Unified Communications at the 2014 NADA Convention

nec-uc-automotive-industry-solutionsAs many of you know, the National Automotive Dealers Association (NADA) is holding their annual conference in New Orleans, Louisiana this year. The conference is always the automotive industry event of the year, and if you are attending or have looked at the line-up of guest speakers and session topics, you’ll know 2014 is not disappointing.

With attendance topping 21,000 dealers from around the world, this year’s convention is featuring hundreds of exhibitors showcasing their latest equipment, services, and technology. The conference has also offered an additional treat this year, as dealers have been given the rare chance to meet face-to-face with executives from several major auto manufacturers.

The prevailing need to cut costs and increase sales and service productivity is affecting all dealerships right now. Unified Communications (UC) technology offers a unique way to accomplish both tasks while additionally increasing overall customer satisfaction and Customer Service Index (CSI) scores.

One of the top trends at this year’s convention has been improving business processes with technology and software. This theme looks to have trickled down into many of the session discussions. Session topics have covered advanced digital marketing, dealer data protection, customer relationship management, and mobile device integration. All of these sessions have been designed to educate dealers who are not utilizing, or are interested in learning more about these technologies.

What attendees might yet find surprising, is that a good Unified Communications and Collaboration solution can actually help solve many of the challenges facing today’s dealers and salesmen.

The UC technology in question includes contact centers, IP Telephony, collaboration software, and more. UC can easily shorten your response times to customers, increase your revenues, and lower your operating costs, enabling your dealership to become more efficient and productive with one software application.

Customer Engagement

Sales depend on quick and effective communication. When a prospect or existing customer calls your dealership or walks into your showroom, you want to make the best impression that you can and answer any and all questions the customer may have with ease.

Unified Communications Solutions ensure that messages from customers are handled as expediently as possible. UC offers features such as:

  • advanced presence capabilities that allow receptionists to see which sales people are available to meet with a walk-in customer,
  • enhanced mobility that enable personnel to be available from any location and device,
  • and instant messaging that offers a quick way to communicate with colleagues.

Customer Service

Your service department is your main revenue driver (no pun intended). The success of your service department depends on having the right information and the right tools at hand to complete a job. If your service department cannot quickly communicate with salesmen on the floor, with other dealerships, or with customers, then one of your businesses biggest assets becomes inefficient and unprofitable.

Unified Communications technology provides auto dealers with collaborative tools that can keep customers, service, and other dealership personnel in communication with each other easily. Customer service features include:

  • appointment reminders that reduce any missed sales appointments or last-minute cancellations resulting in increased revenue,
  • integrated Interactive Voice Response (IVR) capabilities that provide self-service options to callers, giving them alternatives to waiting or hanging up,
  • one number reachability that enables you to contact your co-workers using their main extensions,
  • and real-time snapshots of the contact center delivered via dashboards to service managers.

Staff Productivity

Whether you work on the show floor or in the front office, achieving customer service success means you have to be an efficient communicator. NEC’s Staff Productivity solutions provide you and your staff with efficient communication and automation of routine management tasks, thereby improving your dealerships’ responsiveness to customers’ needs. Some of the staff productivity features include:

  • management and operation of a desktop telephone from your PC for easy speed dialing, call management, contact lookup, and seamless CRM integration,
  • unified messaging allowing all faxes, e-mails and voice messages to be accessible from one inbox, anywhere,
  • a fully-integrated directory system that provides real-time customer information to receptionists and other personnel, enabling them to deliver enhanced and personalized services,
  • and intuitive, modular-designed telephones that can be tailored to each individual role.

To learn more about how Unified Communications, contact center, and mobility can help your dealership increase efficiency, productivity and revenue, visit us at booth number 5246 at the New Orleans Convention Center this weekend.  If you can’t make it to the NADA conference, you can read more about NEC’s solutions for the automotive industry here.

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Improving Communications for Automotive Dealers

NEC recently attended the 2013 National Automotive Dealers Association (NADA) Conference in Orlando, Florida. The NADA Convention is the automotive industry event of the year and the world’s largest international gathering place for franchised new-vehicle dealers.

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NEC participated with Phillip Sherman, CEO of Telecom Advisors Group, Inc. and one of the leading independent automotive industry technology consultants in the nation.

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Like many companies today, auto dealerships are interested in the best ways to cut costs and increase the productivity of their sales team and services advisors. The NADA convention gave the perfect opportunity to show the ROI of Unified Communications (UC) technology and demonstrate how it helps the rapidly growing automotive industry reduce cost, improve productivity, and increase customer satisfaction. Customer Satisfaction is important in any industry, but particularly in the automotive industry, which relies heavily on its Customer Service Index (CSI) score. For example, JD Power and Associates reported that dealerships with high CSI scores during the first three years of ownership retained 79 percent of dollars spent on maintenance and repairs during the first five years of vehicle ownership.

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The auto industry is heavily impacted by technology to help make improvements for both the dealer and the customer. NEC employees were also on hand demonstrating our communications solutions to more than 20,000 conference attendees. With the need for uninterrupted roaming and productivity from any location within a dealership, applications that allow cellular and Wi-Fi roaming were of key interest to attendees. For those automotive dealerships tired of losing revenue due to appointment no-shows, we demonstrated our Appointment Reminder to show them how to alleviate this frustration by simplifying the appointment reminder process and communicating with their customers more efficiently. In the auto sales environment, responding to and distributing call-in and internet leads is critically important. Leveraging contact center technology that queues, distributes and tracks customer opportunities provides dealers with a competitive advantage and the ability to respond as quickly as possible.

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To learn how uMobility or Appointment Reminder can enhance your organization click below.

NEC Appointment Reminder

  NEC Fixed Mobile Convergence