The inspiration for Automyze


An interview with Co-Founder, Lucy Burnford

Automyze is an innovative platform that allows motorists to manage and maintain all aspects of vehicle ownership and admin in one secure online place for free. It is set to digitise and transform the way we own and maintain our vehicles by making life a whole lot easier. Co-Founder Lucy Burnford reveals the inspiration behind the idea.

What inspired the idea for Automyze?

“I had a first-hand experience buying a second-hand car with a full service history from a seemingly reputable dealer, but I subsequently discovered to my considerable expense, that the service history and maintenance was not totally complete. Unfortunately, there were many essential maintenance requirements that had been overlooked which meant that just three months later I landed a bill in excess of £3,500 for urgent repairs. It was the lack of transparency around what work had been done to the vehicle over its lifetime before I purchased it, which led me to want to develop a tool that captures and securely stored a vehicle’s full maintenance, repair and service records in one place and really question the term “full service history” as we loosely use it.

So what do people mean when they currently refer to a ‘full service history’?

Technically a full service history would be a stamp of every Service, on-schedule to the manufacturer’s exact recommendation, alongside details of what was undertaken at each service including additional maintenance and repair work. However, when we use the term ‘full service history’ it can mean far less (or far more) than that. For some, its having the paper service book with stamps capturing the Services that have taken place at intermittent intervals or ‘as and when’ but no further documentation; for others its every single receipt on anything the vehicle has needed including tyres, a new light bulb through to documenting every detail of a major restoration. So its very loose. This disparity mean the definition is very wide, and it means motorists can be in the dark when it comes to really knowing the state of their own vehicle or particularly one they are considering buying.

So how does Automyze address this challenge?

With so much to remember when it comes to vehicle-related admin, we wanted to take the hassle away from motorists by automating all the admin and importantly storing securely a digital list of all the work that has been done to the vehicle.  In order to do this, we ask all garages that our users book-in at via the AA Garage Guide, to digitally ‘stamp’ the work they have done back to our user’s Automyze account – which results in a definitive digital service record which can’t get lost. In addition to that, we retrieve up to 10 year’s of MOT history including Advisory Notes which can make for very interesting reading given how few of us remember to get the Advisory work done once it becomes due.

We know that owning and running a car is a real hassle for motorists, so by creating Automyze we can remove the hassle, reduce the risk of driving a car without a valid MOT, road tax or insurance and ultimately add real value to the resale price of your car.

How does it work?

All motorists are welcome to sign-up for free and enjoy the benefits of Automyze and can add all the vehicles in their household. We just need you vehicle’s registration number (or number plate) and your email address.

We then automatically import your MOT and tax expiry dates and send you free reminders when they are due. You can also put in other important dates for insurance and breakdown, and we’ll remind you of those too.

We can import up to 10 year’s MOT history and Advisory Notes when you confirm either the V5C (or ‘log book’) reference number, or last MOT certificate number so you can back-fill your digital history.

We also have a network of great UK garages, which motorists can book-in with and who will digitally stamp the work when completed, straight back into your account.

So less paperwork?

Exactly. Obviously keeping paper copies as a back-up are always useful, however with Automyze you can have a digital backup should anything happen to the paper versions.

How much do you think an Automyze account could add to the resale value of a vehicle?

It’s very hard to estimate, however recent research by the ICM suggested 45% of buyers would not purchase a used car without a full service history and furthermore, with an incomplete service history buyers are expecting an average of 19% discount. Put this into context, in July 2014 the average used car price was £7,706, which means buyers are expecting around a £1,464 discount on the sale price if the service history is incomplete. If that’s the value of the current ‘full service history’ we are excited to see what an Automyze account could add to the value.

If you want to explore our new, free Automyze platform, or you just need reminding when your MOT, tax, service, insurance and or breakdown is due, simply click here to register for free.