When Susan Moll, Sr. Director of Field Services for Cox Auto, sat down with the team at Jim Browne Auto Group, it was clear they were struggling with their technology investments. The dealership group, had grown to six franchise locations and was proud of their success. However, several challenges with their technology were beginning to cause concern within the group. They could accomplish their goals, but simple processes like emailing customers or communicating across locations could take days. On top of everything, the team was pouring money into their technology expenditures. It was time for a DMS change. Fast-forward nine months, and the team took the opportunity to look back on their technology transition. You can listen to the full interview here, and take a look at the top technology challenges that ultimately drove their decision to make the change below.
Dealerships need a way to connect with their customers: past, present, and potential. Having a database where your customer information is retained, or a customer retention management tool, is a standard practice of any business. But more importantly, Jim Browne Auto Group needed to find a way to connect their CRM database to the other technology tools they were paying for. According to Sam Rhineberger, “The user experience was cumbersome…the functionality wasn’t great for what we wanted to accomplish in terms of customer-facing communications.” It could take up to three days simply to send an email. By that point, a customer could have shopped a competitor’s dealership.
Lack of Integrations
Any dealership salesperson or manager who works at a franchise, with multiple stores and locations, knows the challenges of communicating between disconnected systems. If your technologies don’t “talk” to each other, they’re not doing their job. For Jim Browne Auto Group, finding the perfect vehicle for their buyers was becoming difficult on their old DMS. If they couldn’t keep track of changing inventories, pricing, and offers up-to-the-minute, then they were never quite sure if they could offer the best deal. That was a big, big problem.
High Price Point
To further the problem, Jim Browne Auto Group was paying high integration fees for each system—and location—they utilized. A study shows that average dealerships now use up to seven technology platforms simply to complete a sale. With average fees of $500/per system, dealers can expect to spend $42,000 every year on third-party integration fees!
Making a big decision, like changing to a new Dealer Management System, doesn’t happen lightly. But dealers are facing big challenges. The challenges that Jim Browne Auto Group was facing were impacting their daily operations and processes. Their sales process was beginning to feel the burden of slow, outdated technology, and it was resulting in a customer experience that wasn’t meeting the high standard of the auto group. Taken together, these challenges made the case for a change. See more from the team and learn what it took to prepare for the switch, and what happened after, in the recorded webinar.