Automotive Industry and Markets


Selective sales are the preferred business model in the automotive industry

Challenges to digitization

Previous and current providers of online motor services supplement the websites of their customers in the service sector with similarly dynamic content to those that have long existed for new and used car sales. Workshops and motor businesses often have their own websites with many of them also providing details of their services. These providers expect that more and more customers will look at workshop business portals for information about their services. Potential online customers should be able to obtain information on a 24/7 basis on service portals about all the repair offerings that the motor business advertises on its homepage in addition to its billing rates. The Internet has become much more important for workshop customers – but more as an information platform than as a transaction medium.

The DAT report 2015 states that workshop customers on average are very satisfied, awarding grades of 2 or better. This continues a trend from previous years, which the DAT has identified through its customer surveys.

The preparation of the service business for looking after cars with electric motors has already started. In fact, hybrid vehicles can already been serviced and repaired. Brand workshops have the technical facilities (above all in terms of workplace design) to handle vehicles with electric motors, batteries and, above all, with high-voltage systems. The career of motor vehicle mechatronics specialist, which was created in 2003, actually set the stage in terms of professional qualifications for dealing with alternative drive concepts. The industry and trade are also training existing employees in how to handle high-voltage systems safely.

In addition to price and costs, it should be possible to demand details of the social and ecological aspects at every stage of the production process when the order is awarded as long as they are related to the item being ordered. Since no direct product and service reference is required, the existing principle of product and service referentiality will be removed. The VDA regards the implementation of general political objectives by procurement law very critically. This concept is contrary to the intrinsic main objective of procurement law – efficient, low-cost procurement and fair competition between bidders. Global delivery flows and supply chains are also not considered by this. The VDA will campaign for the commercially sensible delimitation of the definition and the range of strategic aspects.

Digitization of the procurement process

The VDA welcomes efforts to digitize the procurement process. However, the point must not be overlooked that the prompt creation of the necessary framework parameters for complete digital procurement has been a failure to date. This means that there are now serious incompatibilities between digital application systems. In particular, there is no agreement in terms of data and transfer formats or on software and hardware systems. This situation is particularly unsustainable for small and medium-sized enterprises. The VDA will commit to undertaking a standardization offensive. Customers, solution providers and bidders must work on joint standards under the “XProcurement” project.

Dr. Ralf Scheibach
Dr. Ralf Scheibach Head of Department Law and Financial Services

Tel: +49 30 897842-260 Fax: +49 30 897842-600
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