Empathica Helps Drive the Customer Experience at Halfords
Birmingham, UK – August 7, 2012 – Halfords Autocentres is now working with Empathica, the industry leader in customer experience management (CEM) solutions, to run its new CEM programme across its extensive network of Autocentres, after Halfords retail stores successfully implemented the programme last year.
Replacing a mystery shopping programme, the new solution invites customers to provide feedback online through printed cards that are handed out by staff at Halfords Autocentres and retail stores, and through e-mails sent after they have visited a garage or store. The data is then analysed by Empathica and fed back to Halfords in the form of focused reports that are tailored for each garage and store, identifying areas that can be improved and successes that should be celebrated with staff.
Rory Carlin, marketing director at Halfords Autocentres, said: “It’s crucial that we understand what customers really think about our service. As we continue to develop our brand personality under the Halfords umbrella and align our proposition to match customer needs, the Empathica platform will provide us with vital insights from thousands of our customers to help us make informed decisions. Essentially, it will help us raise the customer service bar by providing the best experience possible and deliver on our Helpful promise every day.”
“We have been running the programme for eight weeks now and have already received more than 10,000 responses. Customers are telling us we’re doing a great job. Just under half (47%) of respondents who provided feedback relating to their expectations of Halfords, said that staff went beyond their expectations, which is hugely motivating and rewarding for our teams,” continued Rory.
Halfords Autocentres also intend to implement GoRecommend, Empathica’s social networking application, which will enable satisfied customers to make personal recommendations of the brand or service to their networks via Facebook, Twitter and email.
Gary Topiol, Managing Director of Empathica for EMEA, said: “It has been a great pleasure to partner with Halfords, and we are delighted to now also be able to support them in getting closer to their customers and in their ambition to excel at customer service delivery”. With this initiative, Halfords joins other leading multiple operators including Boots, Waitrose, Debenhams, Caffè Nero and Mitchells & Butlers who have implemented CEM programmes from Empathica.
About Halfords Group plc
The Group is the UK’s leading retailer of automotive and leisure products and through Halfords Autocentres, also one of the UK’s leading independent car servicing and repair operator. Halfords customers shop at 467 stores* in the UK and Republic of Ireland and at halfords.com for collection at their local store or direct home delivery. Halfords Autocentres operates from 260 sites* nationally and offers motorists dealership-quality MOTs, repairs and car servicing at affordable prices.
Halfords employs approximately 12,000 staff and sells around 10,000 different product lines in stores, increasing to around 16,000 lines at Halfords.com. The product offering encompasses significant ranges in car parts, cycles, in-car technology, child seats, roof boxes, outdoor leisure and camping equipment. Halfords own brands include the in-store Bikehut department, for cycles and cycling accessories, Apollo and Carrera cycles and exclusive UK distribution rights of the premium ranged Boardman cycles and accessories. In outdoor leisure, we sell a premium range of camping equipment, branded URBAN Escape. Halfords offers expert advice and a fitting service called “wefit” for car parts, child seats, satellite navigation and in-car entertainment systems, and a “werepair” service for cycles.