SAN FRANCISCO — Auto is behind the rest of the consumer retail industry when it comes to innovation, Alex Maritczak, EY’s global auto finance leader, said during a panel discussion at AFSA’s Vehicle Finance Conference.
Executives from Capital One, CarMax Auto Finance, and Ford Motor Credit Co. weighed in on how auto finance companies can overcome that hurdle to create an innovation culture. “It starts with a mindset,” said Shannon Mokhiber, Ford Credit’s vice president of U.S. brand and product marketing. “You always want to do more, and you’re never satisfied by the status quo.”
Part of that mindset, Mokhiber added, is having a safe environment where employees feel that they can take smart risks, fail, and then be supported.
Capital One Senior Vice President of Loan Servicing Steve Braskamp encourages innovation by putting in the time to learn about new technologies himself to just “keep pace,” which he admitted can be overwhelming at times.
The solution, Braskamp said, can be to bring in outside experts to help. “You don’t know what you don’t know and, therefore, you have to get the outside perspective,” whether that be software engineers or designers, he added. At CarMax Auto Finance, creating an innovation culture starts at the top.
“If you’re really going to innovate, it’s got to be a core value,” said Chief Operating Officer Mike Farris. From there, it needs to become the responsibility of each employee to constantly be thinking about ways to add value to the customer, he added.
For more content like this, check out our upcoming event Auto Finance Accelerate, May 13-16 at the Omni San Diego. Visit www.AutoFinanceAccelerate.com to register.