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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I may be over reacting and if I am please let me down slow, but I made an appointment to drop my truck off at the dealership 2 weeks ago to get a noise checked out (the hemi tick) while the truck is still under warranty. So I dropped my truck off last night at the key drop off for a 10am appointment today. I never received a call so at 3pm I gave them a call. After getting someone they told me they wouldn't be able to look at my truck till Thursday. I asked what the purpose of the appointment was then, and they told me that was only to meet with my "advisor" and that a technician would have to be available in order to diagnose the problem. Why can't the advisor schedule me an appointment for when a technician is available based on my trucks symptoms? I am at a loss. Is this how the dealership actually operates, or are they giving me the runaround? :shy:
 

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This is how I found all my dealership 'appointments' worked. It is an appointment with the service adviser, which has nothing to do with WHEN the vehicle will actually be serviced.
A couple months back I called to make an appointment for an oil change, as I did not want to wait there over an hour like last time. After I made it, i asked how long the OC would take, and they said 'it depends on how many cars are in line then'. So much for a meaningful purpose of an appointment.
However this time was much faster - only 45 minutes... :i_rolleyes:
 

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My only "appointments" have consisted of things that needed a tech to ride along (vibration, rattling noise) so maybe thats why it has worked out for me. Or maybe my dealer is somehow better (highly doubtful!)

They are nice enough people but it is kinda annoying...my drivers side heated mirror stopped heating. I knew it, service advisor knew it, tech knew it. After 10 minutes "yep its broken, we'll call you when the part is in". "So wait, I have to drive all the way back here another day for a 10 minute install?"

At least they apologized for the inconvenience, and when I came back to get it fixed they basically did it out in the parking lot to send me on my way faster.
 

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I made an appointment once
At least i thought it was an appointment

The dealership wanted to rebuild my transmission on their dime
The Service Advisor made the appointment, so i was first in line at 6:30 am
I was told to leave the truck & they would call me when the transmission was finished.

Now comes the kicker, they only have one transmission guy in the main service dept.
He was on vacation & due back on the following Monday & when he came back he would first have to catch up on his back log & then he would get to mine.

So being as i also belong to the Business LINK, i can go to the Business only section of the dealership & get Next Bay Service
Well, the transmission guy over there was so backed up that it would be quicker to leave my truck at the regular service area & hope that the tech that was on vacation could squeeze my truck in.
That is what happened, he would rebuild & do whatever on other vehicles & then for the last hour or so that was left in his shift, he worked on mine.
I had it back on that Wednesday after he returned.

They have been pretty good to me, i think it has something to do with the donuts that i take them when i need something done
 

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It doesn't work like that here, at least not that I have ever experienced or years ago when I worked at the dealership.
There are usually 2 types of appointments here - day for drop off and initial service or waiting for service.
 

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No, my local dealer doesn't work like that at all. So far I've made 4 appointments - 2 oil changes and 2 recalls - and you just pull up to the service door at the appointed time, the door opens, you drive in, someone plugs a transmitter into the OBD port, then the gofer drives it straight into a service bay that's being held open precisely for that appointment.

Now, if you're late, and if someone else is early or if there's someone in a queue without an appointment, you might lose your spot, but that would be your fault not theirs.


The Subaru dealer's service dept works exactly like that too.
 

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That's completely unprofessional and defeats the purpose of an appointment. I had an appointment for an alignment a while back and the tech got hung up so I had to go in at 3 instead of 2. Since I had an appointment the service advisor called me and asked if that was ok or if I'd need to reschedule.
 

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My appointments are appointments in the logical sense; I have a 10:00 appointment, they move my truck to the bay and start working on it. Now if I drop off early, that doesn't change anything, it's just more convenient for me.

For me, service is a huge reason I buy my truck where I do. Can I save $500 somewhere else? Probably. But, for the most part I don't get screwed around in service and the service department has saved me well over $500 in waived fees, not charging diagnostic fees, etc. and it started before I had a truck that was new from them and under warranty.
 

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That's because obviously nobody has - or if- know, how to use intelligent shop planning software.


As I was Service Manager, I implemented a system from a software company, which increased the productivity and customer satisfaction about 300% within the first 2 months of use.


Every service writer entered his appointments with estimated work time into the system. The system sorted all specific work tasks to the specific technicians, who are defined due to their special skills. When the tech, the shop or the day was planned out, the system automatically did not allow further planning for the day- and this was visible for every service writer.
The day was also not planned out with 8 hours, but only 7 hours, which left room for extending work or unforeseen issues.
this way, every vehicle what was planned for the day was finished, the customer also got right up front the copy of work order including the estimated cost and knew, how much money he had to come up, when he picks up his vehicle.
There was much more to it- but that was basically the function.
If I would be responsible for a dealership or shop again- this is, what I would implement. And much more, those guys never heard of.


1 hour for an oil change is ridiculous. a fast lane for this would be very beneficial. simple things.


But that's what you get, when you have managers, who never learned the business before.
 

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Never heard of that. Here I make an appointment and the truck is fixed. Usually I can make an appointment for the next day or 2 days. You don't make an appointment to talk to the advisor most don't know anything about cars they just schedule appointments. The dealer has had my truck for a week and a half waiting for the new cluster to come in. They gave me a new 19 bighorn to drive as a loaner.
 

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Same here in Tucson AZ. I made an appointment, showed up early and was told it would be at least two hours before it could be looked at. I asked about the point of making an appointment and filling out all my info online when I have to start at square one with all that when I come in like they've never heard of me before. I was told the appointment is to get the vehicle checked in and parked in the lot. So after that, I just showed up without an appointment and I have had the vehicle taken into the shop much quicker. This is why I only go to the dealer for warranties and do whatever I can myself.
 

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In my experience the places that are booking appointments out three weeks give a strong indication of their inefficiency. For instance, I called for 2 issues, the backup camera died and needed to be replaced and for the tailgate recall. The first available time slot was in a little over three weeks, at 10:00am on a Wednesday. I brought it by Tuesday night. I hear nothing, so Wednesday afternoon I call them, and they haven't even looked at it yet. I asked why I had a 10 am appointment, but they didn't have a good response. I call later that afternoon, before they close, and they say it's ready to be picked up. Great!
I get down there, and I ask if they had any issues getting everything done. He looks at me quizzically, and then tells me they looked at the broken camera, figured out it was broken, and will have to order parts. Deep breath. Ok. Fine. How about the tailgate? Well we couldn't do the tailgate recall because we don't have the parts for that either.
So what exactly did they plan on doing during that service call? The parts required for the tailgate are known, so why not set them aside for me three weeks ago when I made the appointment? Then at least something would have been accomplished.
So I have to wait a week until the parts are in, and then I can make another appointment, and then finally get the stuff done. If you think of the time and effort for me, the guy at the service desk, the person booking the appointments, the gopher moving trucks around, and the mechanic that actually looked at it, you can realize the colossal amount of time that was wasted.

When you waste that much time of every customer, I can see why you're booking out three weeks. Think about how much more free time they'd have if things were handled efficiently.
 

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Note that your fixes were under warranty (or recall).

Would the appointment and conversation have gone differently if you were a paying customer? I know a lot of people say no, but a lot of people say yes, too.
 

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Note that your fixes were under warranty (or recall).

Would the appointment and conversation have gone differently if you were a paying customer? I know a lot of people say no, but a lot of people say yes, too.
I think it would have gone the same. I don't believe they were trying to screw me or anything. I believe it was inefficiency and nothing intentional.
 

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Note that your fixes were under warranty (or recall).

Would the appointment and conversation have gone differently if you were a paying customer? I know a lot of people say no, but a lot of people say yes, too.
When you take a vehicle in for warranty work, the service dept still gets paid for that work, just not by you.
There really is not much of a financial incentive for dealerships to deny warranty work on the grounds that they'd be on the hook for a bunch of costs, because they get reimbursed by the manufacturer so they're really not.
I swear I don't understand the crappy attitudes and piss-poor service experiences that get reported here so often, especially in larger urban markets where there are presumably competitive dealerships situated within 15 minutes or less of each other. How they manage to stay in business treating their customers like crap is a question worth exploring in depth, because according to Adam Smith's "invisible hand of the market"—which is pretty much considered economic gospel by the "conservatives" of this world—that's not supposed to happen. But it does happen, and all the damn time too.

Here in our part of the west, the closest dealer is a full 45 minutes away, and the next closest one is a solid 5 hour round trip, so they don't really have any competition anywhere close at hand, yet happily they have their ducks in a row in a big way, service-wise.

That said, there really is a shortage of truly skilled service technicians, and an even bigger shortage of people with the smarts and a wide enough skill set to be effective service writers and department managers.
 
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