Tag Archive | "F&I Administration Solutions"

APT’s Pazik to Helm Agent Summit Tech Panel


LAS VEGAS — Organizers of Agent Summit have announced that Randy Pazik, president of Accelerated Profit Technologies, will lead a panel dedicated to new technology at the event, which will be held May 9–11, 2016, at the Venetian Palazzo Las Vegas.

“The flood of new technology into the dealer and agent segments can at times be overwhelming, but it can’t be ignored,” said David Gesualdo, show chair and publisher of Agent Entrepreneur andF&I and Showroom. “We are counting on Randy and his team to help us sort through the wealth of new developments and focus on the ones that drive F&I product sales.”

The panel, “Technology on the Move — New Horizons” will begin at 4:45 p.m. on Monday, May 9. Pazik will be joined by Thomas Elliott, executive vice president of StoneEagle; Kumar Kathinokkula, COO of F&I Administration Solutions; Tony Luciano, vice president of information technology for Allstate Dealer Services; Jim Maxim Jr., president and CEO of MaximTrak; and Carrie Profaizer, vice president of information technology and division CIO for Protective Asset Protection.

Pazik pledged to challenge his panelists to reveal not only what they are working on and have brought to market but how their solutions are performing in the real world.

“What the agents in attendance get out of this session depends on the questions we ask,” Pazik said. “How do agents, dealers and customers — particularly Millennial customers — interact and respond to new technology? I want to know what these providers are doing to make sure their products are relevant to the market.”

Registration for Agent Summit is now open at the event’s website as well as by phone, fax and email. Attendees who register by April 4 will enjoy a $100 discount. To inquire about sponsorship and exhibition opportunities, contact Eric Gesualdo via email hidden; JavaScript is required or call 727-612-8826.

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50th F&I Product Administrator Signs On With F&I Admin


CHICAGO – F&I Administration Solutions, LLC (F&I Admin), North America’s leading provider of software solutions for the administration of F&I products, announced today that it has added it’s 50th product administrator to the company’s steadily growing customer base. This milestone marks a significant achievement for F&I Admin and confirms its leadership position in the automotive and powersports F&I industry.

Since purchasing the company in 2009, F&I Admin has achieved exponential year on year growth – building its customer base from 7 to 50, integrating to over 60 menu and other partners and enhancing its SCS Auto software to continually expand its solutions and services without compromising on flexibility and ease of use. Over 5 million new transactions were processed through the SCS Auto system in 2015.

“F&I Admin differentiates itself from competitors by consistently evolving and updating its software and services,” said Kumar Kathinokkula, COO of F&I Admin. “This constant growth of the breadth and depth of our functionality ensures that we are always appealing to an ever growing list of potential customers. This is one of the major drivers of the rapid pace at which customers are signing up with us.”

“We are very proud of this moment in F&I Admin’s history,” added David Trinder, CEO of F&I Admin. “Companies who select F&I Admin are looking for a partner that is dedicated to the complete customer experience but is still agile enough to adjust to this ever-changing industry. Our continued growth is a direct result of F&I Admin’s ability to deliver to this expectation.”

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Wise F&I Launches ONWise – A New Web-based Resource


St. Louis, MO – Wise F&I LLC is a leading F&I product provider to automotive dealers. Wise F&I recently deployed ONWise – Wise F&I’s online resource for its agent and automotive dealer partners. ONWise includes an industry-leading Contract Administration Portal that provides an intuitive, online administration solution for automotive dealers supporting such services as contract origination, remittance, reporting and cancellation processing. With technology powered by F&I Administration Solutions, LLC, ONWise supports electronic integration with most major DMS and menu selling system platforms. Wise F&I is connecting dealers, agents and lender partners to the information they need, building stronger relationships through increased efficiencies and improved customer satisfaction. “Our goal is to be the F&I partner of choice and expanding our online capabilities is going to help further those partnerships and grow business,” said Matt Croak, President, Wise F&I. “With an expansive suite of products inclusing: GAPWise, WiseCARE, THEFTWise, WiseTVP and IDTheftWise, and we are looking forward to how ONWise will further enhance the high level of customer service that we offer”.

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Agent Summit 2014 Recap: Technology Showcase Panel


While most dealers have switched over to eRating, many have not switched over to eContracting all of their paperwork. Johnny Garlich, President, Heart Dealer Financial Services and moderator for the Technology Showcase panel led a discussion that addressed the latest offerings in technology, as well as the roadblocks and predictions for the future in the F&I office. The panel of experts each presented solutions and shared their predictions about what the F&I office of the future will look like.

Brian Reed, president and CEO, F&I Express opened the discussion stating, “Without any doubt in my mind, the industry is going toward electronic processing of all aftermarket product. It’s not ‘if’ it’s going to happen, it’s happening right now and I think everyone really needs to get on board with figuring out exactly what it means and how to make it easiest for the dealer. The key to success is to make it as fast and easy as possible for the dealer. The nature of an F&I manager is to get it done quickly and if there are roadblocks slowing them down, they are not going to like it. The big, big change, and where the market is going to bring this whole process together, is eSignature. Once you have eSignature, it really streamlines things and makes it that much faster for the F&I managers. Consumers expect that today.”

Nowicki, vice president of retail software, IAS, whose company provides single point eRating and eContracting through a menu says most of their users are on their menu. “I think the key for agents, is picking a solution where you can eRate and eContract all of your products in one spot. If they have to go to multiple websites, that is certainly not making things efficient for your dealers at all.”

David Trinder, CEO, F&I Administration Solutions, explained that some years ago, they adopted the strategy of linking their administration solution to as many dealer facing menus and other selling solutions as there are out there. He thought it was surprising to see that there are close to 30 menus and other systems to which they are now connected. “We have customers who are very close to having 100% of their volume being done electronically and we have customers who are now coming up with products that they are only processing electronically. So they are going to the dealer and saying if you want to sell this product, you have to process it electronically. With the extent of our connectivity, this strategy works very successfully.”

By doing this, Trinder says they have made it possible for an agent to walk into a dealership, ask the dealer’s preference in the way they present and sell their products, and easily align themselves with that preference. “Despite the connectivity part, at the end of the day, it still takes some effort to get to 100%. You can put all of the technology you want in front of an F&I manager but often, there still has to be some incentive to get them to use it. However, we have seen that even a little bit of incentive can be quite successful.”

Brent Allen, COO and president, StoneEagle, says StoneEagle is most known for its reporting functionalities. He was asked about how the industry would put eSignature into place. “We generally agree that if the manufacturer started to employ eSignature, and if the bank started to use more eContracting and eSignature, that would force the ‘I’ side to adopt it too, because the dealer would soon be more comfortable with it.” In the last year, Toyota was pushing 65% and Ford was right behind them. Nissan is also pushing the use of eSignature on the finance side. “We have seen a hard push in 2013 and it will get stronger in 2014. As a result, I think we will start to see a lot more acceptance on the ‘I’ side and that flows directly into what this panel is talking about – more acceptance of eContracting and eSignature itself is the key piece.”

So how do we move everything into this seamless process that everyone wants to achieve?

Garlich said that in his experience, the reticence in moving over to eContracting is not because they don’t like it, it’s because of the workflow, which he describes as longer and more convoluted. People simply aren’t going to jump on board when this is the case. “If F&I guys could go ahead and produce the document set and have it ready to go after the customer makes a menu selection – and do it all in one area – then I think you would find a lot of them would do it.”

While everyone has used the traditional key metrics, Garlich commented that StoneEagle is one of the leaders in reporting how that is changing from the traditional spreadsheet general agents have had for years into what we have today.

Reporting Tools

“We have had requests for more graphic presentation tools,” Allen pointed out, “We have been delivering a lot more reports via email – which you have to be careful with – you can’t put any personal and private information in an email but you can put statistics in an email.”

Allen continued, “We built a very specific app for an ipad or a tablet, so that when you sign in, the first thing it does is a pure graphic presentation. It’s bar charts and pie charts, because that was the feedback we got. You walk into a store and really the eye candy is the chart, not so much the data and then we work backwards into the data. So really they see what they want to see – in red, yellow, green – and then you drill down backwards into the actual data.” Oddly enough, Allen reported that despite the original push for this type of presentation, the adoption of it has not been as big as might have been expected.

Nowicki explained how SmartMenu, his reporting tool, can be used to show the results of using a menu versus not using a menu. “With our reporting tool, we do offer a lot of analytics that compare what numbers look like with and without a menu, and with and without certain sales tools on the menu. It gives the agents a way not only to measure those numbers, but to hold F&I managers accountable. If you can go into the dealer and clearly show a PRU difference of $300 per car with a menu in place, versus without, it’s a very easy sale. On the accountability side, you can now go in, look at every single deal and ensure that every single deal gets a menu and follows whatever process you put in place. So if your process is that every customer sees a particular type of menu, and has particular sales tool usage, you can monitor all that very easily from home or your iPad or wherever else.”

Another thing agents are demanding are more analytics that they can control. Nowicki continued, “it’s not a matter of us sending a report that’s in PDF form – that’s kind of locked down. I think what most of our agents expect is, in a perfect world, you would all like to take out your ipad, run reports, slice and dice data and drill down to what you’re looking for. We are working on developing reports that are interactive, give you more analytics, more capability, more filtering on demand, etc., all on your ipad.”

Mobile reporting has been around a while and has developed a lot in the past year. According to Trinder, mobile is the way to go. He thinks the industry will be fully on board with mobile reporting by the end of the year. He pointed out that the most important aspect of mobile reporting and tablets is the immediacy of data. “In my view, one of the real values of mobile and tablets is giving agents data on the road in real time. If you are looking for something that’s going to change your life in the coming year, as much as the technology within the dealerships might change, I think your expectations about how much data you’re getting and what you are going to understand from it is where you should be looking. Just before you walk in the dealership you should be able to see what kind of transactions they have done and how many there are. With these statistics, you can go and have the right kind of conversation with the dealer – right then and there.”

Is the F&I Office Going Online?

Garlich asked the panel how processes could be adapted to take into account the change in how people are buying cars and doing transactions. Millennials, especially, are wanting to do business away from the dealership.

Reed predicted we will see a lot more of the F&I office online in the future. “With the way that people are evolving in how they use the Internet and what they are demanding, I think that they are ultimately going to demand that the industry move the F&I office out of the office and move it more online. That’s going to be a big change for the industry. The goal here is not to lose F&I income; it’s to be able to give the customers what they want online and still maintain the profitability that you have today. I would say that in the next 5 years this is going to be a significant challenge to everyone in this room. And there’s not a magic answer. People who are trying to do some of this online today aren’t real good at it. I haven’t seen a really good result around this, or a very good process, but I think people have to start trying it, thinking about it and talking about how everyone is going to work together to make that happen as an industry, as consumers are going to be demanding that in the future.”

Others in the panel disagreed, including the moderator, whose immediate response, “that’s a bummer!” brought laughter from the audience.

Garlich said he sees the problem with selling remotely being that for many, they don’t have a process – their process is just a telephone call. “I can tell you we are not going to run 50-60% service contract penetrations trying to sell stuff over the phone, but I do think the consumer is going to call the shots on this. If they decide they want us to come to them in some way, shape or form, we need to start thinking about what that looks like and thinking about how what we do in a face to face environment can be translated into a remote environment. I think that what that means for us as general agents is that we change our selling style and our training processes to take into account these changes in the consumer preference.”

Trinder said he was not convinced that even in five years, most sales won’t still be happening in the dealership. He described a huge gap between the provider and the customer, with the agent and the dealership in between. “When the customer goes to look online, they are going to be on the dealership’s website more than likely. And the dealership isn’t exactly selling products from one provider. So the dealership has got to present products that aren’t theirs and which also may be from many providers. It’s a very interesting challenge we face and I am not sure how easily we’re going to solve it.”

From the perspective of selling, rather than consumer demand, Reed pointed out that more consumers are going to want self-selection and transparency of the process; so for a certain segment of the market, its going to be less about how you are going to sell, versus, how you are going to present. That involves a different skill set and a different approach. He brought to light an interesting comparison from his own experience as a consumer. “I go into an electronic store to buy a computer today and I know what’s going to happen once I say ‘I’ll take it.’ They are going to start hitting me up to buy a warranty for that computer. They grind me, grind me, grind me, but I say no, no, no. But if I go online and I buy my computer, configure my computer and then they say, ‘how about an extended warranty?’ and all these other add on products, I am more likely to buy in the self-selection process like they have online, than in the store when I am hounded by a salesperson.”

Norwicki countered Reed’s scenario and agreed with Garlich. “I don’t think that in five years we are going to have this ‘amazon.com’ approach to buying cars where you get online, complete the transaction online and the car just shows up in your driveway. That might come in time, and maybe in some urban areas, but I don’t think that’s going to happen anytime soon.” However, he noted that we are already seeing customers who have done their research on the vehicle they want to purchase, and they come to the dealership expecting a short transaction. And they don’t expect to be sold in the F&I office. “[The focus] is not so much on the sales of your products, but on the education of our customer. They can find out anything they want about a vehicle online, but they would be hard pressed to go to a dealer’s website and find out anything about F&I products . . . that information just isn’t there!”

Norwicki described the view held by some trainers, that pre-exposure to products is not advisable, as a “dinosaur philosophy.” He went on to say, “I think customers today demand and expect education and that’s really what our focus should be on – educating customers on these products, not necessarily conducting the whole sale online.”

At the end of the day, some of it just boils down to customer preference and personality. Allen commented that as a hands-on person himself, he would always want to go into a dealership, see and touch the actual car and talk to a person.

In conclusion, Nowicki summed it up with his final comments, “I think that the holy grail for eContracting is what we are striving for today. EContracting of all the ancillary products, all the service contracts, and eSignatures on all those documents, but there are obviously pieces missing – the lender funding packet, the odometer statement, the title, apps, all that stuff. So clearly we are not there yet. We don’t have 100% of that documentation done electronically, but don’t take that to mean there’s not value in using what’s already there.”

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F&I Admin Announces Integration with Paylink


Chicago – F&I Administration Solutions LLC (F&I Admin) announced the integration of PayLink Payment Plans financing services into its dealer electronic rating and electronic contracting solution. Now service and F&I departments within dealerships can automatically generate contracts with 0% financing, flexible payment terms and multiple payment options for F&I products purchased outside of the auto loan directly from F&I Admin’s dealer electronic contracting solution.

“We continue to look for ways to maximize efficiency and help drive service plan sales for dealers. Providing real-time connectivity with PayLink makes our electronic contracting process a fast, effortless and profitable solution for dealers,” said David Trinder, CEO, F&I Admin. “Creating this level of integration has streamlined the process of selling service contracts to customers by eliminating double entry, increasing accuracy and saving time.”

Connecting the electronic contracting solution to PayLink’s online financing makes it possible for a F&I manager to immediately offer PayLink financing options to a customer when presenting the F&I Admin electronic contracting solution. When an option is selected, only the additional required data has to be inputted for an application to be complete. As a result, the F&I manager not only has all options immediately available at the point of sale, but applying for the chosen option is quick and easy.

“PayLink’s integration with F&I Admin streamlines the processing of financing F&I products outside of the auto loan, making it easier for dealerships to benefit from using the 0% interest payment plans PayLink has to offer,” said Rebecca Howard, CEO, PayLink Payment Plans. “Our partnership makes the process faster and easier by eliminating the need for duplication of information and completion of multiple forms.”

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F&I Administration Solutions Announces the Release of New Dealer Web Interface for SCS Auto


CHICAGO ─ F&I Administration Solutions, LLC, provider of software for the administration of automotive F&I products, is pleased to announce the release of their new dealer portal to SCS Auto, the DAP 8.3. The release is as a result of a complete rewrite which allowed F&I Admin to make holistic changes, particularly to the F&I process from quote to contract.

The DAP is branded as the F&I product provider’s site and enables dealers, credit unions, and other producers to get quotes, print contracts, view claims, complete electronic remittance, view reports, and much more.

“In order to deliver the efficiencies that dealers need, we decided that a complete rewrite was necessary,” said David Trinder, CEO of F&I Admin. “Starting with a clean slate allowed us to streamline the dealer experience so that every action is achieved in as few clicks as possible. The remarkable dealer adoption since the 8.3 release shows that when dealers are offered an efficient process, they will use it.”

“Most systems require the F&I Manager to click through various screens to get a quote and even more screens to print a contract. On the DAP, quotes and contracts can be generated from one screen, and with as few clicks as possible. Enter vehicle information and get quotes. To save the quote, simply enter the customer name, and to generate a contract, enter the customer address.

In addition, DMS integration, sophisticated markup settings, templates to package products, and notifications as to why vehicles don’t qualify for certain products make the dealer’s life a lot easier,” said Kumar Kathinokkula, COO of F&I Admin. “Built-in access for agents, electronic remittance, a comprehensive reporting capability and many other features have also been added or refined.”

F&I Admin provides a comprehensive administration solution for F&I product providers through SCS Auto. The DAP 8.3 is a major element of that solution, connecting providers to their dealers. SCS Auto automates and streamlines the F&I product administration process and is specifically designed to support VSC, GAP, prepaid maintenance, theft, limited warranty, key replacement, appearance protection and much more. In addition, SCS Auto is electronically connected to 15 menu systems for rating and contracting.

“There is no F&I Administration system available today that connects providers to dealers in a more comprehensive way than SCS Auto, and this release of the DAP extends us even further ahead of the competition” concluded Trinder.

Additional information about SCS Auto can be found at www.fiadmin.com.

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