MOTOR Codes has received full OFT approval for its Service and Repair Code, giving motorists further reassurance.
The endorsement means subscribing garages can now display the OFT logo alongside the Motor Codes tick – something which is sure to give consumers added assurance.
Colin Brown, director of consumer policy at OFT, describes the move as, ‘one of the most important developments in consumer protection in car service and repair for many years.’
Chris Mason, managing director at Motor Codes, echoes Brown’s words, saying: ‘The Service and Repair Code was introduced at the request of government to deal with its continued prominence in complaint statistics and set out to improve standards and raise consumer confidence.
‘This announcement sends a clear message that we offer a comprehensively backed code of practice and our network of garages delivers real peace of mind for the consumer.’
Consumer feedback is central to the Motor Codes operation and each customer is encouraged to rate the quality of service received – visible online to potential garage customers. This open, customer-facing review system was a key factor in fulfilling OFT requirements.
‘Motor Codes has demonstrated a commitment to transparency and scrutiny amongst its members, making it simpler for motorists to make an informed choice’, explains Brown.
To date, in excess of 25,000 motorists have submitted reviews, all visible on the Motor Codes website.
Standards for Motor Codes garages are upheld through a combination of regular RAC Compliance Checks and the support of a structured advice and conciliation service, with a team of independent customer service professionals on hand to offer advice both to motorists and garages.
Where things do go wrong, a three stage intermediary process, consisting of Fast Track resolution, conciliation and legally biding arbitration is implemented to administer a fair solution for all parties.
Emphasising the effectiveness of this service and its value to businesses and customers, of all conciliation cases to date in 2011, more than 30 per cent have been resolved as Fast Track – meaning that solutions are brokered swiftly, while a customer’s car is still in the garage.
The RMI has also supported the news. Alec Murray, RMI Chairman, added: ‘The RMI recently pledged its full support to the scheme and see this development as vital to the growth of code.
‘With full backing from the OFT the code can go further in delivering peace of mind to the consumer and improved standards across the industry.
‘The RMI continues to work closely with Motor Codes to ensure the service is of value to both consumers and our members.’