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An Agent’s Guide to Using Video Review

By: Steve Veldkamp

An Agent’s Guide to Using Video Review

So as an agent, you are thinking of putting cameras into your stores. This may be because you have been to a recent conference and heard other agents extolling the virtues of such a program. Or your dealer just came back from a 20 group where someone said, “If you want to add $200 to you PVR, just put a camera in the F&I office!” Or maybe it’s just a decision to increase the level of service provided to your dealer clients.

I began using video in 2006. In those six years, I’ve come to believe that the camera is the most powerful training tool available to agents. However like any tool, if not used properly it will not perform or worse, may even cause more harm than good.

Here are six key steps to successfully using the camera.

1. Every Transaction Must Be Recorded. Period.

This sounds elementary, but surprisingly this may be the most difficult step. You will hear every reason imaginable for not recording. “It stopped working,” “It was a cash deal,” “They’re a previous customer who never buys anything,” “It’s a sub-prime deal”…

If you do not get the commitment or have the resolve to record every transaction, my recommendation is, do not put the cameras in at all! Why? Your time will be spent determining if the transaction should have been recorded and listening to all the reasons why a particular transaction was not captured. More importantly, your client may be put into possible class-action discrimination troubles. Anytime a dealership has one process for one set of customers, and different processes for a second set, the dealership may have lawyers examining the reasons why.

So how does an agent ensure that every transaction is recorded? By getting the dealer’s support. Plain and simple, if the dealer does not require that every transaction be captured; video review should not be an option. The dealer can support the process by providing an incentive for 100 percent of all transactions recorded. The dealer can also support the process by not paying commission on deals where the camera was not used. Either way, dealer support is needed to make sure every transaction is captured.

2. Watch the videos.

This was my biggest failure early on. I struggled getting the production out of one of our dealer groups. I recommended to the dealer that we put cameras in, at his expense. I told him that the results nationally were $200 per car, and that it would be a great investment! We put the cameras in and, after the first month, production really did not change. The only thing that did change was the dealer spent a bunch of money on hardware and software fees, upsetting many of his people in the process. Soon after, I lost the account.

One big reason the numbers usually go up after installing the camera is that the producers realize they now must follow the 300 percent rule (100 percent of the products to 100 percent of the people 100 percent of the time). When they realize someone is watching, they are more likely to present every product every time.

Watch at least four transactions per Financial Services Manager per month. If this is too much for you to do personally, hire a professional reviewing service from your provider, or hire someone at your agency to review the videos. Make sure the individual has rudimentary knowledge of the Financial Services process, this will make sure there is no disconnect on behalf of the reviewer.

3. Grade them.

Develop a grading system to use when reviewing each transaction. Be sure to include everything that you want to see accomplished during the transaction. I have attached a sample review sheet. I look for 12 accomplishments, broken into two categories, sales and compliance.

Download the F&I Review Sheet Download a PDF F&I Review Sheet Here »

The grading system should follow after the training system. For example, we train the producer to establish the need for each product and then show how the product solves the need. Notice how the grading system follows what we think makes for the best presentations.

After scoring the video, we compile all the scores, keeping them in a database for tracking.

4. Give feedback.

After completing the review sheet, give it back to the producer along with any words of praise and/or recommendations to improve. We have found it to be most effective to have the producer and dealer to sign-off on the feedback sheet.

Another very effective way to give feedback is to watch a producer’s transaction together. This way the producer themselves can see the areas they are the strongest in and should continue to do, and the areas they need improvement.

5. Hold review meetings.

This is most effective with clients that have more than one producer. At least one time per month, bring all the producers of the organization together to review transactions from the previous month. These should always be “highlights!” You want to praise the producers in public, train and correct in private.

In these meetings share with the other producers what is working, right within their own organization. These meeting should be no more than an hour, reviewing specific pertinent time frames of five to six transactions.

6. Use the videos.

Use the videos. Use them in training. Use them to share new closes. Use them to share compliance initiatives.

Videos can be a powerful tool in increasing PRU and making you a more viable asset in the dealerships you serve.

This article was written by:

- has written 1 posts on Agent Entrepreneur.

Steve is the Training Director for the Great Lakes Companies, a diversified Michigan based provider of dealership services. Steve has served on the Advisory Board for both the first annual Agent Summit and the 2011 Industry Summit.

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