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Work at home BDC??

dcolon02

Noob
Jul 8, 2013
13
0
1
Orlando, Florida
First Name
Daniel
I am a BDC Director for huge privately owned dealership and space has recently become an issue with our growth. I was pondering a work at home agent to eliminate this and create better attendance. Not that attendance is an issue but with people being at home the chances of them calling out or being late is minimal. Its a savings across the board for both the dealership and the agents. Let me know your thoughts. Thank you.

Daniel Colon
Greenway Automotive
 
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ryan.leslie

Sr. Refresher
Apr 20, 2009
590
520
93
St. Louis, MO
First Name
Ryan
Interesting topic with the somewhat recent news of Marissa Mayer's decision to retract the remote workforce at Yahoo. My comments won't relate directly to BDC, but I think they are relevant.

I've worked remotely for 12 years and don't think I could go back. I'm at my desk within one cup of coffee in the morning and the last thing I do before heading to bed is check email. Traffic jams on my way to the office consist of a dog trying to decide which way to go on the stairs. :) Work is "always on" for me in a healthy way and I know I would struggle to return to a typical office environment. I like always being at work.

I've managed a remote workforce over the course of my career too and I'd offer the following advice. It isn't for everybody. It requires an individual that is intrinsically motivated and generally task oriented. That said, those that can succeed in a remote environment tend to thrive in a remote environment. There are a lot of distractions in a typical office environment that do not exist at a home office, especially for "social" employees that watercooler as much as they work. There are distinct pros and cons to both work environments.

The tools and technology to hold them accountable is the easy part. VOIP phones register calls and call times etc, you just need to identify the means to preserve the same tracking methodologies whether the team member is remote or in the office and hold them accountable to the same volume you would in the office.

It sounds like you have the perfect environment to dip a toe in the water without jumping in head first. Could "home office day" be a motivational tool for your team? What if you only offered it to top performers and made it a coveted reward that others worked towards? You could set the stage for improved performance across the team and alleviate some congestion too. WIN WIN! If you are tracking the success metrics you'll quickly figure out who is capable of the perceived increase in freedom to perform and who needs the structured environment that clocking in at the office provides.

Hopefully this was helpful to you in some way. I'd say give it a shot for a few weeks with a trusted performer or two that don't need persistent direction and track their results. Happy to talk more with you about managing a remote workforce too if that would be helpful. Good Luck!

Ryan
 
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Reactions: Mike Robbins

dcolon02

Noob
Jul 8, 2013
13
0
1
Orlando, Florida
First Name
Daniel
Interesting topic with the somewhat recent news of Marissa Mayer's decision to retract the remote workforce at Yahoo. My comments won't relate directly to BDC, but I think they are relevant.

I've worked remotely for 12 years and don't think I could go back. I'm at my desk within one cup of coffee in the morning and the last thing I do before heading to bed is check email. Traffic jams on my way to the office consist of a dog trying to decide which way to go on the stairs. :) Work is "always on" for me in a healthy way and I know I would struggle to return to a typical office environment. I like always being at work.

I've managed a remote workforce over the course of my career too and I'd offer the following advice. It isn't for everybody. It requires an individual that is intrinsically motivated and generally task oriented. That said, those that can succeed in a remote environment tend to thrive in a remote environment. There are a lot of distractions in a typical office environment that do not exist at a home office, especially for "social" employees that watercooler as much as they work. There are distinct pros and cons to both work environments.

The tools and technology to hold them accountable is the easy part. VOIP phones register calls and call times etc, you just need to identify the means to preserve the same tracking methodologies whether the team member is remote or in the office and hold them accountable to the same volume you would in the office.

It sounds like you have the perfect environment to dip a toe in the water without jumping in head first. Could "home office day" be a motivational tool for your team? What if you only offered it to top performers and made it a coveted reward that others worked towards? You could set the stage for improved performance across the team and alleviate some congestion too. WIN WIN! If you are tracking the success metrics you'll quickly figure out who is capable of the perceived increase in freedom to perform and who needs the structured environment that clocking in at the office provides.

Hopefully this was helpful to you in some way. I'd say give it a shot for a few weeks with a trusted performer or two that don't need persistent direction and track their results. Happy to talk more with you about managing a remote workforce too if that would be helpful. Good Luck!

Ryan

Currently I have a VoIP system that was installed last year and I track everything and I mean everything. I also have third party software that allows me to dissect the information for dealerships specifically. I used to manage an at home program in a previous life but was wondering if anyone had attempted this with a Automotive BDC. Thanks for your response. Im excited to take this on but I know it will not be easy. It requires webcams, site visits and a lot of other equipment. but I just think given my current culture established this could be the new option for BDC's in the future. If the hospitality industry can why cant we in automotive.
 

skeetle

Getting Refreshed
Apr 4, 2011
64
29
18
Harrisburg, PA
First Name
Megan
I can see it happening. I know BDC's for many stores which are at a centralized location. Make sure there aren't any "outside distractions." Such as a dog barking or a baby crying - hearing those in the background could be a real turn-off to the customers.

We use Google Chat (or do they call it "Hangouts" now - whichever) & it's very useful when trying to reach the Desk Managers at a different store.

If you have people you can trust to work hard and not spend their days watching The Price Is Right - I don't see why it can't work!
 

Jerry Thibeau

Sr. Refresher
Apr 28, 2009
1,175
363
113
First Name
Jerry
I don't think it will work.

1. Too many distractions!
2. Call comes in they will hope somebody else takes it.
3. Like you said, babies, dogs and other household noises.
4. Outbound call production will diminish.
5. I would never pay somebody an hourly wage to work from home, has to be performance based.
6. Like Ryan said, tough to find good people who can work from home and stay on task.
 

dcolon02

Noob
Jul 8, 2013
13
0
1
Orlando, Florida
First Name
Daniel
I can see it happening. I know BDC's for many stores which are at a centralized location. Make sure there aren't any "outside distractions." Such as a dog barking or a baby crying - hearing those in the background could be a real turn-off to the customers.

We use Google Chat (or do they call it "Hangouts" now - whichever) & it's very useful when trying to reach the Desk Managers at a different store.

If you have people you can trust to work hard and not spend their days watching The Price Is Right - I don't see why it can't work!

So true. I have great agents and I know they will love this. Thank you.
 

dcolon02

Noob
Jul 8, 2013
13
0
1
Orlando, Florida
First Name
Daniel
I don't think it will work.

1. Too many distractions!
2. Call comes in they will hope somebody else takes it.
3. Like you said, babies, dogs and other household noises.
4. Outbound call production will diminish.
5. I would never pay somebody an hourly wage to work from home, has to be performance based.
6. Like Ryan said, tough to find good people who can work from home and stay on task.
Jerry,

Thanks for your feedback. I think the above mentioned depends on the people you have working for you and the culture created. When I did it for Wyndham Worldwide we had frequent chats and never had any issues with performance. Again I think its depends on the people. I dont hire people that have done "dealership" work before so my outlook is different. My pay plan is hourly based but mostly bonus related so in essence it is performance based.
 
Jun 24, 2016
1
0
1
First Name
David
Hello, I implemented a BDC for a GM franchise and ran it for 3 years. Sales are down for the dealer they fired the Sales Manager and brought the BDC in house due to pressure from GM. This model works but if there is one thing that was verified.....Salespeople are still lazy and don't make the calls and only look for the up coming in the front door.
 

Jeff Kershner

Founder
May 1, 2005
3,627
1,227
113
Maryland
First Name
Jeff
Hello, I implemented a BDC for a GM franchise and ran it for 3 years. Sales are down for the dealer they fired the Sales Manager and brought the BDC in house due to pressure from GM. This model works but if there is one thing that was verified.....Salespeople are still lazy and don't make the calls and only look for the up coming in the front door.
Hard to disagree with you. What do you think... 1 out of every 10 sales representatives has tbat entrepreneurial spirit and is willing to learn the industry and the art of sales?

Too generous?
 

BHavican

Refresher
Jan 11, 2013
117
40
28
Illinois
First Name
Bill
If I'm managing a BDC staff I want to be in the room with them. Regardless what I'm doing or working on, I'm always listening to our reps' conversations to give positive reinforcement, encouragement, training, or grab the phone for a T.O. While there are a few great partners out there that do a tremendous job evaluating phone calls, sometimes waiting 5 minutes to intervene can be too late.

The other part of it is that it makes you and your staff feel like you're all one big team. I never have a desire for my own office. Even as a desk manager, I've taken up spots on at the receptionist desk and even a normal sales desk.

I'm sure there are highly skilled people that can make this work, but it's not for me.

Salespeople are still lazy and don't make the calls and only look for the up coming in the front door.
Behind every lazy salesperson is an equally lazy sales manager.