20 BMW Dealers Get BI Solution in Just a Few Weeks With TimeXtender
Why do Belgium BMW dealerships seem to remain almost unaffected in times of economic downturn? The success story of the car dealers can of course be attributed to the quality of its products, but there is more to it than that. The BMW dealerships show a level of excellence in execution and management, rarely seen in the automobile industry.
A DMS (or Dealer Management System) is an indispensable tool for the support of the dealer’s daily operational processes. This is why all BMW dealers have standardized on a DMS implemented by the software company Carya Group. One of the major BMW dealers is Jorssen, belonging to the AMB Holding in Belgium.
Yvan Jansen, CFO at AMB Holding: “Within the group, we sell about 6000 cars a year. We need to keep a close eye on the performance of our sales teams and our workshop activities with real-time, up-to-date management information.”
Complex pivot tables in Excel
While the BMW DMS allowed to manage administrative, commercial and service-related activities, it did not offer sufficient Management reporting and analysis capabilities.
Yvan Jansen: “We used to spend hours and hours making reports in Excel. Employees struggled with the interpretation of complex pivot tables. Apart from being very time-consuming, this also presented a potential risk of errors in the DMS.”
AMB Holding and other major BMW dealers decided to invest in a Management Information System for its garages. The solution had to be powerful, tailored to the BMW business and easy to integrate with the DMS and also for the other automotive business within AMB Holding.
The complex implementation process of a typical Business Intelligence solution, often 6 to 12 months, would be out scope for the BMW dealers. The new solution had to be implemented fast and with a minimum of effort to the dealers.
After evaluating classic development tools based on Microsoft; it soon became clear that building a Data Warehouse would be hard and maintaining it over time so difficult that it would not be affordable for the dealer.
Implementation in record time with TimeXtender
Scanning the market led to Automotive Business Intelligence specialist CALM-Co & TimeXtender as a viable alternative. The first phase was to do a proof of concept. BMW dealers soon realized that the solution proposed by CALM – Co based on TimeXtender would allow them to implement a solution in a very short time.
TimeXtender is what I call ‘a magic tool’. We could develop a solution in about one fifth of the time of what we needed with the classical tools”. – Luc Cos, Managing Partner, CALM – Co
Every night, data from the DMS of AMB group and also 19 other BMW dealers is sent to a centralized server. Then TimeXtender automatically generates the entire ETL process (Extract, Transform and Load) to produce usable information. The final result is a centralized and fully automated Data Warehouse that contains all the necessary facts, figures and calculations, needed to feed the reports.
The second phase was to implement the solution for three BMW dealerships. Based on the results achieved by CALM – Co, 15 other “early adopters” from the BMW network signed up for the system within three months. The initial success motivated BMW dealerships to start the implementation – a process that was finalized in less than 15 months. BMW-Jorssen was one of them.
Dirk Remacle, International Sales Manager at TimeXtender: “TimeXtender is all about accelerating the implementation and the maintenance of a BI system. At each of the BMW dealerships, we are talking about a highly complex BI project across multiple sites (garages) rolled out in a few weeks rather than months.”
Follow up on car sales
Today, TimeXtender enables business users at BMW dealerships to generate the numbers and feed the reporting system, without having to spend hours on calculations or needing to rely on the IT department. Result: a higher throughput and a much faster return on investment.
Yvan Jansen says: “Today, we manage to publish all the information needed almost in real-time on the manager’s screens, allowing them to investigate potential issues with just a few mouse-clicks”.
Workshop & spare parts performance
The largest of the Jorssen BMW dealerships is located in Aartselaar, and operates a workshop with 18 technicians. On average the team works on 70 cars every day. Workshop performance is one of the top priorities of the management.
Yvan Jansen: “All the data is captured in the DMS system, TimeXtender transforms it into valuable Management information. With a few mouse-clicks, we get statistics about the hours registered per employee, per make or model, per activity and we can perform benchmarking analyses. This enables us to take immediate action if and when necessary.”
Cash planning: from two man-days to less than two hours
In the past, completing the cash planning for the whole AMB group – 19 companies – took a whole working day for two employees to complete. Today, TimeXtender feeds the BI front-end (Targit) to provide a complete overview of the liquidity position of the group in less than two hours’ time.
“Not only are we saving a lot of time on reporting – about tenfold; the accuracy of the financial data has also improved significantly”, concludes Yvan Jansen.
And there’s more: Watch the video interview on “Why BMW dealers and CALM – Co chose TimeXtender”