Quantcast
Jump to content


Hiring your first person ( One man shop)


Recommended Posts

When do you know it's time to hire someone? Who do you hire ? Just a tech to do light work like or a mechanic to do the more profitable jobs? Is it best to 1099 them or what? I looked at my numbers for the month of December 2014 and it was on the 10th of the month this year. My numbers so far this month has doubled for the whole month from last year. I have to Joe for having this site to help use network and help each other. The things I've learned so far is what is making a difference at my shop right now and it's just the beginning for me!! Thanks guys!!

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great Tire Deal

If you are going to take the advice of industry coaches, you should start looking into hiring a quality full time tech (if you can afford it) and take yourself out of that position so you can work on the business. This may cause you to take the role of the front end person for a while but thats where you'll be able to make the most difference to the bottomline and grow the business. Eventually you can hire more techs and a service advisor and not have to write service anymore.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You will know when you need a guy. If you have more work than you can handle in 8-10 hours, it's time. Your new tech will quickly lighten your load and you will have a lot of time to build your business. I hired my first guy when my sales exceeded 30k/mo gross. Your needs will vary...

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You will know when you need a guy. If you have more work than you can handle in 8-10 hours, it's time. Your new tech will quickly lighten your load and you will have a lot of time to build your business. I hired my first guy when my sales exceeded 30k/mo gross. Your needs will vary...

30k/mo as a single man shop is phenomenal! Kudos to you!

 

 

For me it wasn't as simple. Between answering the phone, selling jobs, and turning wrenches, I came to realize that I needed help to turn out an acceptable service.

 

Being the type of man that I am, I sat down and made a list of things I needed to do, and what were my expectations to give my customer an excellent service.

 

I made a revenue projection and at a worst case scenario, I saw that I could hire someone even if I had to do all the work. I gave myself three months to try it out.

 

I would like to tell you that the first guy I hire was a complete success, but it was not. The numbers held true, and he did make me money, but there came a lot of aggravation for not knowing how to have done a proper screening.

 

Hiring is more than just making the numbers work.

 

I now check references, I ask about the attitude and willingness to learn, I rather take someone with less experience and teach them my process if they have the right attitude and willingness to learn.

 

I also keep in mind their personal relationship with their significant other in their lives, if their spouse is difficult, that will find a way to pollute into their work environment.

 

my 0.02¢

Edited by HarrytheCarGeek
  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you are going to take the advice of industry coaches, you should start looking into hiring a quality full time tech (if you can afford it) and take yourself out of that position so you can work on the business. This may cause you to take the role of the front end person for a while but thats where you'll be able to make the most difference to the bottomline and grow the business. Eventually you can hire more techs and a service advisor and not have to write service anymore.

Some one invested in the future of the shop needs to quality control check each vehicle before it is released to the customer. A perfect repair can be ruined by grease on the steering wheel or oil cap left off, bad repair,etc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Be careful who you hire, I thought I vetted my last hire well. I knew he was limited in his skill set but said he could do brake lines no problem. He did a whole Chevy truck yesterday, and I got to looking at it and he had the brake line ran through the clutch fan. I was speechless, I immediately sent him home and let him go this morning. This was the 2nd time I had to redo the entire brake line job I had him to do, the first one I chalked up to a learning experience.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I worked alone yesterday, I can't go back to that way of life. I had forgotten how hard it is to get things done being service counter man and technician.

I went through this last week and it was not fun at all. I totally agree that I CAN'T go back to that. Not only do I suffer, but so does the work and the customer.

 

 

As for when to hire, I agree that you should hire when you can't keep up with the work in an 8 hour day fairly consistently.

 

As for who to hire first, I made the mistake of hiring the lesser experienced techs because I was terrified of the expense of a top level tech. I paid dearly for that mistake. From my experience as the business grows you will find yourself at the counter more and more, and keep in mind that is a good thing! You will need that guy that doesn't need much instruction when this happens. I will also tell you that I waited way too long to do it.

As for how to pay, you will most likely be required to pay them W-2 by law. Incentive based plans are the way to go in my opinion, especially when starting out (base pay plus bonuses/incentives). The right person will help you grow with this type of plan, but keep in mind it's not always about the $$ to an employee. As for 1099's, their really is no such thing as a 1099 "employee" because 1099's are for independent contractors. It can be done but you must be very careful and know the rules. Consult with an accountant to be sure if you can or can't do it. And on a side note: we do our own payroll in house and it is not that difficult.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 6 months later...

Ryan was your Aro and profit percent at the time you hired your first tech?

My ARO was around $350 at 52% profit. Now we are $675ARO at 62%. On pace for a 1.1M year (5th year in biz) with just 2 employees and myself in the shop. One top tech, myself wrenching and a service writer. Hitting over $100k/mo gross several times this year and averaging $96k. I have had my share of bad employees. Key is to not be held captive and fire them as soon as you know it's not right to keep them. Your better off on your own being efficient and doing it right then doing it wrong and having to repeat it over and over.
  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 months later...

This is a great subject, I just open a 2 Bay Shop and I'm bearly making, great potential due to location I even open a hand car washow in the lot and hire a guy to it , but coming from a Factory own dealership (BMW) to work in general mechanic is a whole diffeent world, I notice I need to hire a mechanic with experience and probably pay him 40% of all labor. That will allow me to run the front. Can't afford base salary yet.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

I got lucky with my first employee. I wasn't even looking to hire anyone as I was doing everything fine. It was a kid and he had experience working for his grandpas shop and wanted a chance to work in the real world. He was willing to do anything for minimum wage! Well.. a year later, he is now one of my 4 employees and one of my best techs! He did 2 back to back head gaskets last week (both Jeeps, surprise surprise). Having another guy pushed my business to the next level. I can never go back to working alone.

 

If it's going to be your first employee and if you guys are working side by side, I would hire someone a little bit inexperienced so that you can teach him how you want things done and don't question your methods. Also they will be really loyal to you and you can start their pay low and raise their pay as their skills grow

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is a great subject, I just open a 2 Bay Shop and I'm bearly making, great potential due to location I even open a hand car washow in the lot and hire a guy to it , but coming from a Factory own dealership (BMW) to work in general mechanic is a whole diffeent world, I notice I need to hire a mechanic with experience and probably pay him 40% of all labor. That will allow me to run the front. Can't afford base salary yet.

You should flip. you work on cars and hire a counter guy. Counter guys are dime a dozen and you can find one for a lot cheaper than a good tech. If you are used to working on BMW's, you can work on other cars. Hondas, Toyotas, chrysler, GM's etc are all easier than BMW's.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Available Subscriptions

  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

         0 comments
      It always amazes me when I hear about a technician who quits one repair shop to go work at another shop for less money. I know you have heard of this too, and you’ve probably asked yourself, “Can this be true? And Why?” The answer rests within the culture of the company. More specifically, the boss, manager, or a toxic work environment literally pushed the technician out the door.
      While money and benefits tend to attract people to a company, it won’t keep them there. When a technician begins to look over the fence for greener grass, that is usually a sign that something is wrong within the workplace. It also means that his or her heart is probably already gone. If the issue is not resolved, no amount of money will keep that technician for the long term. The heart is always the first to leave. The last thing that leaves is the technician’s toolbox.
      Shop owners: Focus more on employee retention than acquisition. This is not to say that you should not be constantly recruiting. You should. What it does means is that once you hire someone, your job isn’t over, that’s when it begins. Get to know your technicians. Build strong relationships. Have frequent one-on-ones. Engage in meaningful conversation. Find what truly motivates your technicians. You may be surprised that while money is a motivator, it’s usually not the prime motivator.
      One last thing; the cost of technician turnover can be financially devastating. It also affects shop morale. Do all you can to create a workplace where technicians feel they are respected, recognized, and know that their work contributes to the overall success of the company. This will lead to improved morale and team spirit. Remember, when you see a technician’s toolbox rolling out of the bay on its way to another shop, the heart was most likely gone long before that.
  • Similar Topics

    • By carmcapriotto
      This week, Jamie Hasty from Southeastern Employer Services Corporation (SESCO) joins Hunt to discuss HR and employment law topics for auto repair shop owners. Jamie provides expert advice on managing overtime, understanding exemptions, and maintaining compliance with labor laws. This conversation is essential for any auto repair business looking to safeguard against legal pitfalls and ensure proper payroll management. It includes:
      Important discussions on managing overtime and understanding exemptions. Practical advice on maintaining compliance with labor laws. Tips for auto repair shop owners to avoid legal issues and manage payroll effectively. https://sescomgt.com/  
      Thanks to our partners, NAPA TRACS and Promotive
       
      Did you know that NAPA TRACS has onsite training plus six days a week support?
      It all starts when a local representative meets with you to learn about your business and how you run it.  After all, it's your shop, so it's your choice.
      Let us prove to you that Tracs is the single best shop management system in the business.  Find NAPA TRACS on the Web at NAPATRACS.com
      It’s time to hire a superstar for your business; what a grind you have in front of you. Great news, you don’t have to go it alone. Introducing Promotive, a full-service staffing solution for your shop. Promotive has over 40 years of recruiting and automotive experience. If you need qualified technicians and service advisors and want to offload the heavy lifting, visit www.gopromotive.com.
      Get in touch with Jamie Hasty: https://sescomgt.com/
      Paar Melis and Associates – Accountants Specializing in Automotive Repair
      Visit us Online: www.paarmelis.com
      Email Hunt: [email protected]
      Get a copy of my Book: Download Here
      Aftermarket Radio Network
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By carmcapriotto
      Matt Fanslow discusses the importance of understanding technicians' value, open communication about compensation, and collaborative problem-solving.
      Show Notes
      Dutch Silverstein - Straight Talk to Technicians [E018]: https://mattfanslow.captivate.fm/episode/018 Dutch Silverstein - Straight Talk to Technicians - Part 2 [E046]: https://mattfanslow.captivate.fm/episode/046 Challenges Faced by Managers and Owners (00:01:30)  Demand for Better Compensation (00:02:43)  Assessing Value and Increasing Compensation (00:04:28)  Honest Conversations and Fear (00:05:54)  Hierarchy and Fairness (00:10:16)  Improving Communication and Grace (00:15:52)  Achieving Collective Success (00:18:12)  Recognizing Flaws in the System (00:19:28)  Taking a Step Back to Move Forward (00:20:58)  Accepting Criticism and Turning It into a Positive (00:22:05)   
      Thanks to our Partner, NAPA Autotech napaautotech.com
       
      Email Matt: [email protected]
      Diagnosing the Aftermarket A - Z YouTube Channel HERE
      Aftermarket Radio Network: https://aftermarketradionetwork.com/
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By Joe Marconi

      Premium Member Content 

      This content is hidden to guests, one of the benefits of a paid membership. Please login or register to view this content.

    • By Joe Marconi

      Premium Member Content 

      This content is hidden to guests, one of the benefits of a paid membership. Please login or register to view this content.

    • Water Proof And Self Adhesive
    • By carmcapriotto
      Thanks to our partners, NAPA TRACS and Promotive
      Did you know that NAPA TRACS has onsite training plus six days a week support?
      It all starts when a local representative meets with you to learn about your business and how you run it.  After all, it's your shop, so it's your choice.
      Let us prove to you that Tracs is the single best shop management system in the business.  Find NAPA TRACS on the Web at NAPATRACS.com
      It’s time to hire a superstar for your business; what a grind you have in front of you. Great news, you don’t have to go it alone. Introducing Promotive, a full-service staffing solution for your shop. Promotive has over 40 years of recruiting and automotive experience. If you need qualified technicians and service advisors and want to offload the heavy lifting, visit www.gopromotive.com.
      Paar Melis and Associates – Accountants Specializing in Automotive Repair
      Visit us Online: www.paarmelis.com
      Email Hunt: [email protected]
      Get a copy of my Book: Download Here
      Aftermarket Radio Network
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio


  • Our Sponsors



×
×
  • Create New...