also provided with live survey scoring, so that they can respond through their day-to-day interactions on the ground.”
Kamoto added that all customer service metrics are “evaluated, discussed and resolved” at monthly meetings attended by an Executive Committee, which includes senior management and the CEO and President.
Chief Operating Officer Daniel Cook said: "As a brand, we recognise that aside from purchasing a home, purchasing a vehicle is one of the largest purchase decisions Kiwis are likely to ever make. That’s why we have a singular focus in providing industry-leading customer centric service throughout a customer’s journey – from enquiry, to purchase, to vehicle handover and the years of vehicle servicing that follows. That service focus is what we believe leads to over 50% of our sales each year coming from customers who are already part of the Mitsubishi family."
People looking after people
MMNZ’s people-first approach extends to ensuring its staff are also well looked after.
“You can’t look after your customers if your staff feel like they haven’t been looked after,” said Cook. “That’s why staff welfare and culture are at the top of our priority list.
“During the nationwide lockdowns of the past few years, we maintained full employment and have ensured that our staff share in our success as a company with financial rewards, wage growth, work flexibility and the addition of an extra week of annual welfare leave.”
The company is the first automotive brand accredited as a living wage employer in New Zealand.
“The cost-of-living crisis currently impacting hard-working New Zealanders places an increased responsibility on employers to do right by their employees,” said Cook. “At Mitsubishi, we view our staff as a family, and it’s important we enable our family members to thrive in this environment of escalating costs.”