Penske Truck Rental’s customer service practices through social media have been recognized by the industry as an inaugural recipient of the CRMXcellence award. The company’s dedicated social media group, known as Penske Cares, was a winner in the Best Use of Social Media category.
This is the first year of the CRMXcellence awards, handed out by a trio of organizations within the customer service industry: CRMXchange, Quality Assurance and Training Connection (QATC) and the Society of Workforce Planning Professionals (SWPP).
According to CRMXchange, companies are “celebrated for their demonstrated accomplishments in delivering the highest level of customer service.”
“We are honored to win the very first CRMXcellence award,” stated Kevin Kleckner, director of consumer rental for Penske. “The work of our social media team fits into a broader picture of effectively serving our truck rental customers.”
The great majority of the assistance the Penske Cares team provides on social media is via Twitter, where customer questions, issues and concerns are fielded in a timely manner through the @PenskeCares handle. The team also interfaces with customers through Facebook and other social media channels.
The Penske Cares team is led by Laura Sipala, supervisor of central reservations, and Tony Kozuch, lead rental support coordinator.
“As a team we take great joy in answering questions from our customers, or resolving their issues,” Sipala explained.
“We use a tool to monitor and respond to online conversations and that’s where we find out about customer questions, issues or provide an answer to things like whether or not we rent car carriers, sell moving accessories (affirmative to both),”she said. “Customers are often pleasantly surprised when we reply to them.”
The current Penske Cares team consists of these associates: Cheryl Weinhold, Elizabeth Brown, John Mintz, Amy Welder, Lindsey Villecco, Kristin Bayer, Chris Pena, Richard Bucks, Jennifer Bohn, Taryn Hammerschmidt, Shyla Frederick and Craig Samuel.
"I'm really proud of how the Penske Cares team has evolved in such a short time period," said Penske's director of communications Randy Ryerson. "Their work is truly improving the customer experience through social media."
The @PenskeMoving Twitter account sends out a daily listing of do-it-yourself moving tips, discounts and contests.
Penske was also awarded $500 to donate to their charity of choice, which is the Paralyzed Veterans of America. The Mission: ABLE campaign ensures veterans with disabilities get the care, benefits and job opportunities they’ve earned and deserve.
Penske Truck Rental has been inviting its consumer rental customers to donate $1 to support Mission: ABLE when they rent one-way trucks. The fundraising effort will continue to run through Memorial Day 2014.
By Alen Beljin