Search Results for: inspections
Inspections and testing, policies and procedures.pdf
No Time For Inspections With Waiters
Problem: Customer is waiting for an oil change (or other quick service) and it takes too much time to do the inspection that you want performed on every car.
Solution: Pare down that inspection to include only the most critical items.
Sure, it’s a compromise, but it’s far better than skipping the inspection entirely due to time constraints. Remember, you want a solid policy to perform some type of inspection on virtually every car that you service. You will benefit and your good customers will appreciate it.
Why Don’t Our Courtesy Inspections Get Results?
Often the answer is because they are treated as an afterthought. Separate them from the other services the car is receiving. Perform courtesy inspections on every car first thing in the morning so the service advisor can review them and prepare estimates. Then proceed to the requested services for the day. This will prevent the advisor from being overloaded with a lot of information all at one time and likely result in a higher average RO.
Time Clocking – Other than when performing the actual repair or service, during which of the following are the techs at your shop normally punched (clocked) on to the vehicle? Please check all that apply.
Last time we discussed how the crackdown on illegal immigration affects your auto shop. This should be a real concern for any auto shop owner now and heading into 2018. The immigration landscape has definitely changed this past year. In this blog piece we will discuss steps your auto shop should take to protect it in the event of an audit or immigration investigation.
How up to date is your business on immigration law and how to comply with it? If your staff is not familiar with the right forms to use and what the law requires of your business, you and your company could face fines, disruption of business, or worse.
Currently all businesses must have their workers complete and sign I-9 forms, regardless of whether they were born in the United States. This has been the law all along. However, last July the U.S. Government issued a new I-9 form, and, as of September 18, 2017, the use of this form is mandatory. All businesses must use the I-9 form with the revision date of 7/17/2017. The penalty for the failure to use the correct form is fines.
Your company should audit itself for compliance with the I-9 form and make certain that all of its workers are documented and legally employed. Checking all I-9 forms on file will allow your business to find and fix mistakes, weed out outdated or incorrect records, and terminate any illegal workers you may have unwittingly been employing. It will also give you peace of mind and a solid footing on which to stand if ICE does decide to audit your business. If you’d like help with conducting an I-9 audit, ComplyRight offers a free useful guide here.
Your company should have its records prepared in case of an ICE audit. ICE investigators can show up anytime with a Notice of Inspection and ask to audit any business’ I-9 forms. It’s more likely to happen to companies in industries that have employed large numbers of illegal immigrants, but that does include auto repair. Considering this, it would be advisable to give your company’s record keeper advance notice so that he or she can audit the business ahead of time, check all records, and maintain those records in one easily accessible place.
In the event of an audit, your record keeper should present ICE investigators with the I-9 documentation, and offer only records that are required. Bear in mind that businesses are not required to allow any investigator access to nonpublic areas without a legal search warrant, and should not feel pressured into waiving the permitted notice time which is typically three days.
The costs of hiring illegal aliens have never been higher to businesses. This is true. The 10,000 new ICE agents the government is hiring in order to enforce immigration law will make an impact going forward, so it is especially important now that businesses accurately verify the identity and employment eligibility of new workers and make certain all is in compliance with current U.S. Government law.
The following is a list of management software companies offering automotive shop management systems from the most basic to those with a long list of features. If you are curious what features are offered by a particular auto management software then try a free demo – or get more details from the Management Software Demos links on our Management Resources Page.
Hopefully, not much. If your shop has not yet gone paperless for estimates, RO’s, inspections, and most other things that were once common to print, your shop has fallen behind. Customers will begin to view your shop as not very high tech, behind the curve – regardless of your actual abilities. Paperless operation has moved from one of those things you ought to do someday to one of those things you should have already done by now.
What about the cost? Should be minimal if you have up to date management software and equipment. If not, it’s time to move funds in that direction. First class software and equipment can do much of the work you are likely paying employees to do now – you may be able to reduce your payroll! Also, remember that it costs a lot of money for all that printing – paper, ink, equipment. Most of that will disappear once you have gone paperless.
Maybe it’s when the car arrives, maybe when it leaves. Customer says these lights were on, tech says otherwise. Oh, boy – here we go! Let’s eliminate this fire before it occurs.
More and more shops are performing inspections electronically on a tablet or phone, and usually the ability exists to take a photo and attach it to an inspection line. So, add a “Warning Lights” line to the initial courtesy inspection you do on every car when it first comes in, and add the same line to the quality inspection you do on every car when it is done. Take in and out photos of the instrument panel. Now we can see who remembers correctly, and we can review it in the future should the question arise.
Many auto repair shops experience periodic customer increases, often seasonally: the summer spike, spring repairs, and others. Which is great, right? Yes and no. While it’s always good to see more business, if your auto shop is unprepared for it or manages it badly, you may actually lose regular customers over the long run.
Most auto shop managers can handle a small influx of customers by just powering through, working longer hours, or calling in additional staff. The problems begin when that rush extends beyond a few days. This is the point at which managers stop riding the wave, so to speak, and just start hanging on to the board for dear life. Getting repairs done and out the door becomes the only goal, and anything beyond that – recommendations for additional service, technician inspections, and shop walkarounds – stops.
Don’t let this happen to you. Here are some ways to better juggle customer spikes so they result in real growth – and not harm – your business.
Maintain shop procedure – Your auto shop should have an established procedure of service that is always followed by your staff in order to ensure consistency and quality control. If it does not, creating one should be your first priority. When your staff knows and understands your expectations of them, it’s easier for them to conform to them. During peak service times it is even more important to stick to procedure because that will be what stops your employees from cutting service corners when they feel temporarily overwhelmed.
Do not overbook – Remember: quality over quantity. In the very short term, more business is more money for the shop, but if your shop does not have the resources to handle the additional cars, your customers will realize, in short order, that they are not getting your best work, and they will not come back. Tell your sales advisor or scheduler to be realistic and not cave to pressure to book more work than your shop can do and do well.
Preview the work scheduled for the day – Before the start of the day, ideally even the night before, have your manager go over what is scheduled to be done for each customer and make sure the paperwork necessary is already filled out. If this is done ahead of time, your service advisors will be less rushed and will be able to make additional recommendations to customers based on their service histories and the actual needs of their vehicles.
Review the work done each day – Being prepared is crucial, but so is evaluating performance as it happens. If your manager knows what should have been done or what could have been done, it’s much simpler to compare that to what was done immediately after the fact and make adjustments as necessary. A regular review of customer service will help address weaknesses before they can become real problems.
Don’t let a seasonal rush damage your shop’s performance or reputation. By implementing and/or following the above steps, you can see short term increases in business become real growth for your auto repair shop, and you will see new customers become repeat customers.