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Motor industry jargon creates a barrier to communication

LeasePlan UK, the UK division of leading global fleet management and driver mobility company LeasePlan, today announced the results of its study into the use of motor industry jargon and its impact on customers looking to purchase a product or service. The firm spoke to over 2,000* respondents, in order to gauge their understanding of certain words and abbreviations.

Those questioned were asked about their understanding of the following:

  • SORN

  • PCP

  • P11D

  • Depreciation

  • Hire Purchase

  • Residual Value

  • Personal Contract Hire

  • Salary Sacrifice

  • Contract Hire

  • Finance Lease

Only 10% of respondents agreed that they could understand all of the abbreviations/jargon and could give an elevator pitch on them. Over half (56%) agreed, or strongly agreed, that when using abbreviations or jargon, they have sometimes been left more confused than beforehand. In fact, a significant 38% of them also agreed, or strongly agreed, that finance or motor industry jargon actually put them off purchasing a product or service.

Matt Dyer, Managing Director of LeasePlan UK said:

 “We know that jargon can lead to misunderstandings, leaving drivers exposed to unforeseen costs and risks. It is alarming to see how industry abbreviations and jargon are putting customers off purchasing products or services that could be beneficial to them or the business they work for. As an industry, we need to realise when this could apply and take responsibility for explaining anything complicated to customers in a clear and simple way.”

An even larger portion of 64% respondents either agreed, or strongly agreed, that jargon or abbreviations create a barrier to communication. This is especially true of those aged over 65, with 74% agreeing, or strongly agreeing, versus 46% of those aged between 18 and 24.

When it came to asking for help to understand jargon or an abbreviation, the research found that men are more confident than women. 39% of male respondents said they felt very confident to ask for advice versus only 28% of female respondents.

Matt Dyer continued:

“Terms used in the world of motoring can be confusing to those who do not use them on a regular basis. That is why we have introduced a clearer, jargon free way of communicating with customers. To achieve this, we have implemented a company-wide training programme for our staff, from seasoned veterans to our newest recruits. At LeasePlan, we are determined to put our customers at the heart of everything we do, helping them by ensuring their path to purchase is as simple as possible. We see it as our responsibility to explain our products and services in a clear and simple way – so our customers can make the right choice for them.”



* Methodology: The Omnibus survey was carried out with Bilendi, conducted on 5th December 2016, and collected responses to questions from 2006 consumers.






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