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June 20, 2017

Connecting the aftermarket – Automechanika Birmingham 2017

With the rapid evolution of technology in the automotive industry, it’s important that the aftermarket is able to keep up. At this year’s Automechanika Birmingham, Autodata’s Chief Innovation & Strategy Officer, Max Lienard shared insights into the increasingly data-driven automotive industry and how the aftermarket can turn challenges into new opportunities by becoming smarter and more connected.

There are so many challenges affecting the aftermarket today – from right to repair to new vehicle technology. Rather than fearing these challenges, workshops need to be more proactive by embracing the technology available to them to remain competitive.

Get your tools right!

It’s basic business practice to review your business methods, whether it be annually or more often. If you don’t review your workshop’s practices regularly, you should!

Do you ever stop to ask yourself if your practices are adding value to your workshop and for your customers? Whether it’s a task or a tool, it’s very easy to keep doing things the same way because it works. However, we should always ask ourselves, is there a better, more efficient way to do this?

The answer is often ‘Yes’!

To keep up with the evolution of the industry, you first need to get your tools right. From integrating popular technology into your workshops such as Wi-Fi and tablets to more workshop-focused tools such as technical information software and garage management systems.

Believe it or not, you’re not saving money by not taking the time to review your workshop. You’re also not saving money by always choosing the cheapest option – the saying ‘you get what you pay for’ is evident in aftermarket tools. The right tools can save technicians so much time, speeding up the time it takes to work on each vehicle; allowing workshops to work on more vehicles in less time.

Are you using your tools to their full potential?

So, you have all the right tools! Are you using them correctly and to their full potential?

Let’s take our online workshop application for example. 73% of workshops in the UK use Autodata, but not all subscribers are using Autodata to its full potential. From time-saving features such as VRM search and the estimate calculator, to our diagnostics module that provides technical fixes to common faults and Assist Me – our systematic diagnostic guide, there are many Autodata features that workshops can take advantage of to increase efficiency and competitivity.

It’s the same concept with all workshop tools, investing time in your workshop can only make it more effective. Take time to find out what your tools are capable of and enhance the tools you already have – for instance, technicians are your workshop’s most valuable resource. Investing in training to ensure that your technicians are equipped with the most advanced technology and techniques, can take your workshop from just surviving to thriving.

Transform and innovate

You have the right tools and you are using them correctly – now it’s time to look into the future.

Everything around us is changing. Vehicles are now more computers than motors – the variety of vehicles has never been so vast and the rate of new technology being introduced in the Automotive industry has never been this rapid.

Aligning your workshop’s resources will enable you to build and maintain relationships with customers; it enables you to be more proactive because you know which services your customers’ vehicles need and when they need it, allowing you to efficiently generate repeat business and so much more. With information, the possibilities for transforming your workshop into a highly competitive and sustainable business are tremendous.

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