CarVue’s simple but smart garage management system in the cloud has been recognised for innovation by leading online trade website

The 2014 Tradeout awards, held in association with CAP, celebrate the best companies in the automotive industry, and CarVue was delighted to be amongst the three companies nominated by dealers across the UK this year as the ‘Innovation of the Year‘.

This category is dedicated to finding the product or company that solves a perpetual problem in the trade, and one that dealers can’t live without…or as Tradeouts put it, ‘has blown you away this year’.

With CarVue’s simple but smart cloud management application, innovation is evident in abundance. It’s a world first: a globally available, secure platform, that is accessible from any web-enabled device that enables sales and workshop businesses in any country to tailor a management system to perfectly suit their business. We’ve introduced a free 30-day, zero obligation trial period to demonstrate our confidence in CarVue. Users can sign-up for the trial and moments later, be using the full system, including a bundle of smart vehicle and address look-ups to speed up these common tasks. Still only minutes from registering and logging in, a contact, vehicle and detailed job card can be added to CarVue effortlessly, and a professional, personalised invoice produced and emailed to a customer. To our knowledge, there’s no management system anywhere in the world where you can expect to sign-up, demo and produce a job invoice in under 5 minutes…

CarVue’s support is omnipresent through the product via an extensive, integrated knowledgebase (many with video guides) to help users when they need it. There’s also Live Chat and a support email widget always on hand for quick answers or to log an issue. As with other leading cloud services, upgrading to the latest app version is a seamless process to users; it doesn’t require any effort on their part. When a new release goes out, all users see it the very next time they log in to the app. Fixes for bugs are investigated and remedied extremely quickly, with hotfix releases then put out globally.

CarVue has no set-up, installation or training fees and offers monthly pay-as-you-go subscriptions to three package levels that will suit all businesses and budgets. In an industry so used to reliance on expensive hardware, installation, support, upgrades and training, signing up and using the application is saving businesses significant amounts of money, and removing the need to rely on expensive IT professionals and hardware to install and maintain a management system. With freedom to change up or down package levels whenever they want and a financial commitment of just a month at a time, users can rest assured that CarVue can adapt rapidly should business circumstances ever change, with no long contracts to sit out and wait, or the risk of being stuck on an old, unsupported version of a management system with big upgrade costs.

CarVue is also demonstrating innovation in its approach to integration. The traditional ‘walled garden’ closed system of dealer management systems produces big inefficiencies in cost and labour in workshops: double keying, more systems needed, and a loss of communication along the way. CarVue is the opposite; it embraces the open nature of today’s cloud-based world. We have created an ecosystem of applications that can input to and output from CarVue. The end result? Companies are able to pick and choose the tools that best serve their needs, in the knowledge that their chosen application will communicate with CarVue. It also means that the age of the DMS ‘doing every job adequately’ is coming to an end. Many of the traditional, server-based DMS systems are spun off from a core accounting function (which they perform well!). Eventually, a lack of integration with other best-in-class providers stretches their application to cover all the different operational needs of their userbase… They step further  away from where their expertise lies and what they do and know best, and as a result, their users end up without the best tool to manage that aspect of their business. CarVue is like a breath of fresh air: it excels in the management of customers, vehicles and jobs in workshops and showrooms. For the management of accounts, or for CRM, for example, we know that there are plenty of amazing software products out there that can expertly manage these sides of the business…so we let them do just that! The end result is compatibility with the systems users choose to use, and not the sheperding into a ‘one size fits all’ app that tries to do everything. An open integration policy results in the better management of businesses. It’s as simple and clear as that.

What’s of most interest to CarVue’s growing userbase is the evolution of the application, and the part each and every one of them plays in it. CarVue gives every user a voice, so whether there’s a new feature they’d like, a change to the way a part of it works, or an integration with another application they want, there is an open platform for them to suggest their idea. Importantly, it’s a level playing field where every user has the same clout. We believe we’ve created the first democratic management system (a new DMS!) for the automotive sector. The future path of the product lies in the hands of those central to it: the users. You won’t find a development roadmap dictated on high by the software company, or heavily influenced by its biggest bill-payers. The roadmap for CarVue lies in the suggestions, votes, comments and voices of all of its users.

And that’s perhaps the most exciting, innovative change CarVue provides: a product that continues to adapt, incorporating the wants and needs of the majority of its users, and talking to a multitude of other best-in-class systems. An exciting place to be if you’re an automotive business, isn’t it…