The less you ask technicians to manually report on vehicle status, the smoother your used vehicle reconditioning process will run, and the faster those cars will be ready to sell.
- Human error and indifference can cause recon bottlenecks
- These bottlenecks reduce the sale value of used vehicle inventory
- Automation reduces these slowdowns and helps sell cars faster
- ReconVelocity has the technology to make it happen
Whenever you acquire a vehicle destined for your used car lot, some repairs will be necessary before it’s ready to sell. After all, it’s incredibly rare that you come across a used car that’s in perfect condition and can bypass reconditioning work.
Any period a car sits idling in your garage costs your dealership money. This wastes some of the vehicle’s ideal retail window when you can expect to earn maximum gross profits, which is something most dealerships can’t afford. Human error is a significant part of idling time because your technicians have to communicate and ensure the car gets where it needs to go next.
Here’s a look at how automation can speed up the vehicle reconditioning process and make sure cars are getting to retail and sold as fast as possible.
What typically happens during dealership reconditioning
In a perfect world, you wouldn’t have to worry about idling times when reconditioning a vehicle. A scenario where every vehicle receives inspection and an RO within minutes of arriving on the lot would make a dealership manager’s life much easier.
From there, the hope is that the car transfers seamlessly to your service department for mechanical and bodywork. Next, it is detailed and photographed before hitting the lot. You also want to get those pictures online ASAP because internet marketing is a significant driver of sales.
Unfortunately, this scenario is often slower than it should be because so many different groups have to come together to make it happen.
The vehicle will move between different technicians at every stop, and it might even leave the dealership for a time if you use third-party vendors for some of this work. When a mechanic doesn’t let your autobody technician know a car is on the way, or your third-party vendors don’t bother informing you that detailing is complete, it creates a slowdown.
You also run the risk of competing with the general public for service department resources, particularly if your technicians don’t make recon work their top priority.
Any time a department completes an action, the next group needs this information. If that isn’t happening, you’ll run into problems getting vehicles ready for sale.
Why recon slows down
Before coming up with a solution, it’s a good idea to learn why your various technicians struggle to stay in communication.
Perhaps the top reason is that they don’t see the value in moving a vehicle through the recon process as quickly as possible. This makes sense from their point of view because these employees aren’t selling the cars; they’re repairing them. To them, as long as the car looks good and runs well, they’re doing their jobs.
You could also run into technician indifference after completing their portion of the job. An autobody repairperson doesn’t care about the detailing work that follows. This person is more focused on the next vehicle that requires their attention.
As a result, your autobody mechanic might not be in any rush to communicate with the vendor handling detailing. This scenario means the car could sit idle for hours, or even days, before reaching the next recon step, which eats into your profits.
You can blame this bottleneck laziness, human error, or employee indifference, but the result is a less profitable vehicle sale for your dealership every time it happens. As a manager, your job is to eliminate these slowdowns and get fresh inventory moving through your service departments and outside vendors as quickly as possible.
This task might be challenging, but it isn’t impossible if you have a plan.
The power of automation
On the surface, automating your recon reporting sounds almost too simple. Of course, why wouldn’t you want to automate processes where human error can create slowdowns and cost you money? But how do you do it?
The key is using software that automatically records each stage of the reconditioning process and reports it to the next group responsible for that vehicle, providing real-time updates to everyone who needs to contribute to getting the car ready for the lot. Through this kind of software, your service departments and third-party vendors will know when it’s their turn to complete a step, so they aren’t relying on other technicians to inform them of the progress.
ReconVelocity’s automated auto recon platform creates a transparent and efficient vehicle reconditioning process. This technology allows you to identify and address bottlenecks while keeping all members of your team in constant communication.
The software’s VelocityLocation feature automates the reporting process, too. So, even if a technician forgets to report the job is done, the technology will let the rest of your team know they’re done and keep the cycle moving.
Contact ReconVelocity to request a demo, view our state-of-the-art recon solutions, or talk to one of our recon experts.