Phase Four – The Financial Services Process

This is the fourth of a five-part series for OEM Management, Indirect-lenders, Dealer Principals, Financial Services Managers and Sales Management.

This phase involves the entire interaction between customer and finance manager. The primary responsibility for this phase falls upon the finance manager. The key elements of this phase include:

Greeting and introductions – Building rapport quickly is important to your success. Consider taking the Building Rapport course for more information on how to succeed in this area.

Center for Performance Improvement - Dealership Financial Services Process Improvement

Commitment to customer satisfaction overview – Set the expectation that you are interested in making the customer satisfied. This helps ease tension and allows the customer to focus on the details without fear.

Process overview – Trying walking through your dealership with a blindfold on. That’s what customers feel like. Explaining the process helps customers know what’s ahead.

Confirmation and accuracy of the purchase order – You show you care by confirming that everything is in order and accurate before you move ahead.

Fact-finding and clarification of customer wants and needs – Use open ended questions to find out about the customer’s ownership experience. This provides you with an outline from which to present your products based on their wants and needs.

Presentation of finance options and products – Even though the sales consultant may have provided preliminary information, this is where the “expert” gets to confirm what’s truly best for the customer.

Reaching agreement – This is more than just asking for the sale, it’s confirming that you have listened and have made recommendations that are suited to the customer.

Facilitating the transaction – This includes finalizing all contracts and documentation. It can occur in two parts if the customer takes delivery at a time that differs from the day or time in which they “contracted” the vehicle. Be sure you fully disclose all elements of the transaction and explain each document clearly.

Transition to delivery – This involves an explanation of next steps and expectations, thanking the customer for their business and re-introducing them to the sales consultant.

Next Week: Phase Five – Follow-through

For a complete look at how all five phases of the finance process impact customer satisfaction, enroll in our weekly Performance Newsletter.