November, 7, 2019
Ideal First Choice, the multi brand total after care arm of the Ideal Group, is making rapid progress in Sri Lanka’s total after care market since the launch of the very first Ideal First Choice in July 2018. The Ideal Group of Companies is one of Sri Lanka’s leading automotive after-market service providers focusing on the premium segment of automotive brands.
Ideal First Choice is a unique concept by Ideal Group Chairman Nalin J. Welgama and Ideal Motors Director Automotive Chaminda Wanigaratne. The Ideal First Choice workshop operation is spearheaded by Deputy General Manager Lahiru Chamara Silva who has received his qualifications from The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI), the prestigious UK-based professional association for individuals working in the motor industry. He has extensive experience working for global automotive giants in Sri Lanka and abroad. He commenced with after sales service of Toyota prior to moving internationally to the UAE, where he handled Audi, and popular European brands in the United Kingdom, for a number of years. Subsequently, he returned to Sri Lanka and headed local After-sales and Technical operations, including handling of genuine spare parts, of a renowned local automotive company that marketed several top global brands including Nissan, Suzuki, New Holland, Datsun, Renault, Yamaha 2-wheelers and Yamaha Outbound.
The first Ideal First Choice workshop was launched in July 2018 in Yakkala and its network has rapidly expanded across all major cities of Sri Lanka. Currently, the Ideal First Choice hubs can be found in Puttalam, Jaffna, Tissamaharama, Kelaniya, Dambulla, Anuradhapura, Kurunegala, Ratnapura while the 10th service centre is to be opened in Galle in January 2020. All 9 existing Ideal First Choice service centres are state-of-the-art workshops that caters to all makes and models of vehicles and offers a complete range of services that includes Lubrication, Mechanical Repairs, Periodical Maintenance Service (PMS), Body and Paint, Electrical Repairs, A/C Repairs, Wheel Alignment & Wheel Balancing, Headlight Focusing, Hybrid Repairs, Tyre Repairs & Services and Roadside Assistance. It is also the only automotive after-market service provider in Sri Lanka that provides services to a full range of vehicles including motorcycles, cars, vans, light trucks, heavy trucks and even prime movers.
All services offered from Ideal First Choice are on par with manufacturers with trained technicians, workshop heads and engineers available for all brands of vehicles. The teams come from an automotive background with the technical staff having received their initial training from some of Sri Lanka’s leading vocational training institutes. The entire staff undergoes regular in-house specialised training in areas such as Technical, Hybrid and Electronic, Mechatronics, Kaizen, Supervisor Management, Quality Control Management and Diagnostic Management. As one of the leading auto care providers in Sri Lanka, Ideal First Choice conducts individual staff exams on a regular basis to test their knowledge in their areas of expertise. The Customer Services team is always available to ensure that customers get the best possible service and that their Ideal First Choice experience is at a very high level. Overall, the Human Resources Department engages with the staff regularly in order to ensure that they are well looked after and that they are happy employees who are able to deliver their best to customers at all times.
While a customer can conveniently make an appointment by calling the nearest workshop, if the customer is busy and unable to bring the vehicle to the workshop, the Ideal First Choice team will pick up the vehicle within a 5km radius, bring it to the workshop, inspect and submit a quotation for customer approval and commence on the work. After completion, the vehicle is carefully checked by the Quality Control team prior to handing over to the customer. Customers are given the opportunity to instantly rate the quality of the service prior to driving out with their vehicle. Ideal First Choice provides Ideal warranty for all kinds of repairs.
The key differentiators of Ideal First Choice are committed delivery on time, cost effective services, close follow up of customer feedback and ensuring hassle-free driving for Sri Lankan motorists. Further, free telephonic consultations on troubleshooting of electronic systems of the latest automobile diagnostic systems are also offered as value additions.
Lahiru Chamara Silva stated, “Since inception just over an year ago, Ideal First Choice has made its presence felt in the local market by providing a high-quality yet affordable service to all brands of vehicles. All 9 existing Ideal First choice outlets provide the same world-class service so that customers can drive into any outlet and receive a consistently high quality of service at all times. As a company that strongly believes in exceptional customer service, we carry out regular promotions and campaigns in different parts of the country. Through our Facebook page and other methods, we communicate with customers and inform them of upcoming promotions that they can take advantage of.”
Ideal First Choice operates an island-wide free recovery service for accident repairs and roadside assistance (RSA) at a feasible rate, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Currently, a free towing and carrier facility is offered within a 50km radius of all workshops in Colombo and Gampaha districts. Only manufacturer recommended tools and equipment are used at Ideal First Choice. Materials of the highest quality from world-renowned brand partnerships with BOSCH, AkzoNobel are associated with Ideal First Choice as co-brands. Wurth and Valvoline are sub brands that are associated with Ideal First Choice in order to provide world-class services.
Ideal Motors has Distributor Partnerships for Mahindra, Ssangyong, Chery, Apollo Tyres, Bosch genuine spare parts and Sikkens auto paint. The company also has an Exclusive Dealership with Schwing Stetter India for marketing SLM “Self-Loading Mixer” in Sri Lanka as well as handling spare parts and aftersales service to all SLM customers. Additionally, they also provide aftersales service for all other Schwing Stetter products.