Swedish BMW specialist digitises customer and workshop management
It is not without reason that Bil- & Elservice Ludvika AB call themselves BMW specialists. From its formation in 1963 until recently, the company has been an authorised BMW workshop in the Swedish city of Ludvika, located 220 km north-west from Stockholm. Customer and workshop management has been run in the traditional analogue way until the turn of the year 2021/2022, when the transition to a digital solution with TriSys was initiated. Read more about the company's experiences in this article.
Although Bil- & Elservice Ludvika AB as BMW specialists have been digitized in many areas, a large part of the company's workflows in relation to workshop and customer management until the beginning of 2021 have been carried out in the traditional way. Many pens and a lot of paper have been used in connection with updating the customer archive, work cards, filling out service forms, invoicing, etc.
TriSys has not had to replace an existing system but is the company's first digital workshop and customer management system. It is therefore only a limited part of the TriSys system that has been put into use for a start - and along the way the two holders want to take advantage of other of TriSys's possibilities - in this regard later.
Customer and vehicle creation is done easily by lookups on the telephone number and the vehicle registration number
Today, customer and vehicle management, creation of quotes and job cards, ordering of goods and invoicing are handled in Trisys. But also the management of employees' working hours, which is required by law and therefore must be documented and be able to be presented at inspections by the authorities, is handled today in TriSys. Since TriSys is a cloud-based system, there are no great demands on the hardware used, which can be both a PC, tablet or smartphone, but just an internet connection and an updated internet browser. At Bil- & Elservice Ludvika AB, the operation of TriSys goes partly via PC in the customer reception as well as the office and via two tablets in the workshop. Another important detail is the backup of system data, which in TriSys is made completely automatically.
One of the two tablets used by the mechanics in the workshop
"We have already achieved great savings in relation to the time we spend on customer creation", says Roger and continues: "The majority of the master data we create on the customer is obtained by a lookup on the customer's phone number. It is only information such as e-mail address, payment terms and a few other information that we enter ourselves. We also get information about the customer's vehicle automatically by simply entering the registration number and then linking the vehicle to the customer".
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In this way, Kenneth Bååth, working in the customer reception, has been able to quickly create all active customers from the old customer directory and customers' vehicles. At the same time, creating new customers has become much easier. The same applies to quotation, creation of work cards and ordering of spare parts. But also, in relation to the current GDPR legislation, Bil- & Elservice Ludvika AB has gained an advantage by using TriSys, where you can easily account for which data has been registered and delete it if a customer wants it.
Quotes are prepared in no time while the customer waits
"When a new potential customer comes by - or calls to get a quote - we can now prepare an offer much faster than before. After entering the customer's phone number and the registration number of the car, we are ready to make the offer. Now we simply choose what type of service the customer wants – for example, 100,000 km of service and any additional services – then the system creates the offer with an indication of the time spent, which parts are included in the execution of the task. We can even see the specification and quantity of the oil(s), brake fluid, etc. to be used and select them from our own warehouse in the case of, for example, engine oil, which we have on the shelf. The prices of the spare parts are also automatically added to the offer when we have clicked on the catalogue from the supplier from which we want to get the parts".
A serviced customer car ready for pickup
In the case of Bil- & Elservice Ludvika AB, it is possible to choose between Triscan's and Bilxtra's catalogue. In addition, the company's internal stock of BMW spare parts, oils and other consumables is put into TriSys's inventory management. It is also possible to use barcode scanners in TriSys - and one such has been purchased and is expected to be implemented soon, so that the input work is further reduced.
If the offer is accepted, it is converted with a click into a job card - and ordering the necessary parts is also done with a click. Now all that remains is to make an appointment with the customer.
"We are excited about the digital service scheme in TriSys, which gives both the customer and ourselves the assurance that all points have been done. It looks professional and the ability to register service and repairs in the Digital Service Book, which follows the car by changing owners, is also a great opportunity we have with TriSys."
As mentioned earlier, far from all the system's possibilities have been exploited at Bil- & Elservice Ludvika AB. The scheduling calendar, which provides a unique overview of the workshop occupancy, ongoing and planned tasks, spare parts ordering, billing status and much more, is not yet reversed.
An example of a Swedish workshop that also uses the calendar function
The same is true of the possibility of integration into an economic system. By choosing an accountant with knowledge of one of the many ERP systems that TriSys can be integrated into, far greater savings on accountant bills are achieved than the cost of the chosen cloud-based financial system. In this context, it is important to mention that integration does not require any kind of knowledge of the chosen financial system – because the registration of income/expenses, accounting, input/output VAT, etc. all takes place automatically in the background. The auditor's work assignment is thus reduced to only occasionally logging on to the financial system, carrying out random checks and final reconciliation of monthly/annual accounts, VAT accounting and tax accounting.
The rental module has also not been put into use yet but is an obvious option for all workshops with rental cars, trailers, roof boxes and the like. Rental contracts with all the necessary customer information are completed in just a few clicks, double bookings can be avoided, and you can easily get an overview of the rental business.
"TriSys has already proven to be an administrative gain. We're just getting started, but we're going to expand our use to more of the many options that we haven't put into use now".
To the right Roger Karlson, Bil- & Elservice Ludvika AB and left Andreas Lundgren, HDBsystem AB
ABOUT BIL - & ELSERVICE LUDVIKA AB
Torsten Norman and Leif Eriksson established the company in 1963. In 1976 the company moved to its current address and in 1987 Mikael Wiklund took over the company, which in 2008 was taken over by the current owners, Roger Karlson and Anders Fältman. Roger Karlson, who is himself a trained mechanic, has been with the company since 1991 and Anders Fältman, who is also a mechanic, joined in 2000. The workshop has four lifts and a total of five employees – four mechanics and one employee in the customer reception/enrolment.
Since 2021, the workshop is no longer an authorized BMW workshop, but a so-called fort level freestanding BMW workshop. The requirements for investment in equipment for servicing and repairing EV vehicles, as well as the necessary training, were not profitable compared to the fact that only three BMW EV models are currently registered in Ludvika. As a fort level workshop, Bil- & Elservice Ludvika AB still has access to original parts via authorised BMW workshops. The same applies to online access to BMW's workshop systems - including diagnostics and tools. The workshop, on the other hand, can no longer carry out warranty repairs and handle work in connection with callback campaigns – which the workshop really sees as an advantage.