Satisfaction is a person's feeling of pleasure or disappointment resulting from a comparing perceived performance in relation to his or her expectation. If the performance falls short of expectation, the consumer is dissatisfied. If the performance matches the expectations, he consumer is satisfied. If the performance exceeds expectation, the customer is highly satisfied or delighted. In today's competitive scenario firms consistently tries to satisfy his existing customer to get more customers in every regards. To meet the desired expectation of customers companies has to look around all aspects of products services and of course market condition, otherwise they may be out of the race. Automobile industry has the same competitiveness and every firm in the industry is consistently working for enhancing their product and services.
The study widely concentrates on the level of satisfaction amongst customers for which I did Exploratory Research to check the satisfaction level amongst the customers of Maruti as the popular punchline also says "Count On Us."
India is an emerging country with huge potential. The domestic economy is now growing at around 9-10% per annum and India's importance in global terms is being reinforced by rapidly rising exports and domestic consumption. At a time when numbers of a slowdown and overheating in the Indian economy have started gaining momentum, the Indian rupee sprang a surprise by pushing the GDP figure past the trillion-dollar (42,00,000 crore) mark.
The automotive industry is at the center of India's new global dynamic. The domestic market expanding rapidly as incomes rise and consumer credit becomes more widely available. Manufacturer's product lines are being continually expanded, as is the local automotive manufacturing base. Expectation are high that India can develop as a global hub for vehicle manufacturers and as an outsourcing center that offers the global automotive industry solution high up the automotive value chain .
Steps to be followed after receiving customer complaint
Firstly customer acre manager gives a control number to all complaints received and records the same in the customer complaints control register.
Then customer acre manager gets in touch with the customer over the phone and expresses regret on the inconvenience faced by the customer
Immediate action is taken to ensure that the customer complaint is resolved and writes a letter of apology
The customer care manager along with the concerned DSE, then visits the customer, hands over the letter and takes satisfaction note from the customer
Then he sends a copy of the letter and the satisfaction note to Maruti Udyog Ltd. And also files a copy of the same in the customer complaints register/file.
Then the CCM discusses the customer complaints in the weekly meeting with the general manager on SSI with the entire showroom staff. Necessary counter measures are taken to ensure that such complaints are not repeated in future.
ll sales staff and managers review customer care activities on daily, weekly and monthly basis. The SSI review meet is conducted regularly.
According to Maruti
"A customer is the most important visitor on our premises
He is not dependent on us ,
We are dependent on him,
He is not an interruption on our work,
He is the purpose of it.
He is not an outsider on our business,
He is part of it.
We are not doing him a favor serving him,
He is doing us a favor by giving us the
Opportunity to do so"
Maruti's Strategic Goal
-Maintained its materials cost despite change in product mix.
-Growing shipments of Alto.
-Has 55% of the market.
-Introduced both petrol and diesel variants of Swift.
-Maruti has cut the prices of models including Maruti 800, Omni, Zen, Wagon R, Swift Diesel and Alto . The amount of this price cut varies from Rs. 6,500 for Maruti 800 to Rs. 18,030 for Swift Diesel (in New Delhi).
-Maruti Suzuki to invest 200 billion Yen on expansion in India.
-Sri Lanka currently is the largest export market for Maruti where it sells 8,000-9,000 cars a year.
-Maruti Udyog to enter South African market.
-Invest more on marketing and research and development.
-They are working on identifying their dealership in the region in collaboration with the parent company Suzuki.
Threat of New Entrants
When the industry is profitable there is a threat of the entry of new entrants as they want to share the growth prospects so the existing firms either have to share the growing market pie or part with their own market share o the new entrants like the coming of new Tata Nano in the market which is an A segment car and is known for its low price and would give direct competition to Maruti-800 and would cause lesser sales volume and revenue and lower the returns. As the switching costs from the existing products to a new one is not high so this encourages the foreign companies like Renault and also Indian companies to bring in new models and enter the industry. Today the customer is not brand loyal and if there is product differentiation the promotion is so attractive that it supports the new entrants. Access to the distribution channels is not difficult as can be done by forming joint ventures like Mahindra-Renault. India offers a huge market for small, mid segment cars as the middle class is coming up in a big way and even for the prestige class as new and elite brands have come up and India is producing good number of entrepreneurs. Some of the ways of entering the industry is either directly or by acquisition, joint ventures, licensing, franchises, mergers.
Marketing Management by Philip Kotler
Kothari. C. R, Research Methodology, New Age International(P) Ltd., New Delhi