The phrase “nine to five” is rarely mentioned at AC Services (Southern), in fact, it is often met with puzzled looks and raised eyebrows.
That is because it doesn’t exist at the company; the old adage, the customer is always right even when he’s wrong, is a mantra adopted by all, and this leads frequently to AC Services staff going above and beyond the call of duty.
And according to MD Helen Hagger, this work ethic puts the company is an elevated position compared to its competitors. “We literally go the extra mile to make sure that our commitment to our customers meets their needs,” she comments.
She cites a recent example when a customer was left with an absent chef, an unclean Rational oven and an urgent need for cleaning tablets. Being a usual busy Monday morning, there were no engineers available to deliver the items, which were desperately required in order for the client to open the following morning with a fully working oven.
“We tried every avenue to get the tablets to the client, but it came down to the only option in the end, I would have to deliver them after work myself, which I did,” continues Helen. “As it was out of my way, I managed to negotiate a pie and a pint for my trouble!”
The client too was delighted with the service, which makes AC Services stand out in a crowd. He wrote: “Just to say a huge thank you for helping me today. As always, you go the extra mile to help in trouble. ACS are the most professional of the many service providers we use.”
The nature of the business means that express or urgent jobs often come along when an engineer is already on the road to a pre-booked appointment, and says Helen, these ad hoc jobs often require specialist parts or equipment.
“I have lost count of the times that I have had to arrange to meet engineers en route to deliver essential items to them so that they can complete these last minute jobs. Obviously, they carry the tools and a large amount of stock they may need for routine maintenance, servicing and breakdowns, but if a client rings in a panic because a specialist component has gone wrong, then we have to source that component and make sure we get it to the engineer so that he can fix the problem in one visit.
AC Services has gained a reputation for reliability among all the Rational service partners. Helen recalls a phone call on Sunday afternoon from Rational Ovens in Germany, with a UK client who desperately needed immediate assistance.
“We are well known within the Rational network for being able to help when no other service partner is available,
” continues Helen. “The challenge was more in interpreting the strong German accent and halting English, but the result was that the oven was fixed, leaving the client and Germany very happy.
Of course, as with any business, not everything goes to plan. Expect the unexpected and you won’t be disappointed, warns Helen. However, the policy is to keep the customer informed at all times.
“If there is heavy traffic, or a road closure, then the customer is always told of the new estimated time of arrival of our engineers,”
she concludes. “We adhere as much as we can to our 24 hour call-out for warranty ovens, and barring incidents, we are justifiably proud of our success rate.”
Published Date: 30th September 2014
Category: Blog, News, Rational, Service plan
Tags: AC Services, service