Prognostic Rather Than A Diagnostic Approach – Subhajit Roy, Tata Motors

With Tata Motors stepping into the premium segment with the New Harrier and also with the Altroz, how far has Tata Motors come from the Tata Indica days in terms of Service, we talk to Mr Subhajit Roy, Senior General Manager & Head Customer Care (Service & Spareparts) Tata Motors to find out.

Mr. Subhajit Roy, Head – Customer Care (Service & Spare Parts) Domestic & International Business – PVBU, Tata Motors.

Tata Motors has undertaken a number of initiatives on the customer service front to stay ahead of the competition in a market that has seen increasing domination of global players. The company has also been rolling out new products to cater to the ever-evolving consumer behaviour.

With Products like the Tata Harrier and the Altroz, Tata Motors is increasing its focus on post-sale customer needs and has been strengthening its after-sales services to cater to the enhanced consumer demands. Tata Motors – Passenger Vehicle Business Unit has been ranked 2nd for three years running, in the JD Power CSI Study.

In an interaction with BWBusinessworld Mr Subhajit Roy, Senior General Manager & Head Customer Care (Domestic and International Business), Tata Motors highlights the journey and growth of Tata Motors’ service organization.


What are the offerings from Tata Motors in after-sales-service for Passenger Vehicles?

Our service offerings are broadly classified into three types which are as follows:

1. Responsive

  • Prognostic rather than a diagnostic approach- reaching to customers even before a problem arises.
  • Humane & empathetic 24X7 roadside assistance. Women assist programme to support female customers in case of any emergencies.
  • Tata Motors Service Connect (TMSC) customer app wherein the customer can view service history, cost calculator, maintenance tips, etc. - one-stop solution to all customer’s problems.
  • Service appointment booking from the customer service app.
  • Re-defined pick-up and drop service with a regular status update to the customer.
  • Relationship manager concept- each customer has been mapped to a dealer.
  • Superior delivery experience.

2. Reliable service

  • Quality service repairs.
  • Quality body repairs.
  • Training & assessment of dealer manpower.
  • Upgradation of body shop repair equipment & processes to reduce turnaround time for faster delivery of the vehicle to the customer.
  • Auto car wash & foam wash to ensure car wash quality.

3. Best Value (Value for Money)

  • Tata Motors Original Spare parts.
  • Annual Maintenance Contract packages.
  • Extended warranty packages.
  • Wi-fi & cafeteria.

With multiple international brands present in India, what steps have been taken ensuring customer satisfaction?

Ceremonious delivery of body repair vehicles to give the feeling of delivering a new vehicle to its owner. Home visits to customers are special and unique and we find opportunities to celebrate the car’s anniversary and the customer’s birthday. Any new launch is followed by signature practices, which includes a swagat call, personalized service, pick-up & drop, loaner car offering, home visit, customer meet along with premium RSA assistance. We also conduct Mega service campaigns before any season (pre-monsoon, pre-summer, pre-winter) with a purpose to ensure that all service-related checks are done to ensure the vehicle is ready for the season.

Following are the pro-active initiatives that we have taken during the Covid-19 lockdown period to support our customers:

  • Warranty & Scheduled service period extension till 31st July for vehicles with warranty end date & free service period scheduled to expire between 15th March to 31st May.
  • Car care tips for maintaining vehicle health during the lockdown period - Promotion through social media & WhatsApp.
  • 24X7 breakdown assistance & Special Hotline for Doctors, Policemen & essential service providers.
  • TML team calling all the customers whose vehicles are in workshop for repairs to assure them on the safety of the vehicle.
  • Calling customers for appointments of due services for the vehicle which can be executed in a staggered manner when the lockdown ends.
  • Workshop restart plan to ensure sanitization and social distancing at workshops to ensure a safe environment for our customers.

Customer relationship building is the key factor that distinguishes us from other international brands. We conduct a lot of customer engagement activities right from customer education meets on product and maintenance tips to celebrating festivals with them. This lends a sense of bonding and increases customer satisfaction levels.

Number of service stations across the country?

We have a total of 650+ service centers.

Digitization of service processes – Service Connect app?

  • Through the Tata Motors Service Connect App, customers can view their vehicle’s service history, booking service appointment, get service estimate cost, etc.
  • Tablet based Jobcard opening on TMSA (Tata Motors Service application) and the Service Buddy app as a ready reckoner are few other apps for giving digital experience to customers
  • Vehicle tracking & bay scheduling (VTABS) helps in improving the efficiency of workshop & displays live vehicle repair status to the customer, while he’s waiting for his vehicle, inside the dealership lounge

Employee skill development – In terms of cars becoming technology-heavy today? Like for example, the New Tata Harrier comes loaded with a lot of new tech?

At Tata Motors PVBU, we train about 13000 to 14000 workshop role holders at our Training Centres every year. Apart from skilling, our PV Customer Care function has taken up the initiative of certifying its Channel Partners’ manpower for basic and advanced levels of skills in automotive repair. The skill gaps are identified through an assessment process and then training is imparted to the target manpower. Once trained, the persons need to undergo the assessment once again to get certified. In order to incentivize skills, Skill Contests are organized throughout the nation between all our Channel Partners, and the winners are suitably rewarded.

Our training courses are focused on state-of-the-art technologies built in our newer range of vehicles such as Harrier & Altroz. Recently, we have made our workshops BS6 phase ready by providing training on the BS6 modules. The next training being conducted is on connected cars to make our dealerships even more ready for the future of mobility.

How is Tata Motors breaking the stereotype of Tata Service from the earlier Indica / Safari times?

With the new age vehicles, customer profiles are also changing and so are we in terms of service. Our customers have become increasingly tech-savvy in the last few years and to cater to them, we have carried out a lot of digital interventions, right from appointment booking through apps to pick-up and drop along with SMS updates of vehicle repair status. Our Service Connect app is the one-stop solution for our customers, for all their service-related needs.

With Social Distancing becoming a norm, what are your views on Contact Less Service?

Pick-up and drop will ensure that the customer is not visiting the workshop, thereby maintaining social distancing. Post lockdown, we have planned for a contactless service by covering all the vehicle touch areas with bio-degradable seat covers, gear knob covers, steering covers and sanitizing the vehicle before delivery.

Premium Service. With Cars like Harrier AT which is costing above 20lakhs, and competing with brands like Jeep Compass, Hyundai etc… Are you planning on providing “premium service” so such customers?

Instead of premium service, we are determined to provide a premium experience to our Harrier customers. Our regional customer care managers are direct SPOCs for any support required by Harrier customers which is administered through regular home visits, frequent follow-up calls etc. In January 2020, we had conducted the Harrier Anniversary campaign, where we had provided the Harrier Gold Club membership booklet with various service offers along with scuff plates and free foam wash. This activity was a huge success and all customers have highly appreciated it.


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