Did you know that $214 billion much revenue is available to be captured by dealership service providers? Service departments looking to increase efficiency to drive profits out of that $214 billion pie are adding new tools and technologies that drive time savings, smoother processes, dealer customer loyalty, and help increase market share. Today on Inside Automotive, Cox Automotive Solution xtime Skyler Chadwick, Director of Sales Engineers, outlined five technology trends that will increase productivity and make field service more profitable.
According to the latest Cox Automotive Service Industry Study, the average number of after-sales service customer visits per year fell from 2.8 visits in 2018 to 2.3 visits in 2021. every customer in after-sales service, says Chadwick. Technology is helping auto dealerships in this area, and there are five notable trends to consider:
- Rationalization and automation
- Improve digital capabilities
- Pick-up and delivery service
- Multimedia-based communication
- Connected technologies
The overall goal, Chadwick says, is to efficiently get more vehicles through the service lane and create exceptional customer experiences. Marketing departments must also get involved. The synchronicity of digital communications and marketing can result in an average $110 increase by repair order. Having other features like ride-sharing or pickup and delivery solutions can also give you a competitive edge. In fact, 89% of consumers are willing to choose one retailer over another because of these characteristics.
Speaking more generally of the service department, auto dealerships have been challenged for years to find service technicians and advisors. Chadwick says these career paths are great options for younger generations entering the workforce. He adds that the industry will see a big transition from ICE vehicles to electric vehicles. However, dealerships will still need skilled service employees to oversee the customer journey.
In his opinion, today’s automotive technicians will not lose their jobs due to the rise of electric vehicles. Chadwick explains that the mechanical stereotype will change. The modern technician is equipped with the technology and skills for the future, but auto dealerships must begin to actively recognize the technician shortage as a whole.
Over the next three to five years, Chadwick says fixed operations managers and department heads need to step up and create teams within the dealership that are dedicated to electric vehicles. COVID-19 has also made consumers more dependent on technology than ever before, and robust communication processes are essential. Without a consistent approach in place, consumers end up getting frustrated.
Spring and summer holidays are also fast approaching and car owners are preparing their vehicles for long journeys. New technology tools help keep satisfaction and profits high during these peak times. Although overall service visits are down, the average revenue per repair order has increased over the past eight months. The travel season is a huge opportunity for after-sales service, Chadwick says. It’s time for car dealerships to invest in technology and create a better experience for their customers.
To learn more about how Xtime helps automotive dealerships optimize aftermarket operations, request a demo today.
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