Mechanic looking at a vehicle to determine if it needs to go through the reconditioning processDealers who purchase vehicles at auction will often send those cars through a reconditioning process. It typically takes an average dealer seven to 10 days to make sure a car is ready to sell. How much of that time includes the reconditioning process? Depending on the state of the acquired vehicle, the amount of time reconditioning takes can vary. However, there are always steps dealers can take to improve the amount of time it takes for a vehicle to go through the reconditioning process.

Define the current reconditioning workflow
Many top dealers are able to recondition and have their vehicles customer-ready in approximately five days on average. In order to figure out how a dealer can recondition vehicles faster, it’s essential to know what the current process looks like and how long it takes one vehicle to go through that system. Take note of different ways to shave time off of that process.

Examine key bottlenecks
The people who understand where the most bottlenecks are in the reconditioning process are the people who take care of the reconditioning process each and every day. Ask for their input and their thoughts on how the reconditioning process could be improved. Are there tools available that would streamline employee communication and vehicle status? What individual is responsible for each part of the reconditioning process?

Develop an atmosphere of discipline
Dealership operations are a team effort. A team committed to reducing the amount of time it takes to recondition a vehicle can yield notable results in both dealership efficiencies and profitability.

Though it might seem like a waste of time to some dealers, consider what shaving days off of the reconditioning process can mean for a dealership’s cash flow. Each day a car sits on a dealership lot it costs a dealer money. Average vehicle holding costs can average $32-$40 per day. If one vehicle is front-line ready in three fewer days that can mean a savings of $120. Multiply that savings by the number of average vehicles a dealer sells in a year, that can mean significant savings.

Use Auction Reconditioning
For dealers that might not have an on-site reconditioning operation, it might be worth considering the reconditioning options some auctions have on-site. Reconditioning through the auction can help you move your inventory more quickly through the process, if you do not already have a vehicle reconditioning process in place. For example, Manheim auctions will frequently offer a number of reconditioning services

Take some time to evaluate how quickly your dealership accomplishes the reconditioning process. What steps can your dealership take to reduce the time it takes for a vehicle to go through the reconditioning process?