mstore’s new Workshop Control module designed to keep technicians working productively at their ramps and improve overall aftersales efficiency and throughput will be launched at AM Live this month. This is the latest release from the mstore for automotive platform which uniquely provides dealership-wide digitisation of operations for improved margin, compliance, customer service, flexible working and productivity. Integration with dealer management systems, showroom software, workshop testing devices and other existing systems optimises efficiencies and provides a true end-to-end streamlined user experience.

Paperless working was first introduced to a Mercedez franchise dealfile workflow in 2008 by Arena Group’s mstore team and has since been developed in close collaboration with dealership groups and manufacturers to enable dealership-wide digital working with the system live in over 670 dealerships and over 4.6 million sales deal files and aftersales WIP packs managed. Vertu Motors has attributed the efficiencies gained through mstore as a key contributor to their impressive 2020 performance with 1400% ROI calculated after the second year of the system’s rollout. Read case study here.

This latest delivery from the mstore roadmap is a collaboration between the Soper BMW team, Arena mstore specialists and the BMW transformation department with BMW Innovation Funding support. 

“For the technicians it’s definitely a time saver. They absolutely love it. The amount of time that we can recoup by using the system through productivity and the amount of money that we can regenerate - it’s invaluable to the business.”

Jason Child
Soper BMW 

Improvements have been introduced right across the aftersales function with provision of job information on a digital kanban screen replacing the paper-based t-card system  providing a hub for a range of workflows. In contrast to common practice in service, technicians pin requests for parts to jobs which is picked up in the parts queue on the digital job board, and brought to workshop ready and waiting. The Parts team can deal with an instant request and deliver alerts to the technician which has eliminated idle time at the workshop parts counter.

Dedicated service advisers and contact centre staff can keep customer informed with instant access to current job status and notes with one picture of the truth provided for all relevant staff in real-time through the mstore platform on screen. Customers enjoy instant, accurate updates and digital signing to confirm work.

Digital working is embraced by teams as the job rack and everyday workflows are replaced with a familiar digital representation of this which is easy to adopt and delivers welcome efficiencies, freeing up time for more value, satisfying tasks. It’s much easier to see the big picture, manage operations and stay in control with an easy drag and drop interface, and option to drill into the detail. Colour coding provides instant clarity on progress against deadlines including completion of compliance-related checks and accounting tasks to retain audit and invoice readiness in the warranty process, feeding information to the next stage, and not waiting on or losing paperwork.

Inspired by the Kanban approach to workflow management designed by Toyota’s father of the production system Taiichi Ohno to improve efficiency, the mstore team also took the time to observe operations on the ground, with people performing tasks that did not lead directly to chargeable hours or better customer service.

“We observed a continuous stream of people coming to the Workshop Controller for information about what’s going on,” explains Neil Maude, Director of Digital Services at Xerox. “The Service Adviser would need to query where the car was, a technician would stop by to confirm a finished job, provide an update or check if there is more work. This is all dead time.”

The whole Soper team helped provide insights that delivered other unforeseen benefits: “How we go about things to have technicians involved in what we’re doing is a morale booster too,” explains Jason.

​“The mstore system has changed our world; it’s helped to move mountains and made our lives so much easier. This whole project has been an evolution in how we work at Soper. There’s a lot more collaboration, teamwork and joined up thinking. We’re no longer separate parts and workshop departments, we’re an aftersales team.” 

Andrew Tullie, MD
Soper BMW

“When you see mstore’s digital workshop job board, you see the volume of WiPs that we’re handling and it’s staggering. You just wonder how you ever did it before,” comments Andrew Tullie.

Find out more about the mstore for automotive platform here.