Following nationwide regional qualifying contests, five finalists in each category travelled to the MMAL head office in Adelaide to battle it out for the chance to win.
The finalists were selected from a total of 812 service advisers and 1494 technicians from Mitsubishi dealerships all over Australia.
Finalists in the technicians competition were Carlos Dominiak from Dundas Mitsubishi in Queensland; Mark Taylor from Warragul Mitsubishi in Victoria; Young Min from Australian Motors Mitsubishi in South Australia; and Eric Tiongson from Melville Mitsubishi Western Australia.
However, they were all trumped by the eventual winner, Michael Bitar from Parramatta Mitsubishi in New South Wales, following a series of practical tests which enabled them to showcase their problem solving skills and product knowledge, all done under a time limit.
As for the service advisers, finalists were Justin Rowlett from Kloster Mitsubishi in NSW; Justin Mills from Frankston Mitsubishi in Victoria; Sara Jones from Australian Motors Mitsubishi in SA; and Davide Schiavoni from Southside Mitsubishi in WA.
The winner of the service advisers category was Kylie Hocking, from Zupps Mitsubishi in Aspley, Queensland. Ms Hocking has been a finalist in the Service Skills Category before and said the recognition of winning the contest was very rewarding.
“It’s great to be recognised as a service adviser because I genuinely like the people I work with and enjoy dealing with customers, and I like to learn things about our cars and how they work,” she said.
Service advisers were tested with a range of real-life customer service scenarios that assessed their helpfulness and professionalism.
The winners were presented with their awards by corporate general manager service office Mitsubishi Motors Corporation Kazuo Yanagimoto and Mitsubishi Motors Australia Limited CEO Mutsuhiro Oshikiri.
MMAL head of aftersales and customer care Neil Dunn said the role that technicians and service advisers perform is crucial for achieving customer satisfaction.
“Service Skills is an important program for Mitsubishi Motors as it provides motivation for Technicians and Service Advisers to engage with the brand and improve their product knowledge, troubleshooting skills and customer service skills,” he said.
“It is thanks to the expertise and professionalism that is honed by our participants during the Service Skills Contest that Mitsubishi continues to offer a consistently high standard of customer service.”
In a recent study of aftersales service by JD Power, Mitsubishi ranked eighth among leading brands in terms of customer satisfaction behind Ford, Hyundai and top-ranked Honda but ahead of rivals Nissan and Holden.
Mitsubishi has sold 64,243 new cars to date this year, up from 61,199 in 2014.
By Robbie Wallis