When you visit an automobile dealership you may be there to visit any one of the departments that exist inside the main business, each a unique business-within-a-business. Most dealerships operate several departments including:
- New Car Sales
- Used Car Sales
- Body Shop
- Risk Management
Dealerships are complex businesses that have existed for over a century, and they succeed when all the parts work together. Much like an automobile! The auto dealer industry is currently in a state of flux, and some might say turmoil for several reasons. Internet auto sales companies independent of dealers, human resource issues, and government regulations are major challenges.
Here are some key issues dealerships are dealing with today:
Many dealerships are family-owned, and while that may seem to be an advantage, families don’t always get along. There are special ways to plan for and deal with disruptions in operations. Succession planning is an integral part of the overall strategy for any business, particularly one that is as complex as an auto dealership. If an auto dealership owner is planning to sell to an outside buyer, there are strategies to deal with different types of transitioning the business in ways that benefit the seller. Some sellers opt to retain some control or a small percentage of ownership, and some stay on in a consultative capacity.
In many family owned and operated dealerships you’ll find the founder in the main office, and his brother is the sales manager. A cousin might be running the parts department, and sister-in-law putting her accounting degree to good use in the finance department. Key personnel seem to be working at the dealership forever, but others seem to come and go. Cox Automotive’s 2017 Dealership Staffing Study says the turnover rate for 20- and 30-something Generation Y’ers is 52%. This means on average every other Millennial who hires on at a dealership ends up leaving. Total dealership turnover in general is 40%, but is 67% in sales, where working on commission scares away both jobholders and job-seekers.
Keeping employees is good for business, and to do so requires a solid plan, something best instituted with the help of an expert. It may require the sweetening of a benefits to performance strategy, but in the end it’s worth it.
Non-Dealer Internet Sales
You can’t buy a car on Amazon.com, at least not yet. But last year the Seattle company launched Amazon Vehicles, what it’s calling an online “automotive community.” There, customers can research cars, shop for car parts and accessories and read and write reviews of cars. The car research destination gives visitors access to auto specifications, images, videos and customer reviews for new and older models. There are other online sources for buying and delivering cars in 24 hours. Many states have laws that protect dealerships, but this is going to likely be a battleground in years to come.
These are but three areas for automobile dealerships to deal with, and the assistance of a qualified, experienced consultant is a prudent thing to consider. And when things get really complicated and involve litigation, the help of an automotive industry expert witness can be invaluable.
Kirk Kleckner – Auto Dealership Consultant Expert Witness
Mr. Kleckner has over 30 years working for dealerships and working with them as a consultant and expert witness.
He is a CPA, MBA and has professional accreditation including:
• Accredited Senior Appraiser in Business Valuation (ASA) from the American Society of Appraisers
• Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV) from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA)
• Certified in Financial Forensics, from the AICPA (CFF)
Kirk’s services include:
Business Damages – Business Valuation – Settlement Warranty Extension – Valuation Ownership – Succession Planning – Dealership Practices – Class Action Settlement Valuation – Business Interruption – Minority Interests – Fair Value – Ownership Disputes – Lost Profits – Management Succession Planning – Owner Wealth Transfer – Owner Tax Optimization – Valuation Discounts – Premiums Partnership Dissolution
Auto Dealership Consultant Expert Witness – Contact Page
Therefore, all good things happen for a reason. In conclusion, it’s best to hire an expert. Auto Dealership Consultant Expert Witness
Hence, remember the phone number is (612) 294-8730