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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just came back from picking up my new Pilot which is just sooo awesome, but I have a question for all of you who have already gotten yours and who have had to complete the Honda survey.

Earlier this week, I had a bad experience with the dealer regarding my trade-in which is outlined in another thread. At the time, I told them that I would relay this experience to Honda when they called with the survey.

Tonight, when I picked up the car, my salesman said to me, "Remember to give me all fives on the survey. It is really important that you do that. Anything less than that, even all fours and it is the same as being scored with a zero. " I just looked at him and told him that I thought my trade-in was handled in a very slimey and unprofessional manner, that the number should have been good for thirty days and that it should have been given to me in writing. He acknowledged that it could have been handled better but he has no control over the matter. He said that he loses customers all of the time over $200. or so, but it is out of his hands and even though I am angry at the dealership, it is he who will suffer if I give anything less than a stellar survey response.

I asked him how was I supposed to register my dissatifaction with the dealership and he told me that they have a "Comments" section that I should feel free to say exactly what happened and how I felt about them. Supposedly the general manager reads each and everyone and that he really takes them to hear. Yeah, right!

After such a long-winded setup (sorry!), my question is this, does a poor survey really reflect badly on the salesman even though, it is the dealership that I am unhappy with or is that just a ploy because they knew that I was going to give them a bad survey and by trying to give me a sob story and if I comply with giving the "salesman" all fives, am I really giving the dealership the high marks which they so do not deserve. I guess the real question is this, with the survey are you rating the dealership or the performance of the salesperson?

Thanks for your input.
:cool:
 

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chiquita said:
Tonight, when I picked up the car, my salesman said to me, "Remember to give me all fives on the survey. It is really important that you do that. Anything less than that, even all fours and it is the same as being scored with a zero. " :cool:
I gave the dealer all 2's on my survey. If I knew it was the same as zero I should have just given them the Z E R O.
 

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sales incentives

I believe that at least some dealers use the survey results to give incentive pay to the salesmen. In this case, it sounds like the salesman was saying, "If it's not all 5s, I don't get a bonus." I have no idea how widespread this practice is, or whether it's done primarily by dealers that are owned by larger corporations (AutoNation, Sonic, etc) or just by dealers that need to raise their numbers. I've heard that Honda will not permit a company with poor numbers to open additional dealerships, but I don't know how much of an incentive that is, given that most of the growth for these companies is due to industry consolidation.
 

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I would put the salesman's comments out of your head, sit down with the form and fill it out as accurately and honestly as you can. The form and the questions on it were created to get feedback about specific points of your buying experience. Anything less than honest responses does us all a disservice.

Chris
 

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Salesperson ratings

I have a friend that works for a large MB/Volvo dealer. When he got a couple of less than perfect ratings, he was "demoted" to the Volvo lot for a while. They didn't reduce his rip of the sales he made, but he did lose a little seniority in the dealership - not being able to work the MB lot, not the prime time hours, etc.
 

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Dealers always seem to hit you up on that survey thing. When I leased a VW Passat the dealer actually sent me a huge Chocolate bar that was printed to look like a survey with all the “5’s” checked. I guess the really wants those high marks. I am not sure in Honda North America gives out awards for highest rated dealerships or not.

My salesman today mentioned it but didn’t push it. We had a nice rapport going and I told him I was happy (he had previously asked if there was anything more he could do to make me a satisfied customer) When we got outside I told him I would take care of him so he could get a nice bonus from the survey, he said it wasn’t really a bonus but the owner had given away trips to salesman with high marks.

Who really knows what they do but I think you should be honest if you are taking the time to do a survey. Honda dealers all over had bad reputations and yet people buy the cars nonetheless (like us!) The pilot marks my third Honda, I can say although my experiences were not horrible, I have been treated better with other dealers (especially my Mercedes ownership experiences.)
 

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Yeah, my salesman said the same thing regarding all 5's. Figured it was an incentive of some kind. Haven't received the survey yet.
 

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ditto on 5's

I picked up the Pilot after the service area had already closed, and my dealer said that I needed to put down a 5 on the question dealing with the service area. Even an n/a would be seen as a negative response. My sister bought her Passport from this dealership, so I have second-hand experience with service, so I don't mind giving them a 5. My buying experience was very good, so I will do it. Had it not been however...
 

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I am here to officially tell you that the survey you recieve over the phone is a direct grade on the saleperson. Question 7 even asks about satisfaction with the finance part of your purchase.......same thing, it all reflects directly on the salesperson themselves..... Individually! The surverys as a whole (for the year) are added up and represents the dealerships customer satisfaction.

It is a 1-5 scale, 5 = 100% 1,2,3,4 = 0% Questions 1,4,7,10 are the graded questions. Three 5's and one 1,2,3,or4, and you have just given your SALESPERSON a failing score (75%). Bloated? yes.

Our career progression, pay, bonuses, etc........ are all based on the survey. You do the math, A salesperson has to have an average above the "zone", for me it is around 89%. I can get two or three 100's, get one 75 or lower and my month is over!

None of us beg (we don't anyway) but we do feel we should educate our customers so that they don't go into it thinking 4's or less is still a good score.

As far as the comments, I too incourage my customers to put good, bad, or ugly comments. My GM prints and reads them, then he will pass it to my New Car Manager, then he to my Sales Manager, then to me. Trust me, your comments are read, and mean more to educating a dealer of right or wrong then any score can!

Hope this helps and didn't make you fall to sleep.

:eek:
 

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If that is true (and I don't doubt that it is) then the survey needs to be redone. If they want pass/fail then the question should only be presented with pass/fail options. If I'm given something where I am offered a 1-5 and there is no legend for what the numbers translate to, I start with a 3 and offer 4's for very good, and 5's for outstanding. What you are describing is a pretty rediculous grading system that will not provide a means for honest feedback that results in identifying areas for improvement. It can only serve to punish those who are not absolutely perfect. In most companies, you pay people to "be successful", not for everyone to be "the best." How does a company as large as Honda get to a point where they develop a rating system so flawed that a 1st year management student could tell you it's wrong?!

Getting back to the original post, if your buying experience wasn't perfect (and it sure sounds like it wasn't), do you think anything will get resolved by turning in a survey that basically says they were perfect in every way?

Chris

PS - Thanks for the dealer point-of-view insight. It really helps on issues like this one.
 

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They manipulate these surveys so much. The sales manager and salesman both gave hints about giving 5's. The sales manager said if there is any reason you decide you can't give us 5's, please call me first to resolve. I appreciate that to some degree, however the time to get the 5 was before the purchase. I've decided not to answer the survey.
 

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hubby45251 said:
I am here to officially tell you that the survey you recieve over the phone is a direct grade on the saleperson.
This description closely matches my local experiences. I am curious as to whether this use of the survey data is sanctioned or encouraged by HMC, or if this is simply the practice of the company that owns the dealer. Do you work for a dealer owned by a public corporation?

It is a laudable goal for HMC to have customer satisfaction in the 90th percentile or better (9 or 10 on a 10 point scale, 5 on a 5 point scale). It is also a laudable goal for dealers to use survey results to improve the performance of their sales staff.

But permitting dealers to set their own prices, so that customers pay over MSRP for the vehicles and get gouged again on accessories/warranty/whatever, and then having the salespeople browbeat the customer to give top marks on the survey is not the path to true customer satisfaction in the sales experience.

The Honda production/pricing policies benefit the dealers, not the customers. The Honda manufacturing arm produces terrific, high-quality products, but both the sales and the service arms lack a customer orientation.

Surveys are often constructed to mask the true intent of the survey. That may be the case here - with the result that the salespeople feel the need to browbeat (sorry, but I can't think of a better word) the customer to satisfy their own personal interest. Unfortunately, if this is the case, even a truly customer-oriented salesperson will wind up browbeating, because changing the way the data is really used is outside their sphere of influence.

So, either the dealers have to change (unlikely), or HMC must mandate a change, if they are truly interested in high customer satisfaction.
 

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You are all correct. It is a bloated system that we (the sales force) does not entirely like, but are forced to deal with. Keep in mind, many other manufactures are the same. They require a "top box" score or you failed.

Is this a AHC survey or dealer? The phone survey is from AHC. The dealership themselves can view the results on line through a secure web site. (of course print and then pass down the line) The dealership themselves will send an "in house survey" through the mail. This survey will reflect an "in house" score for the sale person in question, but does not affect his pay, bonuses, etc......(in my dealership that is). So here is your chance to fire away, good or bad.

In my dealership, the only time a customer comes into contact with a manager (other then the finance manager) is if there has been a problem. If the salesperson has worked in an honest manner, disclosed ETA, etc......then the only thing one should have a problem with is time. The time it takes for your hands to wrap around the leather steering wheel of your choice. Something, I should not pay a price for.

I do understand every place is different. I have no doubt after reading some of these threads, that there are some sales people who deserve poor surveys. I never beg for a survey, I only explain them so that my client can make an educated choice.

Good Luck
 

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Answer Honestly

Answer the survey honestly. If you don't , then they will have no incentive to improve. Did you ask your High School Teacher or College Professor to give you all A's?.

I gave out 5's to the sales rep and 2's to the liar, SOB business/finance rep. They earned their grade.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks "hubby" for the straight scoop. My overall experience was OK, but the trade-in deal definitely was handled poorly. I really don't want my salesperson to suffer. I think that alot of this was out of his hands. I will get at the dealership through the comments section and then IF they send an in-house survey.

I was really turned off by the arrogance of the "powers that be" in the dealership and their attitude to the customer.

Thanks again for your input. You are such a great member to have on the website. You help us all understand the "other side" of the situation.:D :D
 

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Honesty

xyzzy said:
If they want pass/fail then the question should only be presented with pass/fail options. If I'm given something where I am offered a 1-5 and there is no legend for what the numbers translate to, I start with a 3 and offer 4's for very good, and 5's for outstanding. What you are describing is a pretty rediculous grading system that will not provide a means for honest feedback that results in identifying areas for improvement. It can only serve to punish those who are not absolutely perfect. In most companies, you pay people to "be successful", not for everyone to be "the best." How does a company as large as Honda get to a point where they develop a rating system so flawed that a 1st year management student could tell you it's wrong?!


I AGREE! Honestly!
 

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I won't go through the crap that I dealt with when buying my Pilot, but suffice it to say that the finance guy was a lying, cheating bastard who did some very shady things. And the salesman wasn't entirely innocent either. But knowing this, my sales guy didn''t even ask me personally, but rather, sent me a letter in the mail telling me to give him all 5's.

With all respect to Hubby, if Honda has decided that only 5's are acceptable, then that must mean that they EXPECT the best. I'm not going to lie for the salesman or finance guy's benefit. That would be throwing away my chance to make a difference. If they expect 5's they should have provided service deserving of a 5. If they can't live up to the expectation, then maybe they deserve the ramifications that come with it.

Of course, if they do deserve it, then give it to them. But don't pass up your chance to make a difference. If they are punished (or not rewarded) for the failing in the dealings with you, hopefully that will affect their behavior and service levels in the future.

Most probably get by through relying on this pleading tactic, even after having been deficit in some areas. I think it is extremely unfair for them to ask, and I think the survey ought to ask if you were told to give all 5's and that should reflect negatively, because that would be artificially altering the results of the survey (sorry for the run-on sentence).

Given that, I don't expect perfection, and I would have no problem giving a 5 as long as there were no major issues. For me, I had many issues. And I was a very easy customer. I came in, drove the Pilot, decided to buy it, didn't argue the MSRP price or the trade-in value they gave me. Then they started screwing with me when I went in to finance it and tried to hide things. I gave them BAD reviews and didn't feel bad about it because they deserved it.

My rant is over.
 

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r_hammel,
Very well put. As I said before, after reading some different threads on the dealership experience, I have no doubt some outright deserve less then 5's. I aggree, a 5 indicates great service with no major hangups.

Sorry for your terrible experience, it is not a Honda standard. Good luck with your Pilot!
 

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My salesman gave me the same spiel on the grading system. I've had the Pilot for almost a month and have yet to receive the survey.

My beef is looking back, the salesman seemed to spend more time explaining the grading system than he did explaining about the Pilot!:rolleyes:

I didn't appreciate the fact that the finance guy called me the next day after I took delivery and informed me trhat he had mistakenly given me an outdated sales form to sign and that I had to drive back to the dealership (25 mins each way) and sign a new purchase agreement! He'll pay for that in the "comments" section!:11:
 

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How long before you get the survey?

I've had my Pilot for 10 weeks and survey haven't arrived.
My dealer shoved the window etch down my throat, and finance lady tried to tell me the $1450 for the Ext. Warr was great deal.
I was happy with the sales person thought.
 
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