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Auto Repair Shop Management Help? Start Here

Do you have an automotive management or business related issue that you need help with? If you don't know what forum to post in, don't worry, just start by posting a new topic in this forum and we'll move in the appropriate forum category.

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  1. Specific Management Forums   (3,065 visits to this link)

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    • Have a great Independence Day everyone!
    • We purchased one for each of our two locations. The biggest struggle is finding the right pricing and also explaining to the customer why the price is so much higher. We have probably used them 10x combined over the course of 12 months so we are a long way away from covering the investment. The process is much, much longer (1 hour minimum to run through all the steps on the machine), but it's still a valuable service as we are able to work on other vehicles while the machine does its thing. 
    • We bought a dual machine a few months back. We have been seeing older cars (2013 Dodge Dart!) with the 1234. Because fo the cost of the refrigerant, we began using co2 to check for leaks. It has worked well. My advice? If you can get a deal on one, buy it. You will need it very soon if not already
    • Sounds a lot like our shop. We have weekly management meetings and that item seems to jump on the agenda when it gets crazy busy like it is now. What eased the pain a bit for us is building a fleet of loaner cars so that if you have to keep a car overnight, the client isn't without a vehicle. We have 4 techs and try to limit car count to 16 per day. While that helps, we always have "sleepovers" (cars that don't get finished and sleepover until the next day). Yesterday we had 8 sleepovers to add to our 16 that were coming in today. I feel your pain. Very often that 45 minute oil service turns into a 6 hour $1,500 repair order and we didn't have the 45 minutes to do the oil service!! I like Newport5's suggestion of looking at deferred work when someone makes an appointment. I am going to have our front counter staff start to try to presell that def work so we have a better handle on the hours sold. I hate to push people out a week. 
    • Thanks for all your feedback. I think we're all saying & doing virtually the same things, finding the sweet spot for our specific shops. I was hoping there was a magic recipe that maybe I was missing, but I guess not. Seems we're all in the same boat when it comes to trying to schedule an orderly day but I guess the right combination of all those things works for all of us.
    • We have expanded our service range to Auto Electrical services and Air con repairs and ECU repairs and Stage1 and 2 performance upgrades which is currently the big thing here in SA. We secured Denso accreditation and do repairers for the OEM's that use Denso systems under warranty in our city.  I have 2 online stores not related to the motor industry focusing on quality consumer goods not made in China. we dont know what the future holds for the motor trade and white South Africans n SA. Hence the 2 online shops.
    • Good morning  Looking forward to retirement at 55 since i was 25, i have discovered that one can only travel so much and see so many things before i get bored.  I am at that point in my life were retirement seems like a good option, my son is working in the business and will take over the business and will provide me with a passive income.  After years of searching i got all the right people in the right positions and even with my son not there, its business like usual. Covid-19 did its damage but we don't cry over spilt milk, we are fortunate to have survived through the difficult time. Our biggest concern at this time is that one of the employees (or ourselfs) get Covid -19, and still i cant seem to pul the trigger on retirement.  Retirement on its own seems to comes with its own challenges for a busy body like me.. I dont think i will retire just yet.
    • I have three bays and three techs. For years we have scheduled using a desk blotter that has vertical columns for each day of the week. I write down the customers name and brief description or acronyms of the work needed such as OFL, ROTI for oil/filter/lube and rotate tires. If the job requires known parts to be ordered in before arrival then I write up the job using my shop management system, order the parts, print a work order, record the customer’s name on the blotter in the appropriate column and write “TIR” indicated a worker order or “ticket” is started already and in the rack. Other than that it is all gut feeling, experience and the ability to say “No” when your instinct tells you that taking on a prospective job that was not scheduled is a “bridge too far” based on current work load. Good communication with the customer concerning delays is a must. When the crap hits the fan and you know the vehicle won’t be finished call the owner right away and keep them informed. Waiting until the end of the day never helps that type of situation. Since Covid I have been sending canned text reminders for scheduled work the day before or the morning of using my shop management program which has helped to eliminate “no shows”. The canned reminder also contains instructions for a safe, minimal exposure drop off during Covid so it serves two purposes.


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