House of Harley-Davidson
The House of Harley-Davidson exists to create world-class motorcycling experiences for life.
Showroom Design and Layout
When customers enter the House of Harley-Davidson, they are greeted by our Director of Communications and are walked directly into our large MotorClothes department. The MotorClothes department houses the largest selection of Harley-Davidson clothes in the area, including riding gear, fashion wear, children’s wear, jewelry, pet accessories, and home accents. In the rare event that we do not have an item, our team will locate whatever the customer needs.
The MotorClothes department flows down into the showroom, which houses over 120 new and pre-owned motorcycles. With a huge bank of windows and upgraded lighting technology, each motorcycle sparkles like it just came off the line. New this year is a raised sales tower for the sales staff, which allows them to make follow-up phone calls and e-mails while facing the sales floor. No customer walks through our sales floor without being welcomed by the staff, ever.
The showroom also houses the Rentals and Rider’s Edge desk, which is centrally located for easy access for visitors and guests. The showroom space connects directly with the Parts & Accessories department, which houses our new House of Customs custom chrome consulting area.
When customers enter the House of Harley-Davidson, they are cheerfully welcomed by our receptionist – aka Director of Communications. The front door leads our customers straight into our huge MotorClothes department. The MotorClothes department houses the largest selection of Harley-Davidson clothes in the area, including riding gear, fashion wear, children’s wear, jewelry, pet accessories, and home accents. In the rare event that we do not have an item, our team will locate whatever the customer needs. The House of Harley-Davidson has a large Clearance Garage area for obsolete and outdated merchandise, which gives our shoppers a great bargain-hunting experience! We have dual double-doors which we use to do big sidewalk sales during the summer months. And best of all, we have a team of friendly, knowledgeable staff ready to help.
From the MotorClothes department, the store naturally flows down into the showroom floor. The House of Harley-Davidson houses hundreds of new and pre-owned motorcycles – with that many units, there’s no need for customers to shop around! The sales floor has a huge bank of windows and upgraded lighting technology so each motorcycle sparkles like it just came off the line. Each sales person has their own cubicle, and since they’re dispersed throughout the sales floor, we know that no customer ever walks through without being welcomed by the staff.
Access to the administrative offices is via the sales floor, which allows us to proudly display a huge American flag. The showroom also houses the Rentals and Rider’s Edge desk, which is centrally located. The House of Harley runs Rider’s Edge from April through October – longer than any of our local competitors – and has graduated more Rider’s Edge grads than any other dealer. And we love to spend time getting to know our Rentals customers. Sometimes they’re recent Rider’s Edge grads looking to test out a new ride, and sometimes they’re international visitors gearing up for a month-long trek across the United States. We feel lucky to be part of all of their experiences!
The showroom space connects directly with the Parts & Accessories department, which houses our House of Customs custom chrome consulting area. The House of Customs is a first-of-its-kind experience for Harley-Davidson motorcycle buyers. Every bike buyer is taken to the House of Customs desk in the Parts Department by their salesperson. There they meet an expert Chrome Consultant and spend one-on-one time customizing their ride.
The House of Customs houses a bike on which the Chrome Consultant can switch seats, handlebars, and other accessories to ensure that the new owner rides out with a bike which fits them perfectly. Our Chrome Consultants are highly trained in the custom sales process as well as Harley-Davidson best practices, and both our Sales staff and Chrome Consulting staff are cross-trained to be able to support each other with customer questions and inquiries. We have 100 percent turnover from Sales to Chrome Consulting, ensuring that no customer leaves without a complete Harley-Davidson motorcycle purchase experience.
The expertise and cohesiveness of the staff at the House of Harley-Davidson allows customers to enjoy a world-class Harley experience here in Milwaukee: the heart of the Harley universe!
The House of Harley-Davidson not only offers service, but we are home to the best damn service department in the world!
Customers are greeted by our service writers with a great attitude, ready to help them get back on the road. Whether it’s a scheduled maintenance or an emergency breakdown, we help customers from around southeast Wisconsin and around the globe get back on the road. The House of Harley-Davidson employs 11 full-time Service Technicians, five of whom are Masters of Technology, the highest level of technician classification offered by the Harley-Davidson Motor Company. In addition to our Master-level staff, we adopt and endorse lean manufacturing techniques to save the Techs time and the customers money. The shop houses 34 lifts, and we are consistently reviewing stall layout to maximize Technician efficiency. Most of our lifts rotate, which allows the Tech to stay near his tools instead of spending time doing laps around a static bike.
Our VIP maintenance customers enjoy free rentals whenever their bikes are being serviced. And this year we’ve also started offering free rentals to all customers who are spending more than $1,500 in parts and service. Plus, since we're in Wisconsin, the House offers a comprehensive Winter Storage program. Customers have the option of bringing their bikes in or having us pick them up. We provide a heated, secured facility and are meticulous in the manner in which the bikes are stored. Before spring pick up we get their Harleys road-ready, so the customer can get on and go.
If this wasn’t enough to convince you that the House has the best service department in the world, maybe the judgment of every police municipality in southeast Wisconsin will help convince you. The House services every motor officer’s bike in every jurisdiction that has a motor officer on duty. This includes the city of Milwaukee and the Milwaukee County Sheriffs Office. Every. Single. One. It’s a world-class motorcycling experience!
Training and Employee Motivation Practices
Happy employees equal happy customers. It’s that simple! There are three ways that the management at House of Harley-Davidson keeps our amazing staff motivated and excited: benefits, leadership, and training.
In addition to a comprehensive health and dental insurance package, 401(k), and vacation time, the House offers its staff something everyone can use: extra money! The House has a terrific profit-sharing program that every employee is eligible to participate in. It doesn’t matter if you work 16 or 60 hours a week – everyone benefits from the success of the store. This profit-sharing program encourages staff to pull together and give every customer the world-class motorcycling experience, because we all benefit from it in the end. It’s an awesome benefit to working at an already amazing dealership!
Another way to keep our staff motivated is through constant communication. The leadership at the House of Harley-Davidson is dedicated to keeping staff informed and up to date, whether it’s regarding an upcoming promotion or an in-house flu shot clinic. The managers have daily "huddles" where information is shared for dissemination, as well as quarterly all-staff meetings where everyone is invited to ask questions about whatever is on their mind. Each department also participates in quarterly financial review meetings. At the financial review meetings, John will share the store’s income statements with every single employee and walk them through it line by line. This level of understanding empowers the House staff to not only come up with creative solutions to problems, but also to better grasp that we are all connected. And when the profit-sharing checks come around, it’s easy to show everyone how that benefit links directly back to the financial statements. We are all in it together!
The last key to keeping House staff energized is training. The House works hard to make sure that our service technicians are up to date on their Harley-Davidson training, and working toward their Master of Technology certifications. Every new staff person is walked through a training process. And in the chillier months when other dealerships are laying their staff off, the House is redistributing ours internally to make sure everyone has a steady paycheck.
The House management team believes that if our staff is motivated and excited to be here, that attitude will pay off with happy, long-term customers for life!
Commitment to Customer Service
At the House of Harley-Davidson, our customer service philosophy and goal is simple. Follow the mission: Provide our customers world-class motorcycling experiences for life. We aim to empower our employees to make the right decision, no matter the scenario. Checks and balances are in place to maintain a consistent experience for our customers, but if a manager is not available to step in on a case-by-case basis, then the answer is always “do the right thing!” This applies to everyday experiences and larger issues alike. For example, if a customer comes in and asks where the service department is, they aren’t simply pointed in that direction. They are walked down to service by a House employee, allowing us to learn about the customer’s needs that day. If there is major confusion or concern during a rally, volunteers and staff alike are instructed to do the right thing. Staff decisions will be 100 percent supported by administration as long as it was in the best interest of the customer’s experience.
Involvement in the Community
The staff of the House of Harley-Davidson knows that we can’t live our mission just within the walls of our dealership. The House values our community, and the best way to thank them is by giving back!
The House supports our local school district with both financial resources and raffle prizes throughout the year. We participate in dozens of poker runs. And we throw one hell of a party for charities who organize rides to support their cause. Part of achieving our mission is by providing a full motorcycling experience, and that means getting on the road! Some of the larger charities supported by the House of Harley in 2012 include:
• Vince Lombardi Cancer Foundation and the annual Dinner with the Starrs and Ride to Daylight – this year featuring Green Bay Packer Legends Bart Starr, Zeke Bratkowski, and Jerry Kramer
• On A Mission For Families, supporting the families of active military members
• ATI Foundation, raising money to assist families with children who require extensive physical therapy
• Wisconsin Fisher House Foundation, supporting families of Veterans hospitalized at V.A. facilities
• New in 2012: Law Enforcement Ride benefiting Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.).