Compli's software isn't intended to replace a dealership's attorney but to complement what the attorney does, says Compli CFO Lon Leneve. In July, Compli partnered with PreventionPoint, a subsidiary of Atlanta law firm Fisher & Phillips. The firm concentrates on labor and employment matters.
Dealers pay an annual subscription fee of about $7,000 per dealership location to use Compli's software.
Compli's most direct competitor is HotlinkHR Inc., a subsidiary of the employment law defense firm Fine, Boggs, Cope & Perkins, of Half Moon Bay, Calif. HotlinkHR automates procedures including drug and background reporting, Web-based employee handbooks and electronically tracked employee training.
There are also scores of companies that call on dealers offering them consulting and training for a particular law or regulation, such as sexual harassment or the federal Do Not Call list. These are typically known as point solutions because of their narrow focus.
"For the most part, those are consultant-type people, not technology products, although they will sometimes have a Web site or a tracking system for training or something like that," Bryan says.
But Compli's chief competitor, Bryan says, is the status quo.
"It's often a challenge," Bryan says. "Dealers will say, 'Yes, I understand it. Yes, I know I could get in a lot of trouble. Yes, I know my insurance rates are rising and people are telling me that I've got to get this stuff under control. But you know what? I got Sally in the back room, and she seems to be able to handle it. Yes, she's being crushed by paperwork, but until she screams at me, I'm not going to do anything.' "
Meanwhile, ADP and Reynolds, the two largest vendors of dealership management systems, also have been trying to provide compliance tools.
ADP three years ago looked at how it could help dealers become compliant throughout their operations, says Kevin Henahan, ADP's senior vice president of marketing.
"It's a very important issue for the dealers," Henahan says. "We've listened to them, and we've systematically been providing them with the tools, the data and the services available to help them become compliant. I think everyone would say that we're on the right track."
Through its dealership management system and support services, ADP helps dealers with compliance by encrypting passwords and Social Security numbers, refreshing customer contact information and checking it against Do Not Call lists. The system can determine during credit checks whether a customer appears on any terrorist or terrorist organization lists.
Reynolds provides similar help and services, and its customers are looking to Reynolds to "build a lot of that into the core system," says Scott Collins, vice president of marketing at Reynolds.
Dealers are most concerned, Collins says, about properly complying with the Safeguards Rule, checking customers against the Office of Foreign Assets Control watch list, and Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations in the service and parts operations.
You may e-mail Ralph Kisiel at [email protected]