Looking to make the switch from Mitchell!!!Posted by aaronk on November 7, 2014 at 11:53 am
I know this has been talked about before but I’m looking for some fresh input.We have just about had it with Mitchell Software. We decided to make the switch from 5.9 to the new 6.5SE because we were promised new features and upgrades that the 5.9 system didn’t have. Some of the upgrades are nice but many of the features that we were promised ether don’t work or they have told us they are “working on it”. 6.5SE also seems to be very “glitchy”. It freezes up on us quite a bit and at least once per day we have to completely shut down all of the users and restart Mitchell on all of our work stations. The reporting is terrible. Mitchell allows you to input all kinds of marketing info on your customer but the software has no way of retrieving this info in reporting. The customer service seems to be getting worse by the day. The upside to Mitchell is that is fairly user freindly and we are used to it. We’ve had it for about 10 years.I’ve just about had enough but we are terrified of getting into a new program! If you have made the switch to a different software, please share your experience and what company you went to and what you like/ dislike about them.
MemberNovember 10, 2014 at 1:30 pm
We’re in the same boat. We’ve looked, but can’t find a good replacement yet.
MemberNovember 10, 2014 at 2:30 pm
Hi. Ed here, M1 Rep NY. I’ve only seen it glichy when PC doesn’t meet system requirements or has a virus or trojans on system (I went to a shop and installed malware software and he had over a thousand malware and trojans and was wondering why his more than adequate system was giving him issues). As far as features we will be rolling out more features Ie: Manger Mobile on tablet etc- not sure when so this is up-to HQ.
Forum offers many tips and help and monitored by HQ
Run this to see if your system meets requirements: http://seupgrade.com/
Product Training and has “Live” chat to help.
Malware Program – free
I hope this helps.
Mitchell1 Rep NY Area
MemberNovember 10, 2014 at 4:18 pm
YES, I CHANGED FROM MITCHELL, WAS A CUSTOMER FOR 7 YEARS. FIRST THING, WHEN MITCHELL WENT TO THAT GOOGLE SYLE OF SEARCH IT MESSED THE PROGRAM ALL UP. WENT TO LANKAR SOFTWARE , WE STARTED DOING TIRES SO I NEEDED A PROGRAM THAT DELT WITH TIRES, UNFORTUNATELY A GOOD PROGRAM WITH GOOD PRICE & SUPPORT. TAKE AT LEAST 6 MONTHS TO A YEAR TO TEST DRIVE DIFFERENT PROGRAMS. LEARN FROM MINE & OTHERS MISTAKES. FINDING THE RIGHT SOFTWARE IS LIKE GETTING MARRIED. SOMETIMES YOU’LL GET THE DEMO & IT SEEMS GOOD. DON’T SIGN-UP. ASK THEM FOR AN EXTENDED TIME. EVEN LEASE THE PROGRAM FOR A MONTH OR 2, WHILE STILL USING YOUR OLD SOFTWARE. THIS GIVES YOU THE UN PRESSURED TIME TO REALLY TRY IT OUT. I SIGNED UP TO 3 DIFFERENT PROGRAMS, ONE (PROTRACTOR) HAD ALL THE BELLS & WHISTLES EVEN EZ CAT. BUT IT WAS TOO HARD TO MANUVER THREW THE PROGRAM. I KNEW MY PEOPLE WOULD HAVE PROBLEMS. I LOST ABOUT $400 ON THAT ONE. THE NEXT ONE WAS (FAST TRAK) GOOD PROGRAM. HOWEVER I WAS SO BUSY CHECKING OUT THE PROGRAM, AFTER I STARTED I FOUND OUT THAT YOU HAD TO PAY FOR TECH SUPPORT. GOOD PROGRAM BUT IF YOU HAVE TO LEASE A PROGRAM & PAY FOR TECH SUPPORT, NO WAY. I LOST ANOTHER $400 ON THAT ONE. FINALLY I BOUGHT REPAIR WRITER OUTRIGHT – CHEAP PRICE – VERY SIMPLE TO OPERATE – TECH SUPPORT TOOK 2 DAYS 2 TIMES TO GET BACK TO US. LOST $800 ON THAT ONE. FINALLY I GOT AUTO BIZ & I’M SATISFIED, THEY HAVE GOOD TECH SUPPORT. MAKE SURE WHEN YOU ARE FIGURING OUT EXPENSE, FIGURE ALL OF THE HIDDEN COSTS – SUPPORT – HOW YOUR PEOPLE WILL BE ABLE TO HANDLE IT.IF YOU DO TIRES MAKE SURE THEY HAVE A TIRE MODULE. I WENT THREW A LOT OF CHANGES. NO SOFTWARE WILL BE 100% WHAT YOU WANT BUT TAKE YOUR TIME!
MemberNovember 10, 2014 at 4:18 pm
I haven’t logged on in a long while, but after the above message, I couldn’t resist… On 10/17/2014 my computer running 5.9 gave up so I went and bought a brand new unit running Win8.1, quad core, 4gb memory, 1Tb hard drive, and based on a Mitchel rep telling me I couldn’t load 5.9 on it, updated to 6.5. I can’t STAND it! It’s buggy, as in, it hangs, it’s slow, it constantly has to be re-activated, certain typing entries are misinterpreted (sometimes typing in the “work requested” or similar boxes either exits that box, or once, closed the entire program. The only “virus” this computer could have had was “windows”, but there’s no getting around that one. And NO, I DON’T want another rep getting ahold of this one as I don’t want all my settings wiped out as they did to make my other computer stand in as a temp with 5.9 while I purchased this one. I just wanted to make it clear the “it has a virus” statement doesn’t hold water when the program is unstable on a system right out of the box.
Edit: reckon I spoke when I shouldn’t have… I just hit F5 to input a payment, entered customer number, no auto fill, entered it again, nada, entered it then tabbed, nope, hit done, program exited asking me to back up. At least it got that right (the backup, not the bailing out). Sorry to go on, but to hear someone on the inside promoting this, well, it needs work! The previous did me well since 2005 or 2006.
MemberNovember 10, 2014 at 4:43 pm
I have been using Mitchell since way back when it was only books. It would be hard for me to change. When we upgraded to 6.5 it was a little buggy but only briefly. Tech support was able to do what they do and it has been great. They have added a tire module but I dont sell tires so I dont know if it is any good or not. I use a lot of their reports. They arent perfect but they work for me. You can add a report module thru Bolt On Technology but that is a subscription. I dont need it. I am very happy with the Mitchell program.
MemberNovember 10, 2014 at 5:29 pm
I have used M1 for 22 years… I have a love/hate relationship with them. BUT it is still the best professional auto repair shop management software out! I’m using the latest ver. and it works well. The best thing that has happened is Bolt on Technology! The tools they have incorporated are awesome and really helped to take our shop to the next level. Again none of them are perfect and have everything. So… I’m staying with M1 for now
MemberNovember 10, 2014 at 7:55 pm
I have been using Winworks AutoShop. It’s very easy to use, my service advisor really likes it because it easy. You pay for it and own it. The monthly cost of Mitchell’s program will pay for the Winworks program in 1-3 years depending on which level you chose, then you don’t pay anymore, you own it! There is a yearly fee for free tech support and updates, but I haven’t needed either for 4 years. I did call in once for an issue I was having after I add a network. And their charge for tech help was about 1/2 of their yearly charge for free tech help, so I saved 3 1/2 years of payments for tech help. Once you get a set up you like, leave it alone. no updates to get used to again or to screw things up figuring out how to use it. If it gets a glitch, pay for an update to fix it or call the tech line to fix it. They will get right back to you and for a fee that cheaper that a couple years worth free tech support, you’ll have it fixed.
MemberNovember 17, 2014 at 11:45 am
Aaron,You might want to take a look at Protractor software. I used Protractor for 10 years in a 10 bay automotive shop and since selling the company two years ago i have been distributing the program. Feel free to take a look at my website http://www.rubbernwrench.com and look under the “test drive tab” for interactive videos on some of the features of the program. Best of luck in your search and please feel free to contact me if you would like more information.Ivan Brown
MemberNovember 19, 2014 at 8:17 am
We have been using Protractor for several years. They just went through a major upgrade on their software and it’s great. They have a bunch of canned reports plus, you’re able to build your own customized reports as needed. Being a multi-shop operation, I especially like that I can monitor any location from where ever I may be…as long as I have an internet connection. Protractor is worth investigating.
MemberDecember 29, 2014 at 11:03 am
Well Mitchell Seems to be getting worse.Ed Gordon- I have had several people from Mitchell tell me the same thing about a virus or malware so I had two different IT companies come out and take a look. Our system is squeaky clean and all of our computers far exceed the system requirements that Mitchell says the systems needs. Now every time we call Mitchell tech support, the people we talk to have no clue how to help us. They keep telling us to post a question on the forum for help. WHY IN THE WORLD would tech support tell us to ask for help on a forum??? Isn’t tech support supposed to help us with technical issues? I had another Mitchell rep tell me that Mitchell does not plan to improve on their core program. They are only going to concentrate on “add on” modules like Bolt on Technologies. We actually had a tech support rep tell us that we are what they consider “power users” of the program and the program was not designed to handle a shop of our size and volume. He said they are geared toward smaller shops. It’s interesting that the sales person didn’t mention that when he sold me a 2 year contract for $300 per month. I can handle a few glitches here and there but when they happen all day every day and seem to have no fix in sight, I’m done.So far we are looking at:ProtractorAuto BizMaxxtraxxIf anyone has any info to add for any of these systems, it be very much appreciated!!
MemberJanuary 3, 2015 at 7:26 pm
I am a software engineer who is looking to help business owners solve problems. On this thread, people are having problems with Mitchell software.
Could anyone post any specific issues you have with the software and what business problems it does not allow you to solve?
MemberJanuary 21, 2015 at 9:25 pm
I think it’s fairly decent software. They are full of empty promises. If they tell you that they’ll have something out in the next 6 months figure at least 5 years. We plan to keep using it. Whenever they make changes there’s glitches and problems.
MemberJanuary 26, 2015 at 3:24 pm
I believe a few clarifications are in order to explain how our technical support works and our progress with program updates. Technical support continues to support our software products; calls are answered by first level agents who can handle a wide variety of issues. If the problem requires a higher level of expertise, it will be elevated to a 2nd level support engineer. We keep case notes to retain history for future referral and to share details with product development.
The purpose of the forum is for users to discuss the software, exchange ideas and enter enhancement requests that we review. It is monitored by myself and other Mitchell 1 personnel daily to ensure it is as valuable and productive as possible.
Tech support is trained to think inside-the-box; this is the way the program was designed and how it is used. When something is suggested outside that framework, they may refer the user to the forum to see how other shops handle the same situation or to make an enhancement request. If a tech support agent is deferring a customer to the forum for a standard inside-the-box performance issue they should be handling, that is NOT our intent and I need to know when that happens. (it’s rare and we handle it)
managerforum.net or the Forum button in the Manager software provides access to the forum. Everyone is welcome to take a look as most of it doesn’t require a login account to see it. You do need to register with an account number to post, reply or see the member’s only topics. (Wrench, Shop2Shop, Clubhouse)
After admittedly a slow spell, I’m pleased to report we have been making a lot of progress as of late. The AutoUpdater function (for Manager SE 6.5) puts new features, enhancements and fixes in the field much sooner than the old disc updates process. These occur every few weeks; users get a screen notification when they are available and the option to proceed or postpone to a less busy time.
The interactive Home “splash” screen includes a What’s New change log. I could only fit a fraction of it in here for space.
Tim McDonnell – Mitchell 1 Training Manager
- V 6.5.54
- Now able to configure Web and Email Address in Shop Settings
- No longer showing duplicates in Order Pick List for all orders
- Added a Manual Check for Updates Menu Entry (Security Area – Special Maintenance): Help -> Check For Updates
- Preserve Estimate Totals when converting a Special Order to a Repair Order to an Invoice
- Improved Follow Up Report menu:
- When deleting a customer from search result list, now put the selected focus on the item above (no longer jumps to top of list)
- When deleting one vehicle from the search results list, of a customer with multiple vehicles, the entire customer is no longer removed
- Selects the proper printer paper source (based on selected printer settings)
- Collates the printed pages when multiple copies are printed
- Invoice Hours Report: Correctly showing heading on each page, Handle Invoice numbers greater than 9,999.99, Hazmat now back in labor total, Totals box now prints only if tire fee is present – re-ordered lines (Labor, Parts, Sublet, Tire Fees, Discount, Sub Tax, Total, Balance)
- Repair Order Detail: Now showing scheduled date and increased font size of totals area
- Cash Receipt: Changed ‘Report Data’ to ‘Print Date’, Now room for name (will print name or company is exists), Better alignment of totals and currency symbol
- Coupon Utilization Reports: Changed title from ‘Discount ID’ to ‘Coupon ID’, subtitle is now ‘Discount Name:’
- Vehicle Reports by Makes now displays custom vehicles
- Improved Purchase Orders Screen
- Loading hundreds or thousands of P.O.s now takes seconds compared to minutes
- Can now select multiple P.O.s and delete as many as are selected
- ‘Delete’ Button can be configured as a security area (password protected)
- In Parts Entry dialog, turning off Display now hides Profit Margin field
- F4 Invoice Search dialog now allows searching for large Invoice Numbers
- Emailing from revision now changes subject, body and email attachment to reflect “Estimate” (no longer mentions Revised Order)
- Purchase Order Worksheet & Parts Ordering dialog now show “Vendor Qty” instead of “Avail Qty” to clarify that this is the Qty the Vendor has
- Counter Sale Invoice now displays Company Name
- Fixed issue when transferring a revision to a new invoice with no line items. Now, depending on Setup option of convert Invoice to RO on change, you will either have an Invoice or Approved RO
- RO w/Part Detail & Subtotals report now display Subtotal Details
- V 6.5.51
- Corrected Invoice reports to print line items in the same order as displayed in the order grid
- When selling a revision to a blank order, a new RO is now created with a matching RO#
- Better accuracy when calculating total tax values by starting with four digits of precision before rounding; Updated ‘Posted Taxable Orders by Tax Category’ report to show 4 digits of precision
- Added New ‘Material Used – By Vendor’ Management Report
- Parts with Shop Supply/Hazmat on order, when discounted, will calculate using their discounted price not the original part price
- When printing a Revision with no Order, the labor totals reflect the standard or non-standard rates specified
- V 6.5.49
- Committed parts were not properly decrementing when being included in a Special Order
- Previewing Manager printout (Estimates, ROs, Invoices and all reports) will now open in the foreground
- Calculation of Shop Supplies and Hazmat fees on revision modified to base calculation on open revision
- Xcharge payment receipt can now be printed on the Invoice
- Repair button now launches ProDemand/ShopKey Pro without requiring a login. Additionally, if a VIN is present on the order, that will be sent to better identify the vehicle
- Tab order on Customer and vehicle screen corrected
- V 6.5.48
- New “SocialCRM Reports” button with notifications star that alerts you when a new review is received
- New “SocialCRM Reports” button with direct link to SocialCRM dashboard reporting
- New “SocialCRM Details” button with notification star when reviewing a specific consumer’s data during their visit
- New “SocialCRM Details” button displays all communications sent via SocialCRM service for the specific consumer you’re working with
- Large database performance enhanced using additional database indexes
- Purchase Orders were doubling quantity required
- Purchase Order button on main tool bar now visible for all versions
- Cosmetic changes made to Florida Invoice templates, Wisconsin templates and standard estimate templates
- V 6.5.44
- Manager no longer overrides the number of XCharge receipt copies to print
- All disclaimers for Estimates, Repair Orders, Invoices, and Counter sales are now able to store and print 1200 characters
- Added an Inventory Quick Search button to the main tool bar, this window remembers the last category searched
- ATD catalog enhanced to include Tire Ply
- Tire size will now transfer from tire promo screen to ATD catalog to speed searches
- Purchase Order Edit Screen now includes tire size field
- Picklist functionality now includes tire size
- V 6.5.42
- Scrolling to the bottom of a customer list in the New Order (F6) screen no longer crashes the application
- Counter Sales may now be printed without vehicle information
- RepairLink catalog from OEConnection now available for install from m1files.com
- V 6.5.40
- Add VIN Code to underlying query: Tech worksheet now displays VIN Engine code (Ex: `VIN (P)’ ) Extra information will be in the engine string will be displayed as “6.6L, V8 [403CI] VIN ” rather than 6.6L, V8 [403CI]
- Add YMM Engine Info and In Mileage to Intent Title bar: Add YMM Engine Info and In Mileage to dialogs used for Estimator, TSBs, Fluids, and Maintenance
- ACDelco / Nexpart Catalog Direct: Included new ACDelco, Nexpart catalog that supports direct ordering from inside catalog. Orders placed from within the catalog will also automatically generate a purchase order
- Make the ProDemand windows sizable: Intent window now opens full screen and is sizeable.
- Committed Value: Inventory Committed value is now non-editable; this update also recalculates committed quantities for each committed part on open repair orders.
- Interactive home screen: The product screen is now interactive and includes buttons to link to important news
- Labor item should display <none> for tech when configured as <none>: Labor line created will by default show <none> for technician when one has not been assigned.
- Revision with multiple POs: Fixed a defect causing the application to crash when a revision had multiple PO’s for the same part number.
- V 6.5.37
- Email PO to vendor if email address exists: Purchase Order screen now has email button to mail PDF version of the PO to the vendor
- Revision Authorization screen: Add “Received Text Msg” to Revision Authorization screen under Called / Phone drop downs
- Duplex Printing Problem: Explicitly call out for default duplex mode when configuring printer
- PO Button: Include a Purchase Order Button on the main toolbar
- V 6.5.54