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Joe Marconi

Document Exactly What the Customer States

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Document Exactly What the Customer States, Don’t Interpret what you “Think” the Problem Might BE

 

Not too long ago a customer came to us complaining of a vibration. The customer stated to the service advisor that around town his Honda felt fine, once on the highway the car starts to vibrate which can be felt in the steering wheel and throughout the car. After the customer finished explaining the issue, the service advisor writes up the work order and dispatches the vehicle to a tech. On the work order the advisor wrote: “Check Wheel Balance and vibration at high speeds”. Was the service advisor correct? Well, not exactly.

 

The tech road tests the car and does not feel anything, inspects the steering and suspension and all is fine. The tech gets authorization to check the wheel balance and alignment and the car is given back to the customer. Nothing is really found. The car is given back to the customer.

 

A few days later the customer returns complaining of the same problem. This time, another advisor carefully listens and asks a few key questions. This advisor asks, “Exactly when do you start to feel the vibration”? The customer replied, “After about 10 to 15 minutes when traveling on the highway”. The service advisor asked, “And you don’t feel any vibration at any other time”? The customer said, “No”.

 

At this point, the advisor knew that this is not a wheel balance issue. He dispatches the car to a tech and told the tech exactly what the customer stated. The tech was instructed to drive the car for at least 10 minutes at highway speeds. After 10 minutes, the tech felt the vibration, returned to shop and discovered that there was a faulty front brake caliper which, when heated up, was causing the brakes to drag, which caused the vibration.

 

The lesson for all of us is to ask questions and carefully listen to the customer at write up and not interpret what we “think” the problem might be. The clues to the problem are most often found within the words of the customer.

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