Dassault Falcon Jet Corp., a wholly owned U.S. subsidiary of Dassault Aviation SA, France, sells, services, and supports the Falcon family of business jets throughout North America, South America, and the Pacific Rim countries of Asia, including the People’s Republic of China. Dassault Aviation SA produces the Rafale fighter jet as well as the complete line of Falcon business jets. The company has assembly and production plants in France and the United States, as well as service facilities on multiple continents. It employs a total workforce of more than 12,000.
The corporation sells corporate aircraft to high-end clientele, which takes a unique skill set, Senior Manager, Spares Sales and Customer Service, Bob Fantozzi explained.
“By the nature of the price-tag on what they’re purchasing, [our clients] are very demanding,” Mr. Fantozzi said. Thus, his staff members need to be particularly detail oriented and empathic, especially when dealing with a customer who may be contending with a broken-down airplane in a location far from home.
Mr. Fantozzi inherited a department of Customer Service Representatives who had been hired primarily based on aviation industry experience, “which led to extremely bad customer experiences,” he noted.
“We were stagnant as a group,” he added. “The customer experience wasn’t getting any better, and it wasn’t getting any worse. There were two reasons why that could happen: the people and the processes. Our processes are pretty straightforward, so I had to look at the people. I then went back and started auditing what was happening…and I realized that the skill set that was hired previously wasn’t matching the requirements I was putting forth in the position.”
Therefore, he needed to augment his hiring and overall employment practices in order to attract “a higher quality employee.”
“Using Caliper has helped me and my team. I know my team, by switching to Caliper, is going to move to the best in the industry because I got better people. And having better people makes it so much easier for me.”
Bob Fantozzi, Senior Manager, Spares Sales and Customer Service, Dassault Falcon Jet
Once aware of how he must proceed in order to strengthen his organization amidst some turnover, Mr. Fantozzi took a step back and engaged in an objective analysis of his department.
“I had to make some hard choices with some long-term employees who were okay,” he said. “If you want to be okay, you stick with the status quo. I didn’t want to be just okay, so I had to make tough choices based on where I wanted to take the group, and it just came down to: I needed better people.”
As a result, Mr. Fantozzi brought Caliper on board, outlined the skills required to succeed in his environment, and used the HR-management firm’s validated personality assessment, the Caliper Profile, to make his first hires. Armed with the knowledge of what behaviors predict success in his industry, he could now isolate the characteristics Dassault Falcon Jet needed in its next wave of employees.
Four years into working with Caliper, Mr. Fantozzi has a more engaged and productive workforce. Caliper-tested employees show the flexibility to multitask and think on the fly, and they display the patience and diligence to sift through an ample inventory and locate the ideal parts for Dassault Falcon Jets clients. As a result, important indicators of success, such as customer satisfaction and employee retention, are at their highest levels to date.
Just recently, a Dassault Falcon Jet client took the time to write to Dassault Aviation SA, praising the many “fresh voices” and “standouts” Mr. Fantozzi had hired.
The client noted that Dassault Falcon Jet’s newest Customer Service hire had listened to his company’s unique predicament and, instead of putting him on hold or passing the call off, proactively sifted through notes on a specific item and ended up producing two equipment units that not only addressed the issue, but served as an upgrade. The client now was able to make his scheduled trip and “enhance the reliability of his airplane.”
“I attribute that to the quality of person I was able to employ by going through Caliper,” Mr. Fantozzi said.
Because of Dassault Falcon Jet’s collaboration with Caliper, productivity has increased. More specifically, the organization has decreased its training time by 50 percent.
Caliper-profiled hires are able to work independently in half the time of previous hires, according to Mr. Fantozzi. “It’s cutting down on mistakes, which obviously is increasing customer satisfaction because they’re getting what they want when they want it.”
Working with Caliper has allowed Dassault Falcon Jet to design, implement, and execute a world-class talent-management system.
Employee retention continues to be high.
Caliper’s involvement with Dassault Falcon Jet has had a direct and positive impact on everything from revenue, savings, and customer satisfaction.