Over the past few months I have been privileged to gain insight into areas of the automotive industry I previously had little exposure to – namely the remarketing industry, the Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) and corporate social responsibility to name but a few.
What this exposure has given me is a fascinating insight into how the automotive industry, by default or design (many would suggest the former), all pieces together. What has also become increasingly clear is how market movements in one area, and in some capacity, will inevitable impact upon another segment. Often accused of operating in silos, make no mistake the automotive industry is one ‘joined-up’ entity.
Take WLTP – the Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure – as an example. Introduced in August 2018, the new emissions testing protocol caused a stir across the industry as vehicle manufacturers had to make changes to the way they did things. The fact that some dragged their heels in implementing these necessary regulatory changes to testing protocols, ultimately resulted in a backlog of vehicles needing testing and categorised prior to the new September 2018 registrations.
The result was knock-on implications across the entire automotive supply chain as availability of vehicles became scarce; new vehicle registrations dropped; the vehicle leasing industry extended contracts; and demand in the remarketing sector increased across all categories.
Further, with a lack of new vehicles available, and major dealers turning their attentions to used stock, competition in this area increased, meaning prices increased. With this, the service, maintenance and repair sectors have also impacted as, across the board, these older vehicles likely require more involved preparation.
In the fleet sector, even corporate responsibilities have been impacted as changes to company fleet vehicle categorisations in relation to emissions levels and BIK were revised.
It is just one example, a significant one at that, which shows how an industry can be impacted by a single event – highlighting the knock-on implications and, ultimately, opportunities that can stem from it.
Now the question is, would I have been aware of this had I not been privy to the broad insight I have across the industry? Doubtful. Quite simply, you don’t know what you don’t know.
The real consideration then is, knowing we don't know everything, what's the best way to learn? The answer is oddly obvious: look outside. Do something, read something, watch something or speak to someone that has nothing to do with your specific (or historical) line of work. Take in the bigger picture. There are likely many opportunities, aligned to your business, that exist just around the corner.
Most of us stay engrossed in our industry to help us be better at what we do which works but it doesn’t allow us to innovate and solve problems or think in new ways. To truly think differently, we need to look outside our own industries.
That’s where Nobull comes in – we’re a team of talented individuals with a host of industry and sector experiences which come together to enable you to ‘step outside’. And just like you, we are keen to learn, so please do not hesitate to get in touch and see how we might be able to help each other innovate and problem solve for the future.