A Canadian software company is getting $1.5 million from the federal government to develop a data hub for dealerships and use artificial intelligence to increase efficiency and revenue at stores across the country.
Calgary’s Quorum Information Technologies Inc. is getting the interest-free repayable loan from the Atlantic Innovation Fund, a federal program designed to help companies develop and commercialize new or improved products or services.
Using its XSellerator tool as a foundation, Quorum will develop a data hub that integrates information about the customer gleaned from the dealership’s data management system (DMS), the automaker, and other third-party partners.
Xsellerator is a dealership- and customer-management software product that automates, integrates and streamlines every process under a dealership’s roof, from parts orders to warranty claims and more.
Quorum’s Xsellerator works with dealerships from Ford, Chrysler, General Motors and others.
Over a two-year span, Quorum will use the federal funding to build the architecture required to mine the existing DMS information, augment it with information from automakers and use existing artificial intelligence to build features that give dealership staff easily actionable sales, service and parts leads.
Dan Ichelson, XSellerator’s vice-president of operations said the data hub project “will focus on revenue generation.”
Artificial intelligence will be used to generate customer-specific leads that will be presented to dealership staff within the XSellerator DMS.
Artificial intelligence technology will analyze a technician’s short hand and notes on file and realize an opportunity for an upsell. For example, a technician performing one task might also write “saw cool tank fll” when he really means “noticed coolant overflow was full.” That’s an opportunity for a dealership to offer a coupon for or discount on a coolant flush-and-fill.
Or, perhaps a tech notices brake wear while rotating tires, presenting another opportunity for an upsell, Ichelson said.
“In many cases, dealership staff will be able to automatically allow the system to action the leads.”
Although Quorum’s head office is in Calgary, the company’s largest office for its XSellerator data management division, which includes the DMS software development team and call centre, is located in St. John’s, N.L. That’s why the funding is coming from the Atlantic Innovation Fund.