General Motors is scouring social media to find potential defects

Article by Andrew Christian, on November 26, 2014

General Motors taking its efforts to search for customer complaints and identify quality issues to the social media, aiming to address them before they could blow up into a crisis. GM wants to avert another disaster like the crisis it is facing now – in which it is recalling millions of vehicles fitted with faulty ignition switches. It is also under intense scrutiny and is facing hordes of lawsuit for delaying a recall of those vehicles.

GM President Dan Ammann told Bloomberg in an interview that the carmaker is scouring every source of information to avert another crisis, tasking social-media managers, customer service staff and high-rank executives to find early warning signs from vehicle owners.

In fact, Amman and GM chief executive Mary Barra themselves are calling some vehicle owners to get their feedback. GM has even encouraged its employees to alert top management if they spot possible recalls. "We have to identify issues before they become a problem," Ammann said.

While GM still uses official complaints filed with with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to search for any problem, it has gone beyond that, even tapping people to monitor social media 24/7 hours a day as well as monitor complaints from dealers.

When a possible defect is detected, the carmaker will then probe and try to locate it before it becomes prevalent.

This setting is in sharp contrast to GM’s actions before, when its engineers tried to avoid issuing a safety recall for the ignition switch although they have seen proofs of a possible issue.

Despite receiving numerous complaints about the faulty switch over the past decade, GM didn't issue a recall until February 2014.

Topics: gm

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