Digital Transformation of Auto Services
Data ownership has been something of a thorny issue over the last decade. However, one Silicon Valley-based company has come up with an innovative solution, as Alex Taylor reports
Cars are an essential part of our daily lives. Be it for driving to work or to school, over a billion people across the globe depend on their cars every day. And just like humans, cars are also subjected to wear and tear, which requires occasional visits to auto shops for maintenance or repairs.
This may seem like a simple process, but it can take several days for a car to be repaired and another mode of transport would need to be arranged, costing car owners more time and money. Then, there is the fact that most people don’t trust auto service providers even though many of them provide honest services. To top it off, there is the stress and anxiety that comes with worrying about the cost of the repair. As a result of all this trouble, many people avoid repairing their cars altogether. This only leads to more issues for car owners and the environment alike. According to roadside assistance surveys and statistics from AAA, Allstate, and many others, 50 percent of car owners who avoid repairing their cars end up calling roadside assistance when their cars break down in the middle of the road, ultimately costing them more money and trouble than they were avoiding in the first place. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) found that poor car maintenance can produce up to 30 percent excess emission and 40 percent reduction in fuel efficiency, further damaging the environment.
“digital transformation can be applied to the auto services industry to make it more affordable, trustworthy, and accessible”
Technology is now being used to transform many traditional services like doctor’s visits with over-the-Internet remote consultations. This makes it easy for both patients and doctors to access each other and share valuable information remotely on demand. It reduces the costs and time for both the parties while making healthcare more accessible to everyone from anywhere without the need to visit a doctor’s premises, especially for people who are constantly on-the-go. This is an example of digital transformation, the integration of digital technology, such as mobile applications and Internet-based technology, into business processes.
Similarly, digital transformation can be applied to the auto services industry to make it more affordable, trustworthy, and accessible. Most cars built after 1996 feature computers that monitor the health of the car through various sensors and produce self-check health data every second. This data is accessible via the On Board Diagnostics (OBD) port in a car. The info collected via the OBD port can then be compared to historical data and common symptoms experienced by other cars to detect or even predict the reason for a failure.
The next step is to bring digital technology into the process through mobile devices, analytics servers and the Internet. All the data collected from cars can then be analyzed and shared through these technologies, allowing car owners and service providers to quickly understand what is wrong with the car and what fixes are needed. This can reduce cost and time to fix while increasing transparency and hence trust.
Telenyze (Tele + Analyze, meaning remote analysis) is a software platform that is digitally transforming the auto services experience through a mobile application (Auto App) that can be downloaded from the Google Play Store and a web-based platform (Digital Platform) that can be accessed through the Internet from a mobile device or a computer.
The team at Telenyze consists of professionals with years of experience in building complex wireless and transportation technologies and the team has successfully digitized and automated data and service touch points to provide real-time results that will reduce the chances of human errors and miscommunication between service providers and car owners.
“The team has successfully digitized and automated data and service touch points to provide real-time results that will reduce the chances of human errors and miscommunication between service providers and car owners”
The Telenyze Auto App and Digital Platform use OBDII Bluetooth devices to collect data from cars and analyzes it to produce an easy-to-read health report. The health report includes faults and performance issues detected, their causes, and possible fixes. With the Auto App, users can access a list of service providers nearby with reviews and promotions in order to choose the most trustworthy and accessible service provider. In the app itself, users can call or request for appointments and estimates. The built-in messaging system also allows for continuous interaction between the client and service provider. When a client connects with a service provider on the app, the service provider can then go on the Digital Platform to remotely view the car’s health report as well as any descriptions or images provided. The instantaneous communication will save car owners time and reduce anxiety because clients will immediately know what the issue is and do not have to take time out of their day to interact with service providers. Auto service appointments will then also become shorter as service providers can immediately tackle the car’s issues and have clients back on the road within hours. Telenyze isn’t just used for major car problems, it can also be used for routine maintenance appointments such as an oil or tyre change, or a brake replacement.
The Telenyze team learned that most clients choose an auto shop based on trust, budget-friendliness and convenience. Clients base their judgement on online reviews and recommendations from friends and family. Telenyze Auto App and Digital Platform help service providers gain a client’s trust by providing transparent services. Both the client and the service provider will have a deep understanding of the fault, the method of repair, and the costs behind it.
An educated consumer will then see a service provider’s ability to fix the issue at a reasonable price, which increases their loyalty and trust in the service provider. Telenyze is able to reduce the cost and increase the convenience of service providers by increasing their operational efficiencies. Since the basic vehicle info such as make, model, year, Vehicle Identification Number and OBD scan report, along with basic customer info, are already available in digital format, it reduces the routine work and the paper work usually needed when a customer visits a shop.
Now, they can focus more on what matters to them most: serving the customer and fixing the car. On average, they can save 15 minutes per customer, which means they can earn more money by fixing more cars per day and performing more valuable fixes right away, increasing their revenue and decreasing the repair time. The benefits don’t stop there because Telenyze reduces miscommunication with clients, enables quick and easy distribution of digital coupons and promotions, as well as the opportunity to build a good reputation on social media.
Of course, there are many similar looking OBD Apps in the market and more complex and expensive telematics solutions available from car manufacturers. However, most OBD Apps only decode the fault code produced by the car and provide the English translation of the DTC (Diagnostic Trouble Code), but the Telenyze App looks beyond just the fault code. It analyzes all the sensor data to provide more insights and early alerts even when there is no fault code, such as when the car engine is overheating, using more gas or has higher emissions levels. When the sensor data is compared to statistical data, it can predict what might happen in the near future if the issues are not addressed. On top of this, car owners can share all this data and reports with their service providers and monitoring centre and get expert advice or schedule a checkup, avoiding expensive fixes and getting stranded on the road.
The telematics services provided by car manufacturers collect data from cars 24/7 and they provide the report only to their dealers or insurance companies. Car owners who are worried about data privacy don’t see this service as a good fit. In addition, when cars go out of warranty, people typically take their cars to after-market service providers in their neighborhood who don’t have access to the data collected by the car manufacturers. Fortunately, now car owners can have access to their data and share it using Telenyze. Theycan decide if they need 24/7 monitoring or want to use it as needed and share the data with whom they want and when they want, givingcar owners total control over their data