GM recently announced an extensive set of IT guidelines for its dealerships. The comprehensive guidelines provide minimum, ideal and optimal levels of technology, security and software that dealerships are expected to deploy.

Chrysler dealerships may be wondering whether the auto manufacturer will issue a similar set of mandates. If so, the question will be whether your dealership is ready. Fortunately, if you’re looking for technology services for Chrysler dealerships, Blue Star IT Services & Solutions has the expertise and industry knowledge to assess, recommend and implement solutions.

What Are the GM Guidelines?

The GM guidelines require dealerships to meet highly detailed technical specs in all facets of technology, including:

  • Hardware and software
  • Wireless and wired networks
  • Bandwidth
  • Data and desktop security
  • Disaster recovery and business continuity

The automaker details the minimum acceptable level of solutions in each category but urges dealerships to strive for the optimal level of technology.

What Could This Mean For My Dealership?

GM has set the standard with its far-reaching IT guidelines. Chrysler dealership computer services and support will be needed in most cases should that manufacturer issue similar recommended technology. If that situation arises, dealers should look for a technology provider that has experience with auto dealerships, can provide a comprehensive technology evaluation and work with internal IT staff to implement the required equipment and resources.

What Services Are Provided to Auto Dealerships?

In addition to comprehensive assessment, consulting and project management services, managed IT providers provide many technology solutions to auto dealerships. Among the most common are:

  • Helpdesk services
  • Hardware and software support
  • Wireless network configuration and support
  • Network optimization
  • Network monitoring
  • Cloud services and support
  • Data backup
  • Business continuity and disaster recovery
  • Software consulting on popular applications like Microsoft Office 365

Having the right technology partner can keep your dealership compliant with any dealer-imposed guidelines and provide the monitoring, updating and operational support that keeps your employees online and productive.

How Does Computer Service Providers Help Complex Dealership Network Needs?

Wireless networks are among the most complicated issues for auto dealerships. Dealerships need to provide many different types of systems and access. First, they need solutions that provide connectivity and access to data for employees across the dealership — the showroom floor, remote lots, service areas, finance, customer service and executive offices. Car lots may be some distance from the dealership itself, providing a greater connectivity challenge.

Also, your customers expect to be connected and able to access a public WiFi network while they are waiting to meet with sales staff or finance officers or access documents stored on a mobile device.

Managing these networks can get complicated. That’s why you need a partner that can configure and monitor your system to deliver premium service to employees and customers alike. These networks need to be separate and have rigorous authentication protocols. For example, the GM guidelines have specific requirements about how visitors access, authenticate and agree to policy terms.

Will A Managed IT Services Provider Support Our Software?

At Blue Star, we know that dealerships use a wide range of software products. We have extensive knowledge of the software used for inventory management, customer relations management, leads management, outside financing and buy-here-pay-here tools, accounting, digital marketing, and insurance interfaces.

We help dealerships create linkages and interfaces between the different software solutions. We also advise companies on how to maximize the tools being used and recommend better, more affordable solutions, if necessary.

Can Managed IT Services Help With Our Websites?

We understand that many auto dealerships maintain multiple websites, including those for the dealership itself, inventory, service management and fleet management. Keeping these websites operational and maintaining the data that feeds much of the content is vital. You need an IT partner that can help you integrate your websites while making sure that data processes run smoothly and, wherever possible, are automated.

How Can I Help Employees Collaborate and Be Productive?

You want your employees connected in many ways. It starts with the necessary office productivity tools.

The GM guidelines recommend using Microsoft Office 365, a web-based version of the popular software suite that includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint and other commonly used apps, along with Outlook for email communication. Blue Star assists dealerships with the installation of Office 365 and the migration of existing productivity solutions and data to the cloud-based model.

What’s more, with Office 365, remote employees can access the tools and data easily from anywhere and on any device. These apps improve workflow, file management and collaboration.

We also help with other connectivity solutions, from the phone systems you use to video conferencing.

How Do We Protect Our Systems and Data?

You need peace of mind that the systems and data you store are protected from cybercriminals and hackers. Your dealership technology plan should include next-generation firewalls that protect the system’s perimeter and are monitored to detect suspicious behavior. You also need device-level protections that safeguard against spam, phishing and other malware that can lead an unsuspecting user to give access unwittingly to someone who shouldn’t be on your network.

When your Chrysler dealership needs computer services that improve operations, meet industry guidelines and keep data protected, look to Blue Star. For more information, contact us today.

Published on 18th November 2018 by Jon Morningstar

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