Kwik-Fit urges fleets to pre-book for tyres
13 February 2015
BusinessCar Award-winning Kwik-Fit Fleet is urging fleets to pre-book for replacement tyres due to the massive increase in the numbers and complexity of tyres available on new vehicles today.
Peter Lambert, Kwik-Fit fleet director, told BusinessCar that the choice of tyres in the UK market has expanded from 19 in 1997 covering 90% of the market to 120 different tyres today covering the same percentage, and that as a result it was harder to guarantee having the correct tyres in stock
He explained: "Within that choice you have different speed types, rolling resistance. and it's becoming increasingly difficult to store the right tyres for customers."
Of the products it supplies, 40% are single units for a puncture or damaged tyre that needs replacing immediately, and Lambert believes the remaining 60% could be pre-booked. He said a particular problem is that the majority of Kwik-Fit's customers are arriving for tyre replacement at the fast-fit's 650 centres in the UK without booking.
Meanwhile, Kwik-Fit has introduced a customer service charter to address how quickly it can deal with fleet customers that turn up for tyre replacement. It guarantees a quote within 15 minutes of arrival and for work to start on the vehicle within an hour, otherwise an alternative date or mobile repair will be offered at the fleet customer's convenience.
Lambert said: "We wanted to make a commitment to our customers in the leasing industry.
"We looked at what the expectations were from a typical company car driver that was coming to us for tyre replacement. They want to know how long it is going to take to replace a tyre and we wanted to improve the communication as soon as they come through the door. Fleet customers need to know how long it is going to be until they can get back on the road."
Kwik-Fit also has more than 200 mobile tyre replacement vehicles, and Lambert said the firm is working on new real-time booking technology, which will enable fleets to book a mobile repair appointment in hourly slots, a bit like a supermarket shopping home-delivery service.
The fast-fit company is also looking to improve its same-day delivery turnaround, so the cut-off for orders can be put back from 2pm to later in the afternoon the same day. All of these measures will help tackle complexity in the UK tyre market.
Lambert said: "There is nothing worse than drivers arriving at a centre and being kept waiting with work taking longer than originally promised.
We have put a huge amount of effort in to further improving working practices and quality control across all of our centres and other operations such as mobile repair."
BusinessCar readers recently voted Kwik-Fit Fleet as the fast-fit operation of the year in the 2015 BusinessCar Awards. It is the 22nd year in a row the company has won the award.
Lambert concluded that continual communication with fleet customers is critical, and he believes commitments to improving waiting times with initiatives such as the new charter have contributed to the BusinessCar award.