Does your dealership have a key management policy in place? If not, you could be hurting your own profits and wasting your time. Having a dealership key tracking system can help prevent lost keys, as well as the lost time and sales that accompany them. For the best results, however, you also need a solid dealership key management policy detailing who will have access to the keys as well as how to handle reporting and security protocols. Here at Security Key Automotive, we want your key management to be the best it can be, so we have some tips for creating a strong policy that will help keep your keys and your inventory safe.

The first step for creating any security protocol is to assess your risk. For example, if asked right now, would you know with certainty exactly how many inventory keys you have at your dealership and at any time keys are out which personnel is in control of those keys? If the answer is no or not exactly, it’s time to consider a dealership key tracking system and a dealership key management policy.

Obviously, the next step is to consider which automotive key tracking system is best for you. After all, there is little point in having a dealership key management policy if you don’t have the tools necessary to implement it correctly. Security Key Automotive offers a variety key tracking systems for car dealerships ranging from the Morse Watchman KeyBank Touch, with it’s state of the art software, touchscreen and additional features, to the mechanical Cobra Automotive Key Management System. All the systems require employees to use an assigned code to sign out keys backed by accurate software reporting which ensures you always know who has the keys and each key’s history. Regardless of whether your lot is large or small, and how tech savvy your team is, we have a dealership key tracking system that’s right for you. Best of all, whatever system you choose, you can have the security of knowing it’s backed by our two-year warranty. We also make using an automotive key management system affordable and easy with our monthly payment program.

Once you’ve chosen a key tracking system, it’s time to move on to creating the dealership key management policy itself. This should be a written policy, and should include who is allowed to access keys, how they are to be handled, and when they must be returned. Choose who will have primary control of the new automotive key tracking system as well as which personnel will be given access and assigned a user code. Also, it’s vital to clarify that all employees must return any keys in their possession to the key bank upon termination, and whether all keys must be returned to the automotive key tracking system box at the end of each day. It’s also important to consider how sharing keys with another employee must be handled. For example, if one sales person removes a key from the key bank system to show the vehicle and then gives it to a second rep to show his/her customer, how should the exchange be recorded? Ideally, the key should always be returned to the key box between exchanges so that your management team always has a record of who has a key. To ensure this always happens, your dealership key management policy should require each key be returned between showings by different reps and then checked out anew. If you decide to make exceptions to this rule– something we don’t advise– be certain any exceptions clearly stated in the key management policy and reporting measures are taken to ensure management knows the keys have changed hands.

To verify that employees with access to the key system both read and understand the dealership key management policy, it is recommended that you require each one to sign a copy. Copies should then be filed, regardless of whether this is done electronically or physically. This will ensure that anyone with access to keys is aware of the policy, and provide the documentation necessary.

By having a strong dealership key management policy, as well as having a reliable automotive key tracking system, you can ensure that all of your inventory keys remain safe and are always accounted for at any time. Save your dealership time and money by never losing another sale due to a missing key and never paying for key replacements again. If you have any questions about creating your dealership key management policy or purchasing a key bank, please contact a specialist with Security Key Automotive at 800-887-0258. With decades of experience in the automotive industry, we’re ready to offer expert advice and help you find the dealership key tracking system that best fits your needs. We look forward to serving you!