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“Why so much paper?” – Running the paperless dealership

Eliminating the need to produce, scan, destroy, archive, and recover hundreds of documents every day, is a huge opportunity for dealers. In doing so, they’re able to streamline processes, boost the availability, accuracy, and security of information, as well as save the environment…and money. So, why are dealerships still filled with the sound of rustling paper?

Let’s look at the scale of the issue and the reasons why a dealership should consider going paperless, with urgency. Firstly, by vastly eliminating paper in just one dealership – through digitalising processes such as invoicing, test drive documentation, deal files, and job cards – a dealer can expect to save around £200,000 over five or six years. That’s over £30,000 per year saved on toner, paper, on and off-site storage, shredding, and secure disposal.

Now let’s look at the impact on processes, efficiencies, and customer experience. To save money and protect the environment, this requires a workflow of paperless processes to be embedded throughout the business. Pinewood DMS offers a great solution for this.

For example, in the purchase ledger, dealers can scan, authorise, code, match and attach supplier invoices to postings in Pinewood DMS, flagging them for electronic authorisation. This eliminates relying on the printed documentation reaching the correct person, in order to be authorised. There’s no need to file or scan documents into the DMS, which reduces paper consumption and administration.

Pinewood’s role-based apps deliver an improved user experience. Dealership staff can work more efficiently and deliver excellent customer service through fully paperless processes. This includes streamlining payments using either Pinewood’s open banking integration with Vyne, or through Pinewood’s Pay+ app for card payments. This reduces the inefficiencies resulting from paper-heavy processes.

Mark Lambird, Managing Director at Eastbourne Motoring Centre, explains the impact Pay+ has had on his business:

“Previously, we would write out a daily till sheet and someone was running to and fro trying to put the payments and the transactions together. It all integrates so easily now. You can take deposits and payments. It goes straight to the job number, so it’s made life a lot easier having Pay+.”

In the workshop, technicians can use the Tech+ app to conduct a VHC entirely on their mobile device, use digital job cards, and capture a picture of any paper documents, which they can upload straight to the DMS.

Similarly, aftersales staff can benefit from Pinewood’s Host+ app. Closely aligned with Tech+, it facilitates improved communication between service advisors and technicians. When the customer arrives at the dealership, a service advisor can approve the job, confirm the vehicle mileage, check the work requirements, and amend the pickup time from their handheld device. Following this, they can record an arrival video with the customer, highlighting damage or areas requiring attention. They can also capture an eSignature to approve any additional work, which syncs to the customer record. Technicians can view these details in Tech+ as they complete the full VHC.

Outside of the workshop, Host+ also supports sales staff to provide a seamless experience from the first moment of interaction, through to the completion of a sale. Capturing an eSignature for test drive declarations is fast and easy. Customers can sign on a tablet device, again saving it to the CRM record.

Neville Briggs, Managing Director at Pinewood explains:

This allows dealers to fully focus on their customers. Gone is the impracticality and hassle of dealing with a mountain of paperwork. A fully digital approach brings much more than just environmental benefits for dealerships.”

Stocktakes are also simplified and paperless. Dealers can use the Stock+ app to scan VINs using the camera on their mobile device, to log vehicle locations instead of using a tick sheet. They can also capture a picture of any paper documents, saving them directly to the stock card or CRM record. This removes the need for manual filing.

Finally, Pinewood DMS lets dealers submit VAT returns electronically, in line with HMRC’s Making Tax Digital legislation.

Pinewood will continue to focus on eliminating paper, benefitting tens of thousands of users, increasing dealer profitability, and helping to protect the environment.

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