As the automotive retail industry faces new challenges, forward-thinking dealerships are reimagining their business environments. One of the most obvious and natural evolutions of having socially distanced customers and workers is to leverage technology to drive a digital transformation. Here are six specific ways you can leverage Dealertrack DMS to preserve operational efficiencies, overcome economic challenges, and build your digital dealership.
1. Bring your dealership into the cloud
Some aspects of your operations require people to be present at the dealership, but many functions can be done from just about anywhere. During a time when both employees and customers appreciate being around as few people as possible, bring your dealership into the cloud and allow your employees to work remotely. Historically, this has been rare and difficult to do in automotive retail, but Dealertrack DMS can help you remove IP restrictions and allow any user with internet access and proper security credentials to log in from anywhere. For the time being, this provides a safer dealership environment for everyone.
2. Invest in training
Be productive during a time of decreased foot traffic and prepare for a future influx of customers by catching up on OEM mandated training. You can also bring employees up to speed and give them new skills and responsibilities that will benefit both them and your dealership down the road. Having capable, cross-trained employees will be necessary for running skeleton departments during periods of social distancing. Dealerships using Dealertrack DMS can take advantage of remote resources like DMS360 and on-demand and virtual training opportunities to keep learning while staying socially distanced.
3. Assess your reporting and software
As you transition to a digital dealership, now is the perfect time to assess software and reporting to ensure efficiency. Dive into your DMS to analyze what reports you’re running, but not utilizing. Find which reports you should focus on and how to keep reporting consistent between stores. Learn how to leverage underutilized or newly implemented DMS features to take advantage of new integrations with vendor partners or OEMs. Finally, make sure your software is up to date and that your current processes are aligned with your software. Dealertrack DMS customers can contact their Performance Manager for help on any software or reporting task.
4. Review your network
An optimized network will save your dealership both time and money—but only if your network is secure and stable. With more people working from home and more reliance on the digital aspects of your business, you want to make sure your network is absolutely secure (safe from a security breach) and stable, and that your operations don’t suffer as a result of network inefficiencies. And, ask whether you’re overpaying someone to manage out-of-date equipment and slow internet speeds. Dealertrack DMS offers Managed Network Services to increase performance, save money, and provide access to network professionals dedicated to optimizing your experience.
5. Implement smart technology integrations
With a reduced workforce and, look for ways to implement smart technology integrations that will allow you to consolidate processes and daily tasks. Improve efficiency by consolidating the work that was once done by multiple departments and people into more streamlined and simplified processes with your staff. Next, evaluate which tasks and jobs could be potentially outsourced to a third party with Opentrack. Integrating your technology with third-party vendors that work with your DMS can reduce the workload and friction of a reduced staff.
6. Use data to unlock insights
Find operational efficiencies and actionable insights during the economic uncertainty by streamlining your dealership’s reporting capabilities. Dealertrack users should utilize DMS Critical Analytics to find and prioritize data that drives value to their dealerships. This allows them to consolidate reports and focus on key analytics while saving time and reducing the complications and manual labor inherent with data analysis.
Building a digital dealership is the natural evolution of automotive retail, and it’s one of the best ways to maintain healthy business performance and functionality during this period of social distancing and economic downturn. If you’re already a Dealertrack DMS user, contact your Performance Manager for help identifying opportunities and creating a plan for enduring the difficulties ahead.