Europcar is moving away from the standard industry practice of simply leaving the keys to a vehicle wherever available if no-one is present to sign for it.
Instead the company now requires a mandatory signature from customers before a van can be handed over – protecting both the asset and the customer from any disputes over damage.
“Delivery and collection is one of the key services customers expect from rental providers, however the evolution of this service over the years has created a number of challenges for customers and suppliers alike”, explained Ken McCall, managing director of Europcar UK Group.
“The conventional model was based on the principle that the most convenient way of dealing with a customer who had their own insurance and was not available to take delivery was to simply drop the keys wherever possible – a reception desk, with a colleague, or even under a plant pot. However this presents a risk to both the rental company, in terms of leaving a valuable asset unattended, and to the customer who needs to check the vehicle is to their satisfaction before accepting its. As a consequence the industry has historically seen disputes arise regarding vehicle condition and damage long after the rental period. And that’s not good for customer satisfaction.
“Our new ‘No Signature, No Keys’ policy provides our corporate customers with a robust method of conducting a vehicle handover.”
The new policy ensures drivers are made familiar with every aspect of the controls and are comfortable with a vehicle, resulting in an incredible 57% reduction in accident costs compared with the same period last year. And by taking contact details for every booking, and liaising directly with drivers to agree delivery and collection times, the new Europcar service ensures that there’s no inconvenience to the customer.
“We have taken a different approach to what was an industry-wide challenge, with the result that we have significantly improved the customer experience as a whole”, concluded McCall.
“Since its inception ‘No Signature, No Keys’ has meant less aborted deliveries, thereby reducing cancellation charges for customers, as well as improving the speed and accuracy of any damage processing. Customer satisfaction has increased as a result.”