The Navistar Inc. Severe Service team recently launched an Application Engineering Hotline to provide an added margin of expertise for vocational truck sales. “Because of the highly customized and often complex configurations severe service customers require, our dealers’ support for [them] can be enhanced through direct access to Navistar application engineers,” says Vice President, Vocational Truck Mark Stasell. “The Hotline supports dealers’ strong relationships with customers by giving them the ability to get direct, expert advice when they need it.”
Rolled out to dealers through visits from the Severe Service team, as well as the dealer network’s online portal, the hotline can be reached through a simple phone call from any International dealer. Calls are immediately directed to an application engineer who fields to the dealer’s request and offers support moving forward. During an initial pilot phase earlier this year, the hotline quickly amassed well over 100 dealer calls. They ranged from general questions on severe service truck configurations to advanced, application-specific inquiries. Some dealers also reached out simply seeking an update on their orders or special quotations.
“There are many times in a given day when a dealer sales person needs an update or has a specific customer question that they need to get answered rapidly,” notes Navistar Chief Product Specialist, Severe Service Melissa Gauger. “How quickly and accurately it gets answered could have a big impact on that customer’s decision to purchase an International truck. By having our application engineers available to help through this easily accessed, simple-to-use hotline, we’re putting our dealers’ sales teams in the best possible position.”
Dealer feedback and customer results have been continuously measured since the service launch to determine the speed and success of responses. “The Application Engineering Hotline is a game changer for dealer sales productivity,” affirms Steve Jenkins, sales director at Orlando, Fla.-based Maudlin International Truck and Trailer. “All truck sales are perishable, so getting the right answers back to the customer as fast as possible helps us win more deals and grow our share.”
The Severe Service team is looking at expanding the hotline. “We have received such positive feedback that other product teams across the company want to use the same process for their segments,” Gauger observes. “It’s great to see that type of receptivity to the hotline, and we’re looking forward to continuing to provide this support for our Severe Service products, while helping different product teams across Navistar launch their own.” — Navistar Inc., Lisle, Ill., www.Navistar.com