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Chris Murray

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Deconstructing the BDC

Heresy! You can't say that! You can't even think that! The BDC is the heartbeat of the dealership! The BDC is 40, 50, 60 or 70% of the sales at our dealership! Why would you even dare think that!

Please, calm down. Not every dealership has a Body Shop, not every dealership preps their own deliveries and not every dealership should have a BDC. One size fits no one! 

I have the enviable perspective of working in over 10 distinctly different markets throughout the US and I can say now that a BDC is not for everyone and not for most dealerships that sell less than 1000 units per year yet that is where I seem to find most BDC departments.

The average BDC that I have encountered is staffed with two full time agents and a working manager. The payroll expense, before bonus tops out at $81,500 at an average hourly compensation of $12.00 per hour and 13% for payroll expenses such as So. Sec., insurance, DBL etc... This is an enormous expense on its own but when you factor in bonuses, vendor fees, employee benefits, etc... the cost quickly tops $100,000.00 per year.

The store that sells and delivers 1000 units per year will employ 7 salespeople and two managers. That puts the average salesperson at just under 12 deliveries yet we all know there is most likely a 20 car person in that group and a house-mouse (manager/dealer pet) that gets 15 deals a month served up on a platter. The remaining 6 sell and deliver a whopping 8 cars a month.

So there is a $100 per unit charged to support the BDC in the most, if you believe our contemporaries, competitive market in the history of our industry! How can we possibly afford to do that? Is it worth  that? Are the salespeople that incompetent that allowing them to answer phones would be a disaster? Are they so busy selling that answering the phone, internet inquiries and texts is all but impossible?

 

 

 

 

 

Elizabeth Powers

I agree a one size fits all approach does not exist.  I have always thought that a BDC is just an added expense but because of our lack of training sales people it becomes a necessary one.  I have operated some very successful BDCs for some large dealership groups and I am always amazed to find that the managers have been unable to hold sales people accountable.  Managers must create a culture of the CRM and follow up.  If they do that we can see expenses decrease and customer satisfaction go up because the floor can take over.  It is a daily exercise.  Depending on the size of a dealership I always thought it would be neat to assign one manager to desking and another one to getting (getting traffic by strictly managing the staff).

Chris Murray

I was headed in that direction. What you read was saves as a draft yet, as has happened in the past, it published. I will no longer be writing blog posts for Driving Sales because of this problem. Had I had ample time to finish the post most BDC proponents would have enjoyed the post.

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