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How to keep your tech happy?


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I have a 4 bay shop with 2 techs, stay very busy most of the time, I have a tech that has been with me for 20 years, He can pretty mutch fix anything i put in front of him, I pay by the hour 27$, Full medical with 2500$ deductable and 115 a month life ins, I have not given any raises i a few years, He is starting to question what more i can do, I do not want to loose him, but i do not know how i am paying compared to other shops, Anyone have any creative ideas? what are shops offering for benifits, retirement, Thanks David

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I have a 4 bay shop with 2 techs, stay very busy most of the time, I have a tech that has been with me for 20 years, He can pretty mutch fix anything i put in front of him, I pay by the hour 27$, Full medical with 2500$ deductable and 115 a month life ins, I have not given any raises i a few years, He is starting to question what more i can do, I do not want to loose him, but i do not know how i am paying compared to other shops, Anyone have any creative ideas? what are shops offering for benifits, retirement, Thanks David

 

If you value the tech, sit down with him NOW. You are paying him well. Our pay scale for a tech of that caliber is the same. We also offer and contribute to a health plan and life insurance. We do offer a retirement plan, paid vacations, sick days and we also have a bonus plan based on productivity.

 

For my top people, I try to take care of them and include them in major business decisions. For example: if you are thinking about buying a new tire machine, hold a meeting with your key people and get their opinions. Give them the task of doing the research on what the best machine is to buy. You will be surprised how they will respond to this. The egos will be on fires. This keeps them focused on the company and take a personal interest in the success of the shop.

 

If you do not a productivity bonus plan, I would consider it.

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Could i get some ideas on what you base your bonus plan on?

 

It’s a little complicated, but I will do the best I can to explain.

 

When a tech is hired we track the techs labor hours sold and compare those hours against the hours worked. In other words if a tech books 20 hours in a 40 hour work week, that tech is 50% productive. If the tech books 40 hours in the same week, then that equates to 100%.

 

What we do for all new techs for the first 6 weeks is to find what their average potential is and after 6 weeks we will give them a bonus (based on the hourly rate) for every hour they book over their average. The average potential becomes their minimum level of performance expectation.

 

So, let say a new tech averaged 35 hours in a 40 hour week for the first 6 weeks of employment; the 35 hours becomes his goal to beat. Anything above that, he will receive a bonus. If he books 39 hours for a 40 hour week, he get 4 extra paid hours.

 

Now the goal is get that tech to 100% level. Each month we raise the bar and within 6 months the tech has to achieve 100% in order to get any bonus.

We feel that this is fair because it allows the tech to compete against himself and not other techs.

 

With that said, there is a lot that goes into maintaining high productivity levels: wasted time with comebacks, wasted time with waiting for parts, the wrong parts, defective parts, not selling enough labor hours, giving away diagnostic time, slow service advisors not selling the work quick enough, shop layout, tool truck time, cigarette breaks, late back from lunch…..you get the idea. The only way to truly get shop production up is to do a complete shop analysis of where the bottle necks are and track every minute of the tech’s time.

 

I hope this helps.

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It’s a little complicated, but I will do the best I can to explain.

 

When a tech is hired we track the techs labor hours sold and compare those hours against the hours worked. In other words if a tech books 20 hours in a 40 hour work week, that tech is 50% productive. If the tech books 40 hours in the same week, then that equates to 100%.

 

What we do for all new techs for the first 6 weeks is to find what their average potential is and after 6 weeks we will give them a bonus (based on the hourly rate) for every hour they book over their average. The average potential becomes their minimum level of performance expectation.

 

So, let say a new tech averaged 35 hours in a 40 hour week for the first 6 weeks of employment; the 35 hours becomes his goal to beat. Anything above that, he will receive a bonus. If he books 39 hours for a 40 hour week, he get 4 extra paid hours.

 

Now the goal is get that tech to 100% level. Each month we raise the bar and within 6 months the tech has to achieve 100% in order to get any bonus.

We feel that this is fair because it allows the tech to compete against himself and not other techs.

 

With that said, there is a lot that goes into maintaining high productivity levels: wasted time with comebacks, wasted time with waiting for parts, the wrong parts, defective parts, not selling enough labor hours, giving away diagnostic time, slow service advisors not selling the work quick enough, shop layout, tool truck time, cigarette breaks, late back from lunch…..you get the idea. The only way to truly get shop production up is to do a complete shop analysis of where the bottle necks are and track every minute of the tech’s time.

 

I hope this helps.

Thank you, Very helpfull, Wish i found this site sooner, Its nice to be able to see what other shops are doing, hopefully i can help also.

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