How BI and Analytics Tools Promote Cross-Dealer Collaboration
Originally published July 9, 2021. Updated July 11, 2023
As consumer demand increases and technology evolves, dealerships across the globe are looking to adopt a data-driven approach to performance management.
However, an effective data strategy requires top-tier business intelligence (BI) strategies and user adoption across departments and dealership locations. And these BI and analytics tools play an integral role in breaking down internal silos and enabling teams to innovate faster than ever before.
This post will highlight three ways the right BI and analytics tool promotes collaboration and improves visibility across dealership teams.
Seamless System Integrations
As your business grows, you may adopt an ad-hoc approach to your tech stack: switching between applications or adding new ones to your system on a regular basis. Unfortunately, while your intentions may be to innovate and keep up with the latest technologies, this high level of churn often creates more problems than it solves.
If you’re pulling reports and critical data from multiple tools that don’t connect, there’s a high probability that some departments are operating blindly or referencing outdated data sources. As time goes on, you’ll likely face technology overload, especially if you keep adding new tools to your systems without properly sunsetting legacy ones.
Rather than managing a laundry list of disparate systems or overhauling your workflows repeatedly, you should aim to implement an integrated BI and analytics tool with APIs that enable full integration with the rest of your tech stack. In addition, these tools make it easy to streamline your operations and allow real-time data sharing in a secure, cloud-based environment.
Your key team members at each dealership location will no longer spend hours checking various systems or chasing down data sources without a breadcrumb trail. Plus, platform agility will enable your organization to keep up with innovations and evolving consumer demands without investing your total IT budget into a full-scale transformation project down the line.
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A Single Source of Truth
Disparate systems aren’t just difficult to manage and scale; they also make cross-dealer visibility and alignment nearly impossible. No matter how reliable your analysts and controllers may be, organizations without an aggregated data dashboard run the risk of data errors, miscommunication, and misalignment between teams. Plus, dealerships without a single source of truth (SSOT) often make decisions based on incomplete, incorrect, or outdated information.
Your BI platform shouldn’t simply collect and monitor your ERP or DMS data. It should also include a unified, easy-to-use dashboard or aggregation features to unify every piece of data in your organization, such as payroll, weather, website, and social media data in one view. Integrations are also critical here, as they enable your BI and analytics tool to collect, track, and report on data from other sources in your IT arsenal.
Increased Visibility and Adoption
Once your dealerships can house all of their data under one roof, it’s even easier to share reports, status updates, and other essential information with your dealership headquarters and all other locations. So while your platform should include visualization and sharing tools for emails or other correspondence, it should also enable user-friendly system access.
Your BI and analytics tool shouldn’t be so complex that only your IT teams can access and explore it. Instead, it should boast impressive backend functionality, with a user interface that’s intuitive and easy to use, no matter which employees need to use it. As you prioritize usability and accessibility, you’ll increase user adoption across teams. And as more teams leverage the power of BI data, you’ll begin to see better alignment and data-driven decision-making.
As the role of data and analytics evolves from a one-off reporting feature to an essential collaboration tool, dealerships are looking to adopt data-driven business strategies to improve decision-making, manage risk, and grow profits.