RV PRO

November '18

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116 • RV PRO • November 2018 rv-pro.com B U S I N E S S Avoiding the Tech Trap Technology can serve us well – or hold us hostage. The trick is making it work for you. I t's always better to look to the basics and adopt technology only as far as it actually enhances the accomplishment of the matter at-hand. The irony of the statement above coming from me will not be lost on those who know me well. I'm an admitted tech junkie. A recovering first adopter. So, why would I take a position that too much focus on technology can be bad? Remember that old saying, "All that glitters isn't gold"? It's true with technology. And as fast as technology is changing today, it can be time-consuming and expensive to play deeply in that arena. It's always better to look to the basics and adopt technology only as far as it actually enhances the accomplishment of the matter at-hand. Technological Advances in Production With the passage of time, materials used in the assembly of RVs have gotten better, lighter and more functional. Meanwhile, warranty claims are now processed online – a notable change from the recent past, when submitting paper claims was the norm. At the same time, it's now possible to check parts availability with all suppliers and distrib- utors. Some manufacturers have the capability to check part availability. However, the warranty processing has devolved over the past two or three years into an exercise in frustration for both the manufac- turers and the dealers. At the core, I understand that situation as a lapse in trust on the part of both parties. Who pays? The customer does. Technology has provided many improvements for dealership operations, especially in areas such computerized dealership management systems. Still, it's always better to look to the basics and adopt technology only as far as it actually enhances the accomplishment of the matter at-hand. By Chuck Marzahn Chuck Marzahn is a partner with Marzahn & King Consulting, a well- known consulting and training firm specializing in the RV industry based in Virginia Beach, Va. He can be reached for comment and questions at Chuck@Marzahn AndKing.com.

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