By Emmariah Holcomb
There are several ways auto glass businesses can stand out and take their companies to the next level, and one common option is making upgrades to software. If you or your company is contemplating taking the next step then keep reading to learn about several suppliers who have made enhancements, upgrades and additions that may work for your business.
Point of Sale
Diane Hughes, sales and marketing representative for Digital Business Controls (DBC), located in Sandy, Utah, says the company has made payments more streamlined for its customers. DBC was acquired by Mainstreet Computers LLC (Mainstreet) and is a division of Mainstreet, according to Hughes.
“We do have integrated credit card processing with IntelliPay, and through this [payment option] our customers are able to do credit card processing directly through our software and then directly through the mobile pro tech app,” she says.
IntelliPay has an intelligent cloud-based payment platform and alternative payment models. The company also offers a payment processing solution for industries wanting to accept credit/debit card and ACH/ECheck transactions in person, over the phone, online, mobile or through its automated recurring payment module. She notes that this has been available to DBC customers over the past year, and that the company has been continually adding features. The recurring payment model allows users to accept payments 24/7 through its online portal, according to Hughes. “They have the option of having a One Link, where they’re able to send that to customers where they can direct them to pay online,” says Hughes. The One Link email payment feature allows users to send a secure payment link via email directly to their customers along with an invoice.
She also mentions that DBC has focused on making the payment process easier for their clients by utilizing IntelliPay.
“Everything is very streamlined. It’s a sister company of ours, and it’s pretty easy to get started with IntelliPay,” she adds. “It’s a great additional feature to have with the software that simplifies things for our customers.”
IBS Software (IBS) offers an Internet-based Point of Sale (POS) software for the automotive and flat glass industries, according to Kyle Kryger, president of the Kansas City—based company. “Our Glass-check feature allows glass shop users to quickly search pricing and availability from suppliers with one button click during the quote process,” says Kryger.
The company’s POS software separates each supplier in different tabs, which Kryger says allows users to navigate quickly to check things like pricing and availability. “If the glass shop is using a cost plus pricing formula, it will capture their cost from the part chosen from the supplier and update the quote with the correct pricing information,” explains Kryger.
He also notes that the supplier portion is stored with the glass order and can be ordered directly within Elmo Anywhere and it also links the supplier order to the glass shop order. This process helps create a more streamlined approach for each user, as well as creating a better overall experience for a customer with a glass need, Kryger adds.
IBS is currently integrated with Kryger Glass, Mygrant Glass, PGW
and Pilkington, and Kryger says there will be additional supplier integrations the industry should look out for soon.
Mark Bennet, Mitchell International auto physical damage and glass solutions product manager, says the company has a new point of sales system for glass repair and replacement facilities. Mitchell Cloud Glass is web based and stores all transactions in the cloud for instant access at the shop or on the go.
“The system has mapped OEM repair procedures including available calibration and even interior RNI procedures directly to the NAGS numbers,” explains Bennet. “EDI communications have been established with LYNX and Safelite. We also have integrations with QuickBooks online and update promise and first data with credit card processing.”
Omega EDI recently released and granted public access to its new auto glass repair and replacement point-of-sale and shop management software. According to Aric Haarala, Glass Mechanix Solutions sales and business development vice president, the new software provides the same user-friendly feel. “The user interface is convenient for an owner/operator while simultaneously providing the breadth of functionality to incorporate the needs of enterprise level organizations,” says Haarala. “Omega is a truly cloud based platform that allows customers the ability to access all features of the program from virtually any smart phone, tablet, or computer. Users can generate live quotes, create work orders, communicate with customers, and simply and easily invoice their customers and accounts from their shop, their home or even on their phone while they are out in the field.”
Some of the features include: full NAGS integration, which allows live and remote access to NAGS prices and labor hours; live vendor integrations, which allows for real time and simultaneous quoting and purchasing; and advanced reporting, which allows a full suite of reports that help you track revenue and productivity.
Greg Tornga, owner, Reliable Glass in Phoenix, Ariz., which offers auto glass and residential services, says he currently uses one supplier of point-of-sale systems for auto glass and another for residential.
“The software supplier I use for auto is purely auto, though they are trying to put together a residential solution,” says Tornga. “I would love to have the best of both worlds in one program.”
While some companies focus on one or two points to highlight during a software upgrade, others, like GTS Services (GTS), powered by Solera, introduces several items at once. Eddie Medina, new account sales representative for GTS, located in Portland, Ore., says the company has implemented a paperless workflow from first contact to technician completion and emailed receipt, license plate decoders that are able to get the vehicle identification number from a license plate and a full EDI Suite with rejection handling.
Medina also says that a new glass quoter interface for its customer websites and an open API for glass quotes will be available from the company soon. “These feature additions and quality of life enhancements that have been in development over the past three years as we work to improve our user’s experience using GlasPacLX,” says Medina. He also notes that the company’s mobile application, LX Mobile, received a “full facelift” toward the end of
According to Medina, GTS noticed that its customers needed more automation and connectivity in the industry, which is why the company is revamping its Glass Quoter add-on. “We want to continually work towards creating better experiences for our customers while adding additional functionality to help cope with an ever-changing business landscape,” says Medina.
Companies aligning can also have a positive impact on the software side of the industry, and Hughes can attest to this, as Mainstreet has a new partnership with Glass.com®. “Glass.com is a job generating source for our customers so that they can actually have jobs just patched directly into their software from Glass.com,” says Hughes.
Glass.com gets auto glass jobs nationwide and relies on its affiliates, or glass shops, that sign up with them to fulfill the jobs. According to Hughes, once Glass.com has an affiliate in the area, it can dispatch them directly through the company’s software. The entire process takes less than a minute.
“We just started promoting that with our customers and we’re in the middle of email campaigning to let our customers know that this option is available to them,” says Hughes. “We’ve gotten positive feedback from our partnership and most of our customers who understand what the company offers feel like it’s a no brainer partnership to generate more business for themselves.”
That isn’t the only partnership for Mainstreet, as Hughes says working with other companies just helps its customers become more successful.
“We have a partnership with BidClips—it’s a communications tool and what we’ve done is integrate that so our customers can begin the process with BidClips and then BidClips can dispatch those jobs into Mainstreet,” explains Hughes.
“So instead of recreating the wheel and putting that into our software, we were able to partner with someone who already has that created, so to speak, so we can add that to our software,” she adds.
Emmariah Holcomb is the assistant editor of AGRR magazine.
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