If dealers want the service department to support finance and insurance efforts, they should treat service advisers as partners to both the F&I and sales teams. Otherwise, each of the departments likely will be on guard, worried that others' success will negatively impact them.
"In our store, we make a strong attempt to make sure that doesn't happen," said John Barr, general manager of Findlay Toyota in Henderson, Nev.
The key for Findlay Toyota is to protect money on the pack — or the portion of the profit on the sale that the dealership allocates to itself before setting a salesperson's commission. Say there's a $2,000 profit on a vehicle. After a $500 pack, the salesperson will be paid $1,500 in commission, and at Findlay Toyota, that commission is funneled to sales and service.
That incentive motivates salespeople to work harder, resulting in increased volume for both sales and service. As a result, the opportunities to sell service contracts and other F&I products also grows.