Let us have a conversation about Budgets. As a DealerNerd, I am simply a pure expense along with everything else I do. I’m a million-dollar department. I have no potential of providing a billable service to our dealer’s customers. From a Math (Nerd) standpoint, the dealer needs to make 10,000,000 to support my techno habits.
So where do you start? I started by taking the Accountant out to lunch. This person and position hold more power than any General Manager or Owner. They have the innate ability to make you seem too expensive. He also holds the keys to the complicated chart of Accounts. The Accountants ISAKMP Key. Tell them you are trying to save money and need to look at expenses. Many of them enjoy saving money.
Once you have some expense reports, convert them to a spreadsheet. More-then-likely you will receive this report on continuous paper. After three inches later, Sort Descending.
You will find that this is a complete waste of time. Cancel your $20,000-30,000 a month DMS and get DealerTrack.
Has anyone created or even dreamed up an Open source DMS? Has the big DMS Giants been keeping us back from achieve a dream? Truth be told, they have. The giants have this “Validation” strategy with the vehicle manufactures. You see, the Manufactures believe that dealerships data can corrupt their day to day operations. It’s like anti-virus for ordering a vehicle. RIDICULOUS!
If we could recreate a universal database, open the network without compromising security and re-do the interfaces. We could really have something. How hard is it to order 100 2x4s from Home Depot and have them deliver it to your house. Why is it so difficult to order 100 Ford Fiesta’s to our dealership? If the messages back and forth were XML, encrypted by SSL over the Internet.
What is first, the internet was already created and SSL is almost a system standard. What is left is XML. Who would like to help create the standards for DMS XML? Well, we have a problem with that statement, DMS is already taken by Document Management Systems. How about Dealer XML? What about the Manufactures? I came to AMS XML for Automotive Management System XML. Who is with me? If you are… http://code.google.com/p/firedms/