For our TSS dealers, we are excited to summarise all the key information from the NADA conference held in Las Vegas February 1st – 4th 2024. The NADA conference is the premier event for industry professionals, featuring keynote speakers, workshops, networking opportunities, and the latest technological advancements in the automotive industry. This year there was a focus on innovation and growth, providing TSS with valuable insights and strategies to stay up to date with technology, adapting to changes in buyers behaviour, market conditions and meeting the evolving needs of the dealer network. We also collaborated with other dealers and industry leaders to exchange ideas and best practices, ultimately driving our knowledge forward. Read below to find out our updates and highlights from this exciting event!

Staff Development

  • Leaders who prioritise learning and development attract and retain top talent – That’s because employees want to grow and advance in their careers, It’s a win-win situation for both the employer and the employee.
  • There is a direct correlation between staff retention and customer retention – That makes sense – happy staff lead to happy customers after all. It just goes to show how important employee satisfaction is for overall business success.
  • Dealers are finding it increasingly difficult to find and retain the right staff – This challenge is magnified by high turnover rates and a competitive job market.
  • There is a greater focus on professional development opportunities for staff – Many dealerships are recognising the importance of investing in their employees growth and development.
  • Dealers are looking for ways to ensure they find the right people and provide opportunities for growth within their business – Offering professional development opportunities can lead to higher job satisfaction and retention rates among staff


To prioritise Staff/Customer retention, it is essential that the Dealership’s values and culture accurately reflect the desired perception of the business both internally and externally. Corporate core values are inline to the roots of a tree, providing stability and cohesion. Your values and culture are more than mere decorations on a wall, they embody the essence and identity of a dealership. These values are what sets you apart in the market.

  • It was also mentioned in a workshop that management conversations with staff should be in line with values, culture and how they talk about customers that are difficult to deal with.
  • Credibility is diminished if we talk about customers negatively to our staff but then expect our staff to provide excellent customer service.

Employees may leave Dealerships due to:

  • Toxic work environment
  • Burnout
  • Compensation
  • Unclear career paths
  • Lack of alignment

Consider the following ideas to shape your dealership’s culture:

  • Promote a positive work environment
  • Prioritise work-life balance
  • Offer competitive compensation and benefits
  • Provide clear paths for career advancement
  • Ensure alignment with company goals and values

Market Shift:

The global new vehicle market is seeing significant changes in the wake of the COVID pandemic. As demand softens due to factors like cost of living and interest rates, dealers are finding themselves with increased stock levels. This surplus has affected vehicle gross as manufacturers focus on meeting targets and incentivising dealers. Sales teams, many of whom started during the pandemic, are realising the importance of adapting their strategies from order-taking to proactive selling.

Used Cars:

The market for used vehicles is also experiencing a shift, with prices trending downwards and stock turnover becoming a top priority. Dealers are focusing on efficient inventory management to avoid holding onto overpriced cars for too long. There has been an increase in direct used car purchases, from 8% to 13.5%, as more customers opt to sell privately. Training for sales personnel and careful attention to KPI’s related to stock, pricing, marketing, and reconditioning costs are crucial in this changing landscape. Pre-pandemic, the average sale price for used cars was $21,000, rising to $31,000 during COVID but now aiming for $25,000 as values decline.

Marketing, AI, and CRM:

These are areas where the US market is leading, especially in dealerships. This is due to the flexibility of DMS solutions that allow for better integration and data sharing from 3rd party suppliers, resulting in more targeted customer communication through OMNI Channel Marketing. As the world continues to embrace AI, it is crucial for dealerships to adopt this technology and understand the capabilities of Conversational AI and Machine learning AI. While people still prefer human interaction, AI tools can be used for initial enquiries, follow-ups, and monitoring conversations. Before implementing AI, dealerships should consider if it can reduce risks and costs, create new revenue streams, and improve staff and guest experiences. Additionally, it is important for staff to embrace the implementation for it to be successful.

We’ve found there are a lot of myths around AI, thinking you could plug it in and it solves your problem. TSS has adopted AI into the SteamSpeak platform to transcribe and summarise calls. Originally, we also thought AI would be able to assess and benchmark calls. What we found was even with our specialist lead developer consistently tweaking AI’s understanding of our needs the best quality success rate we could achieve was in the low 90% range.

Again restating there are some jobs that takes a human to deliver quality consistent results around your needs.

Key Takeaways from the NADA 2024 Show:

  • Staff development is crucial for employee and customer retention
  • Marketing, AI, and CRM are areas where the US market is leading
  • Values and culture are essential for shaping dealership success
  • Market shifts due to COVID are affecting new and used vehicle sales
  • AI implementation should be carefully considered for success and results may vary
  • Staff embracing AI is crucial for successful implementation and outcome
  • Employees want to grow and advance in their careers
  • Investing in employee growth is a win-win for both the employer and employee
  • Staff retention is directly correlated with customer retention
  • Dealerships are recognising the importance of investing in employee growth and development
  • Dealers are looking for ways to find the right people and provide opportunities for growth within their business

Thank you, TSS Team

NADA 2024 Conference Highlights Key Takeaways for Automotive Industry in a Shifting Market