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Technician/Service Writer Dual Role

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I was offered a job today. My service manager asked me if I would like to be a service writer AND a technician at the same time. I asked him, well how would that work?? His suggestion was to spend this amount of time in the shop, and this amount of time at the desk...."we will work some kind of schedule out." I have worked on cars for about 14 years now, I don't want to turn wrenches forever. I do want to move up in the world, and his suggestion was to get exposure in all areas of the service department. Has anyone done this before, or just any opinions would be greatly appreciated!



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I second and third the above

There is so many things to be taken into consideration, close to impossible to recommend...


I'd say, ask yourself why did he offer it to you. Who will benefit the most from the "transition"? I recommend getting your C1 ASE first, shadow the writer for couple of hours a week (2-3 weeks), so it does not negatively affect your earning ability. Then start saving and stashing the money away. That way if you make any kind of move, you fell safer, bolder and more confident at whatever you end up doing.

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Thanks for all the input. One of our service writers hit the road. I would fill in when the other writers had days off. I'm just not a sit behind the desk all day kind of guy. There is deffinetley more pay involved, and If it was easy everyone would do it. Maybe I'll give it a test drive for a few weeks! Thanks again everybody!

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Cars don't talk back....people do. Keep that in mind when you're in the service writer side of things. Ya get used to it, but it's a lot easier to bitch at a stubborn bolt then deal with a "bitch" in the lobby.

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Working two positions in the shop is like playing two positions on a ball field. It's hard to be great at both. My fear is that your technical expertise may interfere with the service advisor role. I am not saying this is not a good opportunity, it can be. I am saying that techs have a very difficult time making the transition onto the service counter.


We took an ASE master tech and moved him into the service dept. He excelled and now he managers the company. So, it can be done.


Learn all you can about sales, building relationships, the key numbers of the business and about business in general.


The most difficult part, at least for me....putting my tools down.

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That's a good point, I have always feared being a service writer and being too "technical" with the customers. Building relationships with customers is what I have been trying to work on the past year, but its kind of hard to do that in a dealership, but I have left hundreds of business cards in customers dashes! And yes, putting wrenches down is hard, it's almost a pride thing.

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Guess I'm the weird one in the group, but I can't wait to put my wrenches down! ASE Master Certified, blah blah blah, I'll take a desk job with slacks and a Polo/button down shirt any day over bending over a fender and busting knuckles! However, I have always been very social, told I have the 'gift of gab', etc. On top of that, service writers USUALLY (not always) make better money. And they don't go home with cuts on their greasy hands, a snap-on bill, and a bad back.


Sure, 'wrenching' might be fun, but for a career, I know what I want! That's like choosing between playing football and golf. Football might be fun, but golf isn't gonna beat you to death. I'm sure not everyone will agree with me, just thought I would give my opinion.


Brian, I would go for the opportunity, work your butt off, read some books on relationship building & friend making & sales, learn to shave daily, smile, and put the wrenches down. Worse case scenario, you unlock your box again, and pick the wrenches back up.

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