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By Joe Marconi in Joe's BlogMost shop owners would agree that the independent auto repair industry has been too cheap for too long regarding its pricing and labor rates. However, can we keep raising our labor rates and prices until we achieve the profit we desire and need? Is it that simple?
The first step in achieving your required gross and net profit is understanding your numbers and establishing the correct labor and part margins. The next step is to find your business's inefficiencies that impact high production levels.
Here are a few things to consider. First, do you have the workflow processes in place that is conducive to high production? What about your shop layout? Do you have all the right tools and equipment? Do you have a continuous training program in place? Are technicians waiting to use a particular scanner or waiting to access information from the shop's workstation computer?
And lastly, are all the estimates written correctly? Is the labor correct for each job? Are you allowing extra time for rust, older vehicles, labor jobs with no parts included, and the fact that many published labor times are wrong? Let's not forget that perhaps the most significant labor loss is not charging enough labor time for testing, electrical work, and other complicated repairs.
Once you have determined the correct labor rate and pricing, review your entire operation. Then, tighten up on all those labor leaks and inefficiencies. Improving production and paying close attention to the labor on each job will add much-needed dollars to your bottom line.
By Joe Marconi
Many auto repair shops are still busy, and many are booked out from a few days to weeks. After the initial shock of Covid, the recovery for our independent auto repair industry has been quite good, with many positive indicators for the future.
However, how many of the auto repair shops that did suffer a great loss in business during the lockdown phase of Covid would have survived if not for the SBA loans, the Pay Protection Program and the Employee Retention Credit?
Building a cash reserve is crucial to prepare yourself for the next economic downturn. How much should you set aside? That depends on your business model, how much debt you have and other financial conditions. Speak to your accountant, financial advisor and business coach, if you have one.
Rule of thumb, you should have at least three months of operating expenses set aside in a dedicated bank account. Some accountants and financial advisors may suggest up to six months.
By Hands On
Tekmetric re-designed the appearance and I can not stand it. I refuse to pay $399 a month for software that gives me a headache to look at. Anyone have a good alternative to tekmetric with all the same functionality that either has a tiered pricing schedule that makes sense for smaller shops, or is less then $399 a month, or looks like tekmetric used to and costs about the same?
The only integrations I use from tekmetric are parts ordering and the built in labor catalog, I do not use any of the marketing features so those are not important to me.
Recorded Live at the 2023 Institute Summit, shop owner turned coach Jennifer Hulbert discusses the value of joining a coaching group. Find out what it's like to be in a coaching group with the Institute, and why she is passionate about celebrating other people's accomplishments.
Jennifer Hulbert, Service Plus Automotive, Calcium, NY. Facilitator for the Institute for Automotive Business Excellence.
Has 3 coaching clients- discovering finances, gross profit, structuring segments of business, increasing billable hours, and implementing a parts matrix. Facilitating- a group usually consists of 18 to 20 shop owners. They are assigned a partner, they have an individual accountability partner along with access to their facilitator coach. Have three in-person meetings a year. Part of those in-person meetings is to evaluate the whole shop. Go in, do a full evaluation of the shop, and give the owner feedback on areas for improvement. The other time is spent with training, and reviewing financial numbers, because if you don't know your numbers, you're never going to grow your business. In between, they have a couple of Zoom meetings as an entire group, and then the facilitator does reach out individually once a month. Never be the smartest person in the room If you’re not learning, you’re not growing Celebrate other people's accomplishments Joining a coaching company- understand profits, understand the structure of a business, understand your numbers, and structure your finances to make a profit. “Mama Bear of the Team”- Jennifer wants to see individual employees and their families succeed. Ensuring whatever decision you are making about the company is going to benefit your employees Women can do anything that a man can do Read the book “Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business”- communicate clear goals, build a leadership team, and hold each other accountable. Increased sales by 38%
Thanks to our Partner, NAPA AUTO CARE Learn more about NAPA AUTO CARE and the benefits of being part of the NAPA family by visiting www.NAPAAutoCare.com Connect with the Podcast: -Join our Insider List: https://remarkableresults.biz/insider -All books mentioned on our podcasts: https://remarkableresults.biz/books -Our Classroom page for personal or team learning: https://remarkableresults.biz/classroom -Buy Me a Coffee: https://www.buymeacoffee.com/carm -The Aftermarket Radio Network: https://aftermarketradionetwork.com -Special episode collections: https://remarkableresults.biz/collections
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By ASOG Podcast
Opening a Shop? Don't Make This Critical Mistake!
During Today's episode #104 The crew from SMP and I Talk About:
What is a Chicken Flicker? Behind-the-scenes dirt on Kim & Brian from SMP What's the best part of your work day? What's the difference between a successful client and one that isn't? What would your advice be for a shop starting out that isn't able to hire someone like SMP? How cute is Dutton? Favorite Cartoon Character? What did you want to be when you grew up? What book are you reading now, if any?
This episode is sponsored by AutoLeap. AutoLeap is a cloud-based all-in-one automotive invoice software that helps you supercharge your mechanic shop. Their customers have experienced:
30% increase in revenue by improving transparency and trust 50% reduction in time spent researching and ordering parts 10% increase in profit margins through robust reporting
Click here to learn more about AutoLeap and schedule a demo: http://bit.ly/3GRgO88
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