Tag Archive | "EFG Companies"

EFG Companies Launches Training Portal for F&I Managers

DALLAS — F&I product provider EFG Companies today announced the launch of a new dynamic digital portal designed to boost F&I producer knowledge, reinforce training learnings, and reduce the cost of a poor hiring decision for a dealership.

The EFG Learning Opps Through Virtual Engagement, or LOVE, was developed in response to complaints from dealers and general managers about the short-term impact of sending F&I producers to training. When training isn’t reinforced in the dealership, officials noted, improvements are quickly negated by diminishing returns.

“It’s clear that using multi-sensory learning methods with interactive tools better enables F&I managers to effectively deliver measurable results to a dealership’s bottom line,” said EFG Companies President and CEO John Pappanastos. “That’s why we developed EFG LOVE for our F&I class graduates.”

In addition to fortifying the lessons learned from EFG’s in-classroom training, EFG LOVE equips dealers with information and best practices on how to both sell to, and employ, the soon-to-be largest generation in the workforce with the most buying power — Millennials.

Numerous industry studies have shown that the automotive retail industry faces a recruiting and staffing crisis. The 2017 National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Workforce Study reported that retail automotive suffered from a 43% turnover rate, an 88% attrition rate among female new hires, and a below average rate of Millennial new hires when compared to other industries. Additionally, 65% of dealers state that recruiting and hiring is their No. 1 challenge — greater than customer acquisition or generating revenue.

Officials note the company has placed hundreds of top performers at automotive dealerships across the country in its more than 40-year history. This has resulted in the deliberate buildout of a core-competency sourcing model to identify the core qualities of top performers. EFG LOVE pairs this top performer profile with industry statistics and trends to better enable dealers to develop high-performing teams.

“EFG LOVE helps shorten the onboarding time for new hires, keeps employees motivated, and accelerates the knowledge growth needed for a successful career,” said Steve Roennau, vice president of training and compliance with EFG Companies. “We created the content to enable the user to self-select actionable lessons in multiple digital formats. The more a producer can easily select materials that help them overcome their daily challenges, the more they will display the successful behaviors that they learned in our training.”

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EFG Companies: Dealers Must Embrace Industry Paradigm Shift

DALLAS, Texas — Staffing and customer engagement models are the top issues impacting the future health of the retail automotive industry, EFG Companies President and CEO John Pappanastos said today.

The F&I product provider’s chief executive delivered his comments as part of a state of the industry address the company posted on its website. Pappanastos encourage dealership principals and senior managers to quickly address those issues or risk becoming a dinosaur in today’s rapidly changing consumer car-buying mode, noting that digital buying habits, millennial and Gen Z consumers, and women are forcing industry change.

According to the National Automobile Dealers Association’s 2017 Workforce Study, retail automotive suffered from a 43% turnover rate — up two points from 2016. Additionally, the automotive industry experienced an 88% attrition rate among female new hires, and a below average rate of millennial new hires when compared to other industries.

Pappanastos said many retail automotive businesses lack a comprehensive plan to become an employer of choice, and instead rely heavily on traditional “bell-to-bell” hours, commission-only payment plans, and limited training. He urged them to immediately develop a strategy for hiring, training, and promoting the best and brightest employees to operate in a world where consumers are demanding a more digital process with a better customer experience.

The executive noted that a single poor hiring decision in F&I can easily result in up to $75,000 in lost profit due to onboarding costs and lost production, adding that the retail automotive industry’s focus on daily operations also hampers leadership development and obscures the growth path for millennial hires who, as a group, require opportunities for promotion.

The F&I product executive also touched on recent research from Cox Automotive, which showed that 80% of consumers want to complete at least half of the car-buying process digitally. He also cited a 2018 Deloitte study showing that “dealers create a fragmented and inconsistent approach to the customer,” which leads to inefficient customer contact, inconsistent messaging, and ultimately failure to sell and build loyalty.

“While I realize change is difficult, dealership principals must incorporate greater consumer-facing digital platforms into their dealerships,” said Pappanastos, adding that hiring employees who are experts in online customer engagement and digital sales approaches represents one solution. “Failure to do so will result in lost revenue. We must remember the old adage of ‘meet the customer where they are.’ And today’s customer is clearly online.”

Pappanastos also encouraged dealerships not to lose sight of compliance. “Job skills are easy to assess. What’s difficult is finding candidates who have solid character,” the executive said. “During these tumultuous times, dealerships must maintain a high degree of integrated compliance. The resulting fines, and damage to reputation, can result in significant business loss due to very clear and public online postings and reviews.”

Pappanastos remarks during his state of the industry address focused on the future health of the retail automotive industry and sounded a wakeup call to dealership principals to quickly embrace changing consumer buying preferences. He also encouraged future millennial and Gen Z employees to seek out careers in retail automotive, noting that exciting changes and their opportunity to make industrywide impact.

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EFG Companies 1st “Administrator of Size” to Provide Dealers with Automatic Claims Approvals through Self-Adjudication Technology

DALLAS – EFG Companies, the innovator behind the award-winning Hyundai Assurance program, announced today the launch of EFG Express Claims, one of the industry’s first claims automation systems enabling dealerships to self-adjudicate claims and receive automatic approvals. For more information, visit http://bit.ly/EFGClaims.

EFG Express Claims automates the claims adjudication process using self-service features within DRIVE, EFG’s client portal. Using EFG Express Claims, dealership service managers have the ability to:

  • search for open contracts on behalf of their customers and see exact coverage levels;
  • open and submit claims;
  • automatically adjudicate and approve claims meeting certain parameters set by dealership management and EFG; and,
  • receive automatic payment by corporate credit card within one hour of claim approval.

“In today’s tight sales environment, dealers are focusing their attention on creating repeat business through the service drive and dealership-wide improvements in customer service,” said John Stephens, Executive Vice President, EFG Companies. “That’s why we developed the EFG Express Claims platform. Think about it from the service manager’s point of view. When a customer does not have their vehicle service contract information, which happens quite often, there is usually a multitude of phone calls and emails to obtain the information, causing delay in both filing the claim and getting the vehicle in the queue for repairs. With EFG Express Claims, the manager can look up all in-force contracts for any given vehicle. They can electronically submit the claim and receive instant approval. The customer is happy because work can begin more quickly. The service manager is happy because they can process the work on the vehicle more quickly and secure payment faster.”

For those claims that fall outside of the parameters for automatic approval, EFG Express Claims reduces the manual process of calling a claims service representative, and repeating all the necessary information for them to enter it into EFG’s system. Instead, the platform submits the claim and populates it within EFG’s internal system for claims processing. This further speeds up the entire process across the board.

“Each year, EFG endeavors to expand the company’s training, protocols, and software solutions in the effort to provide expeditious and high-quality customer service for contract holders and dealership service managers,” said Ken Overly, Vice President, Operations, EFG Companies. “Ninety-six percent of our claims are paid in one hour. We maintain an average 26 second speed to answer, and 67 percent of our total claims are one-call claims. However, no matter how quickly our team can answer calls, fill out claims information, and process the claim, it still takes time to open and close a claim. With EFG Express Claims, we make the process instantaneous in some cases, and drastically cutting claim processing time down for more complicated claims.”

EFG’s claims adjusters maintain an average of 12 years of experience, and are ASE and BenchmarkPortal-certified. Since 2010, EFG has invested more than $17 million in technology resources and IT development, with the goal of making EFG the easiest and most efficient company with which to conduct business. In addition to EFG Express Claims, EFG provides full contract automation, online contract cancellation quotes, online cancellation, a sophisticated skill-based routing system directing complex claims to the best qualified adjuster, and an online Parts Wizard to identify the highest quality parts from suppliers across the nation, at the lowest price, and in real time.

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EFG Companies Launches Enhanced Lifetime Wrap Coverage to Complement Drive Forever Worry Free Limited Lifetime Powertrain Protection

DALLAS – EFG Companies, the innovator behind the award-winning Hyundai Assurance program, today announced the launch of the Drive Forever Worry Free Lifetime Wrap, an enhancement to the company’s market-differentiating limited powertrain protection. For more information, visit http://bit.ly/2lUkufY.

The Drive Forever Lifetime Wrap is designed to help dealers close more deals at a higher gross with improved product pricing, expanded eligibility, and an underlying complimentary coverage component.

The wrap is a second coverage upgrade option for dealers to utilize when providing customers with complimentary Drive Forever Worry Free Limited Powertrain Protection. Until now, dealers had the option to upgrade customers to a full vehicle service contract with terms up to 96 months/120,000 miles. The Drive Forever Lifetime Wrap provides expanded coverage options with no mileage or time limits.

With the Drive Forever Lifetime Wrap, cost-conscious consumers will be better able to preserve their vehicle’s value and their savings. Beyond the benefits related to vehicle repairs, the coverage is fully transferrable, further enabling consumers to negotiate beyond just the value of their vehicle at resale.

Drive Forever Worry Free is a limited lifetime powertrain program for dealers to offer complimentary as a way to differentiate themselves from the competition. The Drive Forever Lifetime Wrap is a exclusionary coverage that matches the lifetime term of the complimentary product. The coverage upgrade includes roadside assistance, rental reimbursement, and a standard $100 deductible for the first three years.

Interest rates are expected to rise three times in 2017 and analysts are predicting lower used-car values as off-lease vehicles enter the market. With an uncertain economic outlook, dealers are looking for programs that create more foot traffic and help to close more deals at a higher margin.

“With dealer profit margins being squeezed in recent years, we’ve taken an in-depth look at how we at EFG can measurably facilitate dealer profitability, and customer retention.” said John Pappanastos, President and CEO of EFG Companies. “In our ongoing contract holder research, we evaluate our protection products with regard to the value perceived by the consumer. In the case of Drive Forever, on average, 82 percent of the time, contract holders rank it as a top 3 reason as to why they chose to purchase from a participating dealer. Based on this extensive research and ongoing feedback from dealers, we created the Lifetime Wrap as a natural extension of a program that provides distinct benefits to both dealers and consumers.”

Beyond the market-differentiating benefits of EFG’s complimentary Drive Forever Worry Free program, dealers have a better opportunity to stay ahead of the competition with an upgrade that gives customers enhanced coverage for the life of their vehicle, not just their loan.

This product gives dealerships an immediate means of capturing market share and increasing profit margins by turning the sales process into a more value-based conversation.

As always, EFG backs this new product offering with its strategic engagement model from an AFIP-certified field team, and a nationally award-winning claims administration team that is ASE-certified and recognized as a Center of Excellence by Benchmark Portal.

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EFG Companies Enables Dealers to Achieve Greater Compliant Profitability with Common Sense Compliance

DALLAS – EFG Companies, the innovator behind the award-winning Hyundai Assurance program, today announced the launch of the company’s Common Sense Compliance® platform. The Common Sense Compliance platform was designed to ease the challenges facing retail automotive dealers and take the difficulty out of compliance by presenting the principles of compliance in an easy-to-understand manner, using layperson language with practical recommendations. For more information, visit http://bit.ly/2mjbvlI.

“We are in a period of immense change, with shifting consumer demands, a technology revolution and increased compliance oversight,” said John Pappanastos, President and CEO of EFG Companies. “This Common Sense Compliance platform better enables us to help dealers take ownership of the management of a compliant yet profitable business. At EFG, we pride ourselves in advancing the industry through our client engagement model. This platform marks another step towards achieving that goal.”

The Common Sense Compliance platform consists of three primary components:

  1. Monthly podcasts featuring EFG’s AFIP- and NAF-certified Vice President of Compliance, Steve Roennau, hosting discussions with industry experts, dealership principals, general managers, and F&I managers on immediate, simple steps that dealers can take to significantly impact their compliance standards.
  2. A video series with short, informational clips that dealers can share with their teams to make their compliance efforts more effective.
  3. An ongoing compliance initiative for EFG clients that includes in-depth training, dealership assessments, and performance analysis.

“Regardless of what happens with the current presidential administration and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, dealers wade through a myriad of regulations spanning both the state and federal levels,” said Roennau. “Compliance is not going away. So, we’re making it much more digestible, with an actionable, clear, and inexpensive method that focuses on enhancing customer service levels, streamlining operations, and positively influencing future profitability in a compliant manner.”

The first episodes of the video series are available on the EFG YouTube Channel at http://bit.ly/2iGpymU. The first podcast will air on March 22, 2017, at 10 am CST. For more information on EFG’s upcoming podcasts and video series, please visit our website at http://bit.ly/2mjbvlI.


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BenchmarkPortal Names EFG Companies a Center of Excellence Three Years in a Row

DALLAS – EFG Companies, the innovator behind the award-winning Hyundai Assurance program, announced today that it has been certified as a Center of Excellence by BenchmarkPortal for the third year in a row. For more information, visit: http://bit.ly/2lztMvm.

Each year, researchers from BenchmarkPortal audit and validate best-practice metrics drawn from the world’s largest database of objective and quantitative data to determine which contact centers should be awarded this designation. Only contact centers that rank in the top ten percent of those surveyed achieve the award.

“Contact center leaders who seek this certification demonstrate an ongoing commitment to achieving service excellence in the most cost-effective ways possible,” said Bruce Belfore, CEO of BenchmarkPortal. “This certification means that EFG’s center has reached an optimized balance between efficiency and effectiveness.”

EFG has long recognized the importance of providing the highest level of customer service to its clients through high quality employees. In 2016, the company made its mission to better equip those employees with the tools and processes that only enhance their ability to service their clients and customers.

This effort started with the implementation of the company’s proprietary part sourcing platform, the Parts Wizard. In early 2016, EFG launched the Parts Wizard to reduce client reinsurance exposure, streamline claims administration and increase customer satisfaction. The Parts Wizard automates the manual process of sourcing parts for vehicle repairs.

Traditionally, claims administrators must research vehicle parts on several vendor websites, before negotiating with a service center. The Parts Wizard sources parts from all EFG-approved vendors at once, drastically shortening the time it takes to research parts by up to 30 minutes per claim. In addition, the technology prioritizes results based on availability and price to factor in to the decision process.

To further ensure the success of every customer contact, EFG invested in and implemented Castel DetectTM LIVE Speech Analytics to provide EFG claims adjusters and management teams with real-time insight into the health of every call. Each adjuster has a direct feed on their monitor of analysis regarding call content, including:

  • specific phrases;
  • agitation level; and,
  • higher than acceptable instances of talking over one another; etc.

Based on the course of the conversation, adjusters receive on-screen notifications to help guide them to more intuitively and successfully steer the conversation. In addition, managers have access to all adjuster analytics and receive notifications to step in to conversations that need their attention without the adjuster actually having to seek them out for assistance. Since implementing this software, EFG has seen a decrease in formal escalations, thereby increasing the number of successful calls and high customer satisfaction ratings.

“With achievements like these, we intend to continue to push the industry to serve contract holders more expertly, efficiently, and respectfully,” said John Pappanastos, President and CEO, EFG Companies. “This will inevitably promote a more positive overall customer experience and decisively impact the growth and success of the consumer protection product industry.”

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