Over the years, various organizations have taken surveys of homeowners asking them what they look for in a residential service company. Results may vary a little bit, but most reach more or less the same conclusion.
In approximate order, they are:
- Scheduling (get there when I need them)
- Good communication
- No surprises
- Personal attention
Let’s examine these attributes.
“Dependability” means a lot of things and is closely allied with #2, scheduling. To us, it means, can we get there when you need us? And, will we do the work needed to solve your problem?
At Dutton Plumbing we pride ourselves on our ability to respond to 90% of service calls within one hour. The 10% of the time when we can’t we will call you to update an estimated time of arrival.
Dependability also means doing the work right and making sure you get what you pay for. I can’t say we never make mistakes. We’re humans and all humans are prone to errors from time to time. But all of our work comes with satisfaction guaranteed. If it’s not working right after we repair something, we will come back at no extra charge to fix it. Satisfaction guaranteed. You can’t define dependability better than that.
I already touched upon one aspect of good communication – contacting you if we can’t arrive on time. There’s another element of good communication that also encompasses item #4, “No surprises.” When one of our technicians arrives at your home, he or she will do a thorough diagnosis of the problem and let you know before work begins exactly how much the job will cost. If it takes longer than expected, or our technician has to run to a supply house for a part, we will absorb the extra cost. We don’t believe in charging by the hour and then running up the meter.
“Personal attention” means you’ll always speak to a real person when you call us. No menu options, no endless holds. Everyone in our office is trained to answer phone calls promptly, and if we do have to put you on hold, it will only be for short time. If we can’t respond to your request for a brief period of time, we’ll let you know that and call you back. Those of us who work for Dutton Plumbing have it constantly drummed into us to treat our customers as friends in need.
Actually, that’s not quite right. We’re geared to treat our customers as “family members in need.” It is constantly drummed into us to live up to our motto, “The plumber you’d send to your Mom’s house.” It’s no accident that our service agreements are labeled “Family Plan.”
Finally, of course everyone who calls a plumber is concerned about the price they’ll pay. Yet underlying every price is a value. When you go to a restaurant you expect to pay more for a steak dinner than a hamburger. Yet people are inclined to rave about a well-prepared steak for which they paid $25 or $30, and complain when they get a tasteless burger for under $10.
Dutton Plumbing is not the cheapest plumbing company around. But our aim is to deliver the greatest value of anyone else out there. Judging from our reviews, I think we’re succeeding.