Technology change is inevitable. Whether switching to a new DMS or just adapting to changes that come with technology advancement, change is coming for every controller and every accounting office at every dealership. Ironically, controllers and accounting offices are among those that are most resistant to change, even though they arguably have the biggest impact on how technology is implemented and used at the dealership level. Consider the following ways you and your accounting team can embrace change and technology to become a more efficient and profitable dealership.
Know the Purpose of Technology
Technology in general, and your DMS technology more specifically, is so much more than just a means of crunching numbers and accomplishing a list of day-to-day, month-end, or year-end tasks. Your DMS technology can be the key to unlocking increases in efficiency and profitability, as well as dealership growth.
When your accounting team (and every dealership employee for that matter) can see that there are better ways to accomplish what you’re doing, and clearly see the steps that come after yours, you can begin to see how your work plays a vital role in the larger work of the dealership.
Coincidentally, the right technology can help you take a step back to see the bigger dealership picture and how your work (and your technology) can benefit the dealership as a whole and every employee individually.
Improve Employee Onboarding and Retention
Auto sales is a high turnover business. Finding and keeping top employees is a battle every dealership fights on an ongoing basis. Every dealership is trying to find the secret to preventing turnover, not only because it can be damaging to sales continuity and workplace culture, but because it’s incredibly expensive. Accounting offices will appreciate that turnover costs dealerships an average of nearly $439,000 every year, according to DrivingSales research. Although there may not be a single solution to this complex (and expensive) problem, certainly one answer involves improving technology.
When dealerships work with employees by giving them a structured onboarding program—that involves training them over the course of several months, staying engaged with them, and following up to track progress and address concerns—employees can begin to see their role in the overall dealership plan. Working with a technology provider that’s willing to take part in employee progress is vital. This happens not only by providing the latest and greatest tech advancements, but by facilitating workflows, speeding up tasks, removing friction and redundancies, and lending perspective to how every dealership department connects. It also happens when technology providers facilitate opportunities to network with industry peers, either through a dedicated platform or industry education events. All of this helps new hires to work toward bigger-picture dealership goals, giving them a larger sense of purpose, which drives efficiency, job satisfaction, and ultimately dealer profits.
Improve the Customer Experience and Facilitate Flexible Buying Experiences
As modern customer preferences for car shopping change, dealerships and their technologies need to adapt. Today’s customers are preconditioned to expect convenient, online shopping experiences in every area of their lives, and they won’t put up with dealerships that seem stuck in the past. Instead, they’ll find another dealership that offers the kind of hybrid online/in-store shopping experience they’re looking for.
These new kinds of car shopping and buying experiences are only possible if a dealership’s technologies work together. When a DMS seamlessly integrates with other dealership technologies to share information between platforms, customers get the convenience of starting a deal online and continuing it anywhere they want, including at the dealership. This is the next generation of car shopping, and dealerships that embrace technology changes can stay in step with their customers to boost efficiency and profitability.
As accounting offices understand how technology benefits the entire dealership, by improving employee onboarding and retention and the customer/sales experience, dealerships can embrace changes and adapt alongside their employees, their customers, and technology itself to become more efficient and profitable. With the right perspective and the right technology, that’s a big-picture benefit that ultimately helps the accounting office too.