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Tracking the Used Car Reconditioning Process

Discussion in 'Inventory Software Support & Best Practices' started by andwrig, Apr 11, 2009.

  1. andwrig

    andwrig New Member

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    Contact Management needs a better inventory management solution. I'm still struggling in that department and haven't quite found the right solution for our store yet. I'm using eCarList right now and its pretty good. And of course vAuto which is great. One big thing that I wish someone would introduce (I told Dale Pollak he should do this) is come out with a solution that effectively helps dealers manage the Used Car reconditioning process. I want my cars on the lot with picture is 72 hours. That is an ambitious goal that is often difficult to achieve. However, if i had a software solution that my UC manager, my service manager, my recon manager and my picture guy could all access to see where a car is in the process it would be huge. I would use the system to hold people accountable and even pay them a bonus based on average time it takes a car to go through the process. That is hard to manage right now by just using status code in R&R. Any suggestions? Anybody have any good ideas?
  2. JoePistell

    JoePistell Super Moderator

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    andwrig (andy?),

    Sounds like a tool I drew up a while back and never built. It's a "whereinthehellisthatcar?" tool. Each as department has its hands on it, the tool tracks it with time stamps.

    Office Manager: IN DMS ->
    UC Manager: RECEIVED -> (start the clock)
    Svc Manager: WAITING SVC -> IN SVC -> SVC DONE ->
    Recon Manager: WAITING RECON -> IN RECON -> RECON DONE -> (end the clock)
    Front Line: DONE

    You can add a branch for Body shop.

    If it's Web based then your GSM or UCM can find the lost child fast. Also, If it's web based, then your sales dept can check it for incoming inventory.

    Display:
    Stock#'s down the left column
    Stages across the top

    Seems doo-able
  3. JoePistell

    JoePistell Super Moderator

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    Something like this?

    [​IMG]
  4. AndrewDiFeo

    AndrewDiFeo Refresh Team

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    Great idea guys! And very informative spreadsheet, Joe. I remind my staff that every day a car isn't on our virtual lot, we are missing hundreds of search impressions and possible click thru's.

    With our program Hyundai's that we purchase from the auction, since most of them have relatively low miles and don't require too much in the way of scratch/dent reconditioning, we have our detail department work on the vehicle ASAP before it goes to service. This allows pictures to be taken within 24 to 48 hours from the car arriving and then service can have their fun with it.
  5. andwrig

    andwrig New Member

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    I like the spreadsheet. Its a good alternative to software. Like I said, I've been urging Dale Pollak to make something like this part of vAuto and I am sure they are working on it as a tool to promote "velocity." I am currently on a strict 60 day policy and I have migrated mostly to a 45 day turn policy. The excuse I always hear from a UCM or GSM when I mark a car for auction is that they "didn't get the car until the 20th day in stock" because of service or recon or the body shop, etc. But the market doesn't care where the car is in your recon process when it comes to depreciation so what ever its true age, that is its true age. If something like this could give me the ability pay a bonus to my Recon Manager and Service Manager for getting cars through the shop, the quicker we get them pictured and like Andrew said, the more impressions we get and possible CTR on our website, cars.com, etc.

    Good stuff.

    Thanks Joe.

    Andy Wright (andwrig)
  6. Alex Snyder

    Alex Snyder Administrator Staff Member

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  7. JoePistell

    JoePistell Super Moderator

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    Andy,

    The SS above is a model for the concept. I wrote in my original post (above the ss), it's best if it's a web based platform to allow everyone to access it and to profit from it.

    If the SS model above is all you need, than it's a fairly simple project. Pass the vAuto boyz the link to this thread and hopefully they can see it's an easy task with some low hanging fruit for them.


    Joe Pistell
    p.s. If you dont need "real-time" info, a cheap and easy way to do it is to use a simple employee payroll time card machine. Place one in each department, punch out time is all you need to track. Have your office track it on a SS.

    Hope this helps,
    Joe Pistell
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2009
  8. JoePistell

    JoePistell Super Moderator

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    If the vAuto boys bite on the project, best case, the DMS entry drives the lists creation. THEN, if they really like it, they can use their really cool merchansing tool to track the last stage of the effort, getting it up on the web!

    I've added another column to track that last

    [​IMG]


    Andy, Keep on with your idea! This is a natual addition to the vauto Merchansiing tool (and you can tell Dale I give your idea 2 thumbs up.... way up!)

    Good Luck,
    Joe
  9. mattwatson81

    mattwatson81 Getting Refreshed

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    Well since our software (VinSolutions) already manages most other aspects of inventory management we could easily add this type of functionality to our inventory product. If anyone is interested in creating this type of functionality let me know! Our entire system is built on customer requests and feedback.
  10. Mitch Gallant

    Mitch Gallant Refresh Team

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    Very Cool! If the used car manager processing the incoming vehicles had a simple fob and proximity scanner setup it could streamline things I think.

    Given you set up a scanner at the used car managers office, service advisers desk, and one in detail (if there's a computer in detail) you could attach a fob to the keyring and swipe it to pull up that vehicle in the program, then either automatically or by one mouse click it would advance to the next stage. Fobs could be recycled and there at most $5 a piece with the scanners being around $50. Maybe a little too technical but anything that makes it easier for the guys working is worth it.
  11. carla12

    carla12 New Member

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    By providing an incentive to the used-car manager for low loss ratios, you will create a partnership that will keep balance in the reconditioning process. Your manager will focus on spending the right money on reconditioning, not spending the least money.


    ________________
    Denver Used Car
  12. JoePistell

    JoePistell Super Moderator

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    I keep thinking about this inventory management SS. Any body got an automated system yet? It would make a great ReyRey add on.
  13. Craig

    Craig New Member

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    Joe,
    vAuto is in the process of releasing the "lifecycle tab" within vAuto that tracks descriptions, photos, window stickers, pricing and can be set up to track recon with all but recon being monitored by when something happens digitally. The only issue with tracking reconditioning is someone needs to update it. Very cool and very close to live.
  14. danoneil

    danoneil New Member

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    Andy,

    How many used cars does your dealership receive or recondition in a month ? Just curious.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2009
  15. andwrig

    andwrig New Member

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    100-250 depending on the month
  16. andwrig

    andwrig New Member

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    Hey Guys

    The vAuto Lifecycle Management tool is a great start. It's gonna be officially launched at NADA so be sure and check it out if you are down there. I think they are still tweaking some bugs but its a really advanced starting point for this type of process/results driven software. No one else is doing this right now. Other vendors including some DNS companies are looking at this so don't be surprised if you see more entrants in this arena in the not too distant future.

    Andy
  17. AutoArchitech

    AutoArchitech New Member

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    but what happens when the Vauto report is wrong? I am surprised by the number of times Vauto will say a car is not on Auto Trader or Cars.com but when you go to the website the car is there...

    What happens when Vauto says the car does not have stickers and it actually does? I would think it makes more sense to look at the car and see where it is inthe process instead of looking at a program.
  18. Josse Erik

    Josse Erik New Member

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    ReconPro is a revolutionary computer system developed specifically for recon companies. It uses cell phones or handheld computers to identify, estimate, book, and bill reconditioning work, including integration with QuickBooks and other accounting software. The system tracks every vehicle serviced by its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), creating customized reports that allow the recon company owner to quickly see revenue and profit, and track sales and service by each individual.window tint los angeles
  19. stever

    stever New Member

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    Does anyone have any other good solutions to this yet?
  20. bzweifel

    bzweifel New Member

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    Welcome to the club, Stever.

    vauto does all of this and you can even build custom "Milestones" for each stage of the vehicle life cycle that you want to be tracked.

    vAuto - Live Market View

    their reps are by region, so I don't know who yours would be. Ed Brooks represents them on this forum and Steve Willis is my rep, I have no problem recommending either of them. I'm sure Ed would be happy to answer any question you have. So feel free to as for follow up information to help you decide if it’s right for your situation.

    *If this sounds like I'm promoting vAuto, it's because I am. Dealers have to weed through way too much BS to find quality products/vendors. I don't mind passing out the koolaid for the good ones. I do not represent them and I do not get compensated from them.
    1 person likes this.

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