This week at Lookers is Motability Awareness Week and throughout the week on the blog we’ll be bringing you all you need to know about Motability, including case studies of some of our Motability customers and spotlights on some of our fantastic Motability specialists across the group.
Today, we chat to Angela Ede, Senior Sales Executive and Motability Specialist at Lookers Nissan Gateshead. Angela is one of over 700 Motability specialists we have across our group and she took some time out to chat to us about what’s involved in her job and why she loves it so much.
How long have you been a Motability Specialist and what do you love about your job?
I first started with both retail and Motability almost 14 years ago at Vardys Sunderland Nissan. I then became a full-time Motability specialist when I joined Lookers Nissan Gateshead 6 years ago.
I love the fact that cars I sell can give customers, who may have been reliant on another driver in the past, a greater sense of independence in their everyday lives. Over the years I have met some wonderful people of all ages, from all backgrounds. Many of my customers have been with me for years and lots have come to me via recommendation from my existing customers which is the biggest compliment a sales advisor can get.
What’s involved in the role of a Motability Specialist?
Building trust: The role of the Motability specialist is to build trust with the customer as well as knowledge in the range of products we offer on the Motability scheme. Choosing the right car is so important and I always discuss in detail what the customer needs from the car and what they will be using it for.
Thinking ahead: You have to almost look into the future to make sure this car will suit their needs for the next 3 years, considering factors such as height, visibility, access, storage and adaptations.
Learning: I’m very happy to say I have a very good working relationship with both Bewick Adaptions and Motability, external companies who we work closely with on the Motability scheme, both of whom I speak to on an almost daily basis.
What is involved in an appointment for someone to find a Motability car?
At an appointment, I often start with a cuppa and chat. It’s important to make the customer feel at ease and it’s important for me to find out what they need.
Key questions I will ask are:
Have you been on the scheme before?
Do you know what the scheme entails?
Are you interested in a particular car?
It often turns out that the car they are interested in is different to the right car for their needs.
I normally show them the car of interest first, making sure they can get in and out ok and I go through their three year needs with them. If I need to suggest alternative cars, then I’ll always explain why I think those cars could suit them and their lifestyle. I’ll offer them alternatives based on a better seating position or bigger boot space for example.
We normally follow this with a test drive or two which really helps. If a customer requires adaptations, I will often drive with them as a passenger.
We’ll then have another cuppa and a review chat to make sure they fully understand the scheme and what’s involved. If the customer would prefer to think about their choice, they can make another appointment, either by phone or in dealership, to discuss next steps. If they are happy to go ahead, we will confirm the car and relevant adaptions, fill in the relevant paperwork, and let them know that we’ll be in touch. Once checks are done and the car is ordered, we’ll always call them to keep them posted.
What tips would you give to someone looking for their first Motability car?
The first thing I would recommend they do is research. There are so many Motability cars available depending on what the needs of the customer are. There is a lot to take in during the visit so it really does help if they bring a list of questions that they want to ask, so that they can make sure that they’ve definitely covered everything that they’d like to speak about. If I know someone is coming in for an appointment, I’ll make sure a disabled bay is available for them to park in and I’ll greet them – with a smile of course – at reception.
What cars do you sell the most of on the Motability scheme?
Both the Nissan Qashqai and the Nissan Juke are popular at the minute due the fact that the pricing is right and the height makes it easier to get in and out. However, each customer is unique and I always aim to find the right car for their needs.
My partner is disabled, am I able to get a Motability car on their behalf?
Although you won’t actually be able to own the car on their behalf, you might be able to become a nominated driver. This means that you’d be able to drive the car on their behalf.
To find out more about what we offer through our Motability scheme and to see if you’re eligible take a look at our website here.