Nothing is more important than the health of our customers and employees. We have already implemented plans designed to protect our customers and employees and to help ensure our stores remain open for the convenience of our customers and their daily needs.We have enhanced our already comprehensive in-store cleaning and sanitization processes, and continued emphasis on proper personal hygiene, including more frequent handwashing and the proper use of hand sanitizer. We have also distributed cleaning supplies which have been EPA-certified to kill the COVID-19 virus, with instructions to increase the frequency of cleaning commonly touched surfaces, including bathrooms, touchscreens, door and cooler handles, dispensers, and pin pads.
We have been reading the messages from almost everyone about what we are supposed to do about the Covid-19 threat we are all facing and, frankly, the information is overwhelming – with almost as much misinformation as real information. What is clear to us are two main points: 1) we all need to start institutionalizing “social distancing” and (2) we have to wash our hands a lot. This imposes on Sierra a responsibility for minimizing human contact with our customers while maintaining a high level of service to our customers.
We ask any employee who is not feeling well to stay home – the same goes for our customers. We have to all adopt a personal code of self-isolating if we don’t feel well.
The basic element of social distancing is staying a minimum distance of six feet from any other person(s). We have restructured several operations to promote this separation.
To ensure proper separation in our service departments, we have instituted several new measures. First, we encourage customers to stay in their vehicles while waiting to be written up. We have greeters who direct traffic and will let guests know what their wait time should be. We feel that our guests and our staff are safest if our guests stay in their own vehicles.
The service advisor will come to our guests. We have a new tablet-based system that will let us work with our guests at their vehicles to record the guest’s concerns, obtain all the necessary information and even have our guests sign off on the work that needs to be done. If it is necessary or desirable for guests to come inside we will try to limit the number of guests inside so we don’t jeopardize our guests with a crowd at the door.
Once we have the vehicle and have properly documented our guest’s concerns, if the guest wants to wait, our waiting rooms have been rearranged to provide spacing between guests. This minimizes the number of people the waiting rooms can hold. If we require more space, we have some available in a number of places, including the showrooms and outdoor seating. Advisors should be informed if a guest is looking for additional space or more information.
Similarly for vehicle pickup, we will try to obtain payment information at write-up so we can minimize the guest’s time with us when picking up the vehicle. Again, if we can explain what we’ve done and otherwise answer questions over the phone, less interaction is required in person.