LINDA MOORE: Are 5 Affiliate Calls Per Ride Too Much?

Posted on July 21, 2009 by LCT Magazine

TOO MUCH PHONE? Many operators are pushing clients to move to online reservations as a way to cut costs and increase efficiencies. But these same operators are the ones who call the affiliate company three to five times with each reservation doing quality checks. Why is it necessary to make so many calls? 
1) Did you receive the reservation?
2) Has the chauffeur left for the job?
3) Is the chauffeur on location? 
4) Has the chauffeur made contact with the client?
5) Is the job over and what are the charges?
On the job for which you made $20, you just wasted all of the profits on phone calls. 
Some software allows you to view the “affiliate screen” and see the updates automatically. But this only works if both companies use the same software. I wonder if it is a quality control process or a trust issue. Do you need to make five phone calls to be certain that the ride will go smoothly? Granted, you are taking the control of your best client out of your hands and putting it into your affiliates.  Part of the problem is that many operators farm to people that they just don’t know. I get calls daily asking who I would recommend in a particular area. I have been to many operations and seen the facilities and how the operators work but in some cases I have only met owners at shows and have to trust their instincts. 
The issue also could be that you don’t trust your own internal staff. Did we farm the job? Did we select a good affiliate? Will we be able to fix a problem if it occurs?
I listen to the frustration of operators who say, “I won’t work for X company as it is just too much work. They make five calls for every ride. Who has time for that?”
If you want that business, you need to endure the calls. Is there an easier way?  Could you set a system where the chauffeur sends a text to the affiliate or is this just as much work? 
I have heard of affiliate companies who ask for photos of the chauffeurs, bios, and personality profiles. Wow! They send the photo to the client so that they will know what the chauffeur looks like. This sounds like a dispatch nightmare as that chauffeur is stuck on that job because of the process when it might be more efficient to change the chauffeur to a different chauffeur in a better location, etc. 
Are the companies making all these demands giving that much volume or paying a premium for this extra level of service? I think at one time they were but I am not sure anymore. With the current economic conditions are operators staffed to handle this level of service? Is all of this really necessary?
— Linda Moore, LCT East Coast Editor 
View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More LCT Blog Blog Posts

October 1, 2012

Event Management

Don't let your guests down. Here are some things to think about before the event starts.

September 26, 2012

October LCT Mag Focuses On Customer Service

ISSUE PREVIEW: What does he think? What did she really say? Are you channeling your customers? In the October 2012 issue of LCT Magazine, you’ll get a complete primer on how to read and please your
September 26, 2012

Driverless Cars Legalized In California

With no need for people to operate vehicles, how can limo companies adapt to the new world of transportation?
September 26, 2012

Manners Still Matter On Social Media

It has never before been easier for businesses to share information, insight and intimacy with consumers; it has also never been easier to offend them. Read more to learn how to avoid a social media faux pas.
September 20, 2012

My First Encounter With The 2013 Lincoln MKT Town Car

On my trip to Chicago last week for the 2012 BusCon Expo, I had the pleasure of experiencing a new ride — the 2013 MKT Town Car.
See More

Facebook Comments ()

Comments (0)

Post a Comment



See More

See More

See More

See More

LCT Store

LCT Magazine - October 2016 $12.95 COVER STORY: * Leverage Tech To Levitate Your Operations * *


Experience the three annual industry events for networking for business, showcasing vehicles and products, and getting the tools for success.

Read About Your Region

What’s Happening Near You?
Click on any state to see the latest industry news and events in that region.

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment


Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Metro Magazine

Serving the bus and passenger rail industries for more than a century

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

Please sign in or register to .    Close