Dealerships, garages, and other automotive businesses have a lot going on. It can be hard to keep track of everything, from inventory management to security, from customer service to cleanliness. Before expanding headcount, which could hurt your margins, consider technological solutions. Automotive live video surveillance can help you keep track of everything happening in your business.
Live video surveillance is a way to monitor your locations remotely in real time. Remote monitoring uses a combination of security cameras and advanced video analytics to keep an eye on your automotive business. There are many benefits to using this technology, including enhanced security, lower costs, improved efficiency, and a reduced risk of fraudulent damage claims.
Indeed, while car dealerships and repair shops install automotive live video surveillance to enhance security, the benefits go far beyond just a more secure business.
12 live video surveillance benefits
As mentioned above, being able to monitor your business in real time has both security and non-security benefits. Here are 12 benefits of live video surveillance:
- Respond to issues in real time
- Remote monitoring
- Better asset protection/loss prevention
- Track business trends with custom reports and analysis
- Remote guarding
- Reduced labor expenses and hiring needs
- Better security
- Alarm verification
- Better customer service
- Prevent fraudulent damage claims
- Cleaner businesses
- Safer parking lots
Note that these benefits often open up great synergies. For example, tracking your business trends and identifying retraining needs can improve customer service at your dealership, garage, tire center, or car wash as well.
Respond to issues in real time
If you offer set price maintenance services such as oil or tire changes, then your profitability will be directly affected by speed of service. You can do six oil changes per hour if they take 10 minutes but only two if they take 30 minutes.
Threshold Notifications allows businesses to set limits on the metrics important to them, including speed of service. Then you can get a proactive notification any time your core metrics are outside of your comfort zone. This allows you to take action faster to rectify speed of service before they spiral out of control.
Automotive live video surveillance can also help you respond in real time to issues outside of business hours.
Solink Video Alarms can identify criminal activity sooner than traditional alarm systems. In a recent comparison with standard panel alarms, Solink Video Alarms detected suspicious activity, requested police response, and the police placed the suspect in custody before the standard panel alarms had been triggered.
In addition, when law enforcement is requested, the police can be given real-time access to your security camera feeds. That way they know exactly what is happening and how they should respond.
Remote video monitoring gives you the ability to audit your dealerships and repair shops for company policy compliance from anywhere. Review sales engagement, monitor for cleanliness, and track speed of service at all of your locations on your laptop or mobile device.
Better asset protection/loss prevention
Money, tools, parts, and vehicles are all at risk of theft. Automotive live video surveillance allows you to review your business when theft occurs to see what happened, making it more likely the situation will be resolved adequately.
It also helps reduce the risk of theft going forward by creating a strong deterrent to stealing. Security cameras that are monitored in real time dissuade thieves from trying to steal cars from your lots. For internal theft, automotive live video surveillance can help you reduce inventory shrinkage and improve your loss prevention onboarding.
The biggest Cookies retailer uses Solink to perform loss prevention onboarding. Here’s how Ryan Dzwigalski, the Director of Loss Prevention for the largest Cookies operator, explains it:
“During onboarding, I'll show off the Solink platform. New employees find it really cool, but it also helps create the impression that we are in control. It shows new employees that we are watching, and that we have the ability to find anything. I’ll show them videos from stores that are months old in crisp HD and follow a person through the store and zoom in on what they are doing. They think I'm just showing off our great security system, but in the back of their head, they now know I’m watching."
Track business trends with custom reports and analysis
The Solink Dashboard helps you keep track of all of your important data. Solink connects to various data sources including your point of sale (POS) and then pairs the information with relevant video clips. That way you can see what is happening across your business. Solink also sends you Daily Digest emails that summarize your business outcomes so you always know your core metrics.
You can fully customize your Solink Dashboard to keep track of the metrics that are important to you. Whether it is the average size of a sale, the speed of service, or daily sales volume, all of your locations can be tracked on one screen. You can also compare your stats to the previous day, week, or month.
Remote guarding is the use of live video surveillance equipment to replace on-site security guards or enhance their ability to patrol large properties. In either case, using your security system to replace live guards can save a lot of money.
In addition, surveillance cameras never sleep, cannot be intimidated, provide objective evidence when an incident occurs, and can monitor your entire business at once. All of these added benefits are why automotive businesses use remote guarding to protect their stores.
One of the added benefits of remote guarding for car dealerships is that they can be used indoors and outdoors. That way your sales lot can also be protected.
Reduced labor expenses and hiring needs
Live video surveillance can reduce labor expenses in several ways. Most directly, the remote guarding function can replace live 24/7 on-site security guards. However, even when a full-time salary isn’t being removed from the books, video surveillance systems can be used to improve productivity.
By auditing your car repair shops remotely, you can reduce time theft and increase productivity. Getting even 10% more work out of every mechanic can save you tens of thousands of dollars by the end of the year.
Solink is a complete video management system (VMS). With all of the included tools, you can now search for theft or other security incidents, save the videos, organize all the evidence gathered for an event, and share it internally and with law enforcement in one platform.
Car dealerships need to protect their biggest assets from theft and vandalism while keeping them out in the open. Live video surveillance can help do this without building walls around the cars.
Solink Video Alarms Monitoring Service is another way to better protect your business with live video surveillance. Unlike traditional panel alarms, video alarms can monitor entire areas of your business for improved detection. You can also turn them on and off one zone at a time, meaning your showroom can be open for business while the repair shop is secured.
In a recent independent comparison of Solink Video Alarms and traditional panel alarms, video alarms led to multiple arrests while traditional alarms led to zero apprehensions.
Alarm verification gives trained professionals the ability to review in real time what is happening on a site before deciding whether an emergency response is warranted. Then, when law enforcement is required, the video feed is shared with the dispatcher to ensure prompt and appropriate response.
However, the value of alarm verification goes beyond better security. Verified alarms also save you money. Many police forces no longer respond to unverified alarms, and where they do false alarm fines are increasing.
In the same head-to-head comparison mentioned above, Solink Video Alarms led to a 100% decrease in false alarm fines across multiple restaurant locations.
This can even lead to better relationships with law enforcement. When the police are confident you can provide the necessary evidence to build a case, they will be more inclined to deeply investigate every incident.
The largest Cookies retailer uses Solink to build their relationship with law enforcement. Here’s what their Director of Loss Prevention, Ryan Dzwigalski, has to say:
“I’ve been in loss prevention for 20 years. I wish I had something like Solink before because being able to share video with the police so easily is huge. It was always such a hassle before. You’d have to find a USB stick, get their address, put it in a bubbled envelope, and drop it off at the police dropbox. Then, the police might not be able to open the file. If you get a reputation of not providing the needed evidence, police can become less responsive to non-emergency calls like theft. Now, Solink has helped me create a good relationship with law enforcement. It is such a huge benefit.”
Better customer service
Customers are looking for honest, expert advice when entering a dealership or repair shop. There’s a lot of anxiety built into purchasing and owning a vehicle because most people don’t know how they work.
The right sales tactics build relationships with customers who will not only feel confident purchasing from your business but stay loyal for future car needs. An automotive dealership live video surveillance system can help monitor how your staff is dealing with customers. Where allowed, pairing video with audio equipment can even allow you to listen into different conversations to better hone your sales staff’s approach.
For routine maintenance such as putting on winter tires or oil changes, the speed of service is not just important for the profitability of your garage. Customers also want to be done with these errands quickly. Using your live video surveillance to monitor your speed of service in real time means you can react sooner to issues before they pile up.
This improves the profitability of your repair shop while also giving better customer service that will lead to repeat business.
Prevent fraudulent damage claims
Garages are often blamed for dents and scratches. Some customers try to maliciously pass this off on mechanics. However, it is usually the case that the customer is mistaken. They spend extra time inspecting their vehicle after having their winter tires put on or getting an oil change and notice damage for the first time.
These fraudulent claims can be combated with the help of car repair shop live video surveillance. In these cases, being able to look up the video footage paired to the customer gives your business the evidence you need to show the customer that the damage was not done on premises.
When there is a lull in business, many employees will instinctively consider this a time to take a break. However, it’s also an opportunity to clean the property so it is more presentable to customers.
Keeping your buildings and parking lots clean makes your business more inviting to customers. It also reduces the risk of injury to someone entering your business or damage to their car by removing trip hazards, spills, and so on.
Spinx uses Solink to monitor all of their locations for cleanliness and company compliance.
Safer parking lots
Cars are expensive assets, for both businesses and individuals, and a simple scratch can be thousands of dollars to repair. This represents a big expense for an automotive company, whether it’s their car or that of a customer that is damaged.
There are a lot of liability issues associated with parking lots, especially when they are your vehicles:
- Fender benders
- Hit and runs
- Smash-and-grab thefts
- Stolen cars
- Safety issues due to wet or snowy conditions
Without real-time monitoring, issues go unresolved. When a crime does occur, it’s important to be able to properly follow up so it doesn’t happen again. The Solink platform allows you to document every event to make sure it is resolved correctly and quickly.
Solink is the best automotive live video surveillance system
Solink provides a customizable cloud-first video analytics platform. Most automotive businesses install security cameras to protect their people, patrons, and property. However, the benefits go way beyond security.
Productivity and training, potential liability claims, cleanliness, and customer service can all be monitored with automotive live video surveillance. This can improve profitability through both increased revenue and decreased expenses.
To see how Solink can help you monitor all of your dealerships and repair shops, sign up for a demo today.
Timothy Ware is Solink’s Content Manager. He brings over ten years of writing and editing experience to the job. When he isn’t writing about security, loss prevention, and asset protection, he’s enjoying his newest board game. His work has appeared on many B2B SaaS websites including Baremetrics, Security Today, TeamPassword, Cova, and SignTime.