Webinar series looks at vital '14 F&I issues

Radogna: Talks compliance, McCarthy: Auto retail manager, Wells: Toyota Financial VP
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Editor's note: Jim Radogna's last name was misspelled and his title was misstated in an earlier version of this story, which also appeared on Page 30 of the Dec. 9 issue.

What will 2014 bring for finance and insurance managers?

That will be the subject of a Webinar on Jan. 15 at 2 p.m. EST. It will be the first in a series of F&I Webinars offered by Automotive News on the third Wednesday of every month. The Webinars are part of new section of autonews.com, called Access F&I, designed specifically for dealership finance and insurance personnel.

In January, a panel of experts will examine the outlook for factory incentives, leasing, actions by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and more. On the panel:

• Paul McCarthy, executive general manager, Stevenson Automotive Group.

• Jim Radogna, director of compliance, College of Automotive Management.

• Mike Wells, vice president of sales, product and marketing, Toyota Financial Services Group.

This Webinar will give dealers and F&I managers insights into what to prepare for in 2014. For further details, go to autonews.com/accessfi.

On deck after January are Webinars that address practical how-tos of F&I sales, as well as questions of how best to coordinate the sales and F&I departments.

On Feb. 19, Tony Dupaquier, director of training at American Financial & Automotive Services Inc., will tell attendees how to respond when a customer, after being introduced to an extended service contract, GAP or other F&I product, asks perhaps the most common question posed in the F&I office: "Doesn't my car insurance already cover that?"

He will discuss not only the differences in coverage between standard car insurance and F&I products but also the merits of relying on F&I products' coverage rather than insurance. This Webinar is designed to benefit every front-line F&I manager.

On March 19, Andrea Baker, co-general manager at First Texas Honda in Austin, Texas, will tackle the sales/F&I handoff debate: Should sales staffers turn customers over to the F&I office, or should one employee work with customers through the entire sales and F&I process?

Her dealership does it both ways: Experienced staffers stay with a customer from the sales floor through the F&I process, while sales employees with less experience turn their customers over to highly trained F&I managers.

She will explain what was necessary to make her dealership's hybrid approach work and what hurdles had to be overcome. She also will offer, from her unusual vantage point, thoughts on the pros and cons of the two approaches. This Webinar will provide dealers and F&I managers who are contemplating how best to organize their operations valuable strategic insights.

In addition to the monthly Webinars, Access F&I offers unlimited access to F&I articles posted at autonews.com/accessfi, the weekly F&I Report e-mail newsletter and digital delivery of Automotive News' quarterly F&I special sections. Access F&I is included with a print or digital subscription to Automotive News.

But it's also available alone at a subscription price of $69 a year. To sign up, go to autonews.com/accessfisubscribe.

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