Outer Banks Harley-Davidson
The associates of MS Family Enterprises, Inc. take pride in serving our customers with excellent customer service. Our goal is to exceed their expectations while we continuously provide them with the highest quality customer service in every department.
We take a great deal of pride in our Harley-Davidson dealership, the products, services and lifestyle we deliver to customers. We are motorcycle enthusiasts and very much enjoy participating in the events and activities sponsored by our dealership and the Harley-Davidson Motor Company.
Showroom Design and Layout
The showroom is designed to reflect both the historic past and legendary pirate lore of the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Outer Banks Harley-Davidson features a spacious and inviting showroom filled with Genuine Harley-Davidson MotorClothes, Collectibles, Parts and Accessories, and a full line of Harley-Davidson Motorcycles.
The "Industrial"-style architecture invites you in, and the down-home atmosphere keeps you returning. As you step through the front entrance, you will see three circa-1900 buildings complete with tin roofs surrounding the showroom floor.
The decor also boasts a pirate's bounty to include a treasure chest full of gold coins and other riches. Life-size statues of Blackbeard, Captain Hook, and their fellow pirates populate the showroom, including two pirates climbing lines to the masthead (ceiling in our case). There is also a very attractive female pirate at the front entrance of the store who seems to draw the customers' attention, and serves as a backdrop for photos of our customers to document their visit to the Land of Pirates. Our pirate theme carries over to our custom T-shirt designs which are prominently displayed near the front entrance. There are 10 different pirate-related T-shirt designs, of which the lady pirate is the most popular.
A scale replica of the Wright Brothers' first airplane hangs from the center of the showroom, as well as a few pirates lowering themselves onto the showroom floor. On the left, the MotorClothes fitting rooms are located inside a replica of the first Harley-Davidson Shop. At the center of the showroom, a replica of the original 1903 Harley-Davidson garage houses displays of custom chrome wheels, and serves as the salesman write-up area. The walls are brightly painted to set the mood for comfortable, no-hassle shopping.
Storerooms for MotorClothes are located behind false walls, and permit easy restocking of merchandise. The customer lounge is located under the roof of the replica Harley-Davidson building, were customers can relax and plan their day. The floor is painted to resemble the light blue ocean, and you can find representations of ocean creatures such as starfish, sharks, and blue crab painted on the floor.
Merchandise is displayed on branded fixtures throughout the showroom. The Rentals Department counter is located in the main showroom, and it serves as a tourist information center, stocked with rack cards and information pamphlets for the most popular destinations on the Outer Banks.
Outer Banks Harley-Davidson P&A features a two workstation counter, as well as a Chrome Consultant station centrally located in the showroom. The Chrome Consultant station is surrounded by fixtures with P&A prominently displayed for add-on sales during the bike sales process.
Our showroom features P&A on one entire showroom wall as well as numerous floor fixtures. Parts are separated by model class for ease of shopping. The parts department has a large storage area. Custom paint sets and chrome wheels are displayed on the walls behind the parts counter. Custom neon signs illuminate the chrome displayed on the walls, adding color to the sparkle of the chrome.
On the showroom floor, parts and accessories are displayed on Harley-Davidson branded fixtures. Parts are displayed by collection or type of accessory (footpegs, backrests, etc.). Custom display cases are built into the counters, allowing merchandising of smaller chrome Parts and Accessories.
Above the parts counter is a large screen TV, which is always showing motorcycle events, races, or Motor Company branded DVDs. Custom display cases are built into the counters, allowing merchandising of smaller chrome parts and accessories, as well as Screamin' Eagle Performance parts.
Our Service Department adjoins the showroom, and is accessed through a set of double glass doors. The Service Department is designed for up to six technicians. Each technician's work area features Harley-Davidson Orange & Black workbenches, motorcycle lifts, floor mats, and tear-down racks. Each technician has two motorcycle lifts, maximizing their capabilities by providing a working lift while another may be tied up awaiting parts or accessories.
The write-up area is also home to a few pirate statues, one with a serving tray which holds small add-on parts that can be installed quickly and inexpensively. The write-up area has "no-cost" installation P&A items prominently displayed to promote add-on sales. Customers can ride their bikes directly up to the write-up counters, which is invaluable during periods of inclement weather. In the write-up area, a large hand-sewn quilt is hung high on the wall. The quilt was made by one of our customers incorporating all of our custom T-shirt designs, and was donated to the dealership during the grand opening. Glass display cases are utilized to display Harley-Davidson performance parts & accessories in the service write-up area.
Our dedicated Parts-to-Service Associate pulls parts needed for repair orders, and delivers them directly to the technicians' workbench. This allows technicians to concentrate their efforts on the motorcycles on their respective lifts. Computerized time clocks allow the technicians to clock on and off of work orders at their respective workbenches to minimize loss time.
Our shop foreman has a station centralized within the service area, allowing him to assign work, supervise floor traffic and technician activities, and constantly assess the progress of the departments' daily workload.
Our service department also features two-level motorcycle storage on one side. This area permits pre-staging of motorcycles in for repairs or customization, streamlines the movement of customer units through the Service Department, and reduces time lost trying to locate a specific bike.
Our service department opens at 8 a.m. daily, an hour before normal store hours, so that customers can drop off their motorcycles before their normal work day. Our service department also features a "Fast-Trak" for same day routine maintenance services, oil changes, and basic accessories installation. The combination of Fast-Trak services and early drop-off hours permit our customers to drop-off their motorcycles on the way to work, and pick them up on the way home.
Training and Employee Motivation Practices
We have a monthly orientation and training session as well as a 90-day orientation review for all new associates. The sessions are conducted by our chief operating officer, who is fully versed in all policies and procedures, and can offer insight and advice for specific concerns. New Associates are provided with a comprehensive listing of suggested or required training, complete benefits package, an Associate Handbook, and a copy of their job description.
Our ongoing employee training program includes formal in-classroom on and off-site training as well as online training. Each Service Technician is sent to a Technical Service School annually. We also utilize motivational speakers familiar to the motorcycle industry to reinforce enthusiasm, positive attitudes and persistence during difficult economical times.
Associates are required to keep up-to-date with all Harley-Davidson University online training as well as to attend any on-site training. We frequently ask our associates with an expertise in a certain area to provide training at our other dealerships. With multiple dealerships, this sharing of expertise helps to promote teamwork among all dealerships and builds camaraderie among all of our staff.
The goals of our training program include improving the responsiveness and effectiveness of our employees; linking regular customer feedback to quality service improvement plans, and promoting a customer base that is more informed and ready to purchase.
We meet this goal through continuous employee training, coaching, mentoring and measuring by means of customer feedback. Some of the methods we utilize for monitoring our customer service are independent call centers, corporate and in-house customer satisfaction surveys, in-house customer call-backs, recorded phone conversations, and role-playing.
Employees and department managers are empowered to resolve customer issues and concerns as they arise. This approach enhances the overall customer experience at our dealership by reducing the number of personnel a customer must express their concerns to before arriving at a resolution.
We carefully hire people, train them extensively so they have the knowledge and skills to achieve the service standards, and then empower them to work on behalf of customers, whether inside or outside the organization. Employees are recognized and rewarded for their service accomplishments, sometimes individually, sometimes as a group effort, in particular celebrating the successes of employees who go one step beyond the expected actions for their customers.
Incentive activities include in-store competitions, recognition programs and special pay programs.
We also have a monthly Associate of the Month recognition program, with the selected associate receiving recognition on a plaque displayed in the showroom and a reserved parking spot for the month.
All incentive plans are all goal-oriented and reality-based. We develop these goals and incentives based on current market trends and historical sales data. All incentive plans are reviewed on a monthly basis and refined to meet the current market trends. Special incentives are put in place to respond to specific sales goals such as a model of motorcycle that is not selling, Motorclothes or P&A that are slow or non-movers, or on finance products that are not meeting sales goals.
We also have special incentive pay plans for customer service and satisfaction surveys. We utilize programs such as mystery shops to evaluate our staffs’ customer service, and reward those who achieve an overall score of 95 percent or higher.
Through our training programs, employee and departmental incentives and team approach, we achieve cohesiveness among our employees to meet and exceed our customer’s expectations. This has resulted in our numerous awards of the Harley-Davidson Bar & Shield Award, a program that recognizes outstanding customer service and satisfaction as evidenced by customer service questionnaires received by the Harley-Davidson Motor Company. MS Family has received the Bar & Shield Award from Harley-Davidson Motor Company in 13 of our 14 years of business.
Commitment to Customer Service
We work hard at MS Family, however we also have fun. We provide training and management support/guidance to ensure our employees are comfortable making the day-to-day decisions necessary to run our business profitably, while serving our customers.
As previously outlined, our focus is on customer service and customer satisfaction. Our primary goal as outlined in our Mission Statement is to exceed our customers' expectations while we continuously provide them with the highest quality customer service in every department.
As part of our focus on customer service during a difficult economy, and through feedback from our staff and customers, we have developed and implemented several customer service programs to allow us to continue to improve services to our customers.
One of the most important is our Military Customer Care Program. Many of our customers are active duty personnel who deploy frequently, or even purchase their bikes through Overseas Military Sales and have them delivered at our dealership upon their return. We instituted the Military Customer Care plan which includes communicating with the deployed military personnel via email or other social media. Through these services, deployed personnel can discuss additional finance product offerings, dealership location and services provided, as well as ordering parts and accessories, motorclothes and riding gear, and have their bikes customized and/or serviced before they return home.
Fast-Trak Service Lane: Our service department now opens at 8 a.m. daily, an hour before normal store hours, so that customers can drop off their motorcycles before their normal work day. Our Service Department also features a "Fast-Trak" for same day routine maintenance services, oil changes, and basic accessories installation. The combination of Fast-Trak services and early drop-off hours permit our customers to drop-off their motorcycles on the way to work, and pick them up on the way home.
In-House Poker Run: All customers purchasing a new or used motorcycle complete an in-house poker run. Each department serves as a poker run stop, and has a unique gift for the customer. The salesperson walks the customer to each department and introduces them to a department Associate. The associate congratulates the customer, presents the customer with a gift, and has the customer draw a playing card. The card is then recorded on the poker run form, and the customer is walked to the next department and introduced. After the customer has completed the poker run, dependent on their poker hand, they could win prizes from a free T-shirt to a $500 gift certificate. Upon completion of the deal, the customer is asked to "ring the bell," a ship's quarterdeck bell mounted immediately outside the finance office. When the bell is heard, staff and customers alike shout aloud, applaud and greet the new owner to the Harley-Davidson family.
Customer Call backs: All customers of our Sales & Service Department are logged into a customer database, and are then contacted by an independent agency to assess their satisfaction of services provided by our dealership. Follow-up calls are also made by individual salesmen and service consultants. This program provided concise and timely feedback to management, and provides positive reinforcement of exceptional customer service.
Customer Passport: All customers purchasing a new or used motorcycle receive a Preferred Customer Passport Rewards booklet with over $1,500 in coupons. The passport booklet includes coupons and certificates good for FREE seminars, FREE weekday rentals, FREE 10 point pre-trip check-ups, discounts on safety gear, MotorClothes, and Parts & Accessories, FREE tire changes and State Inspections.
Customer Lounge: Our Customer Lounge was redesigned for customer comfort and convenience. It features a 40" LCD TV, Harley-Davidson leather couches, cafe tables and chairs, spacious and clean restrooms, and a self-service vending area complete with complimentary coffee & snacks. During the winter months we have "Hot Soup Saturdays," where our associates prepare a different hot soup for our visitors each Saturday. Complimentary hot dogs are available every weekend. A computer is provided for customer utilization, as well as Wi-Fi access for customer laptops and other electronic devices. Waiting service customers can look through the large windows into our Fast-Trak service bays, and watch the technician performing the service or installation on their motorcycle.
All of these programs, coupled with the ongoing training and customer service oriented goals, allow us to achieve high levels of consistently excellent customer service throughout all departments of the dealership.
Involvement in the Community
The dealership is active in assisting local organizations to expand or improve services to the community through fund raisers and charitable events. This involvement in the local and regional communities brings motorcycling and motorcyclists in touch with people from all walks of life,
In 2013, Outer Banks Harley-Davidson continued to increase our support of charities due to the economical hard times that have affected everyone, specifically so many small charitable organizations. Outer Banks Harley-Davidson hosted more than 20 charity fund-raising events to benefit the local community to include the SPCA, Homeless Shelters, and Project Life-Saver (a program for locating and rescuing missing persons). Outer Banks Harley-Davidson also hosted onsite events for local chapters of National Charities for the March of Dimes, American Diabetes Association, Muscular Dystrophy Association, and the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society.
Outer Banks Harley-Davidson also sponsored more than 50 community events such as local police and fire department annual fundraisers, military organization recognition and awards events, church and school activities, and charity golf tournaments. Active in local business organizations, senior management personnel are board members of the Currituck County & Outer Banks chambers of commerce. These organizations articulate business viewpoints in the public arena and strive to be the region's primary source of information about business issues. They also strive to improve our local economy by helping existing businesses to expand, by working with partners to improve the local workforce, networking opportunities, educational programs, cost-saving employee benefit programs, marketing tools and other services to fill the needs of our business members and contribute to measurable growth for them and their employees.
The following is a partial list of organizations supported by Outer Banks Harley-Davidson to date in 2014: Special Olympics, Currituck County Law Enforcement Association, Susan G. Komen Foundation, The Benjamin House, New Community Baptist Church Biker Sundays, Grandy Primary Parent Teacher Association, Corinth Baptist Church, Albemarle Food Bank, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Corolla Wild Horse Foundation, Wounded Warrior Project, Sgt. Mac Foundation, SPCA of Elizabeth City, American Cancer Society, Relay for Life, Moyock Women's Club, First Flight High School, and the Albemarle Hopeline.