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  • PAPERWORK, PAPERWORK, PAPERWORK- AHHHH!!! SHOP MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE SELECTION GUIDE

    Posted by greg-jazzdesigns-com on June 5, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    The automotive repair shop owner/manager has many concerns regarding

    “paperwork”. Since this is a necessary function of any shop, it is

    important to handle “paperwork” as efficiently as possible in order to

    remain profitable and competitive. We have studied this extensively

    and they are:

    1- Estimates/pending work orders/paid work orders:

    A- Producing estimates/pending work orders/paid work orders

    in a timely and accurate manner.

    B- Providing very professional looking estimates/pending

    work orders/paid work orders.

    C- Ability to switch to different and/or customize

    estimates/pending work orders/paid work orders.

    D- Ability to comply with all local/state/federal

    layout/legal requirements.

    E- Ability to customize all shop disclaimers/previsions.

    F- Ability to email estimates/pending work orders/paid work

    orders.

    G- Ability to delete estimates/pending work orders/paid

    work orders.

    H- Ability to automatically charge for shop supplies based

    on percentage or flat amount. Percentage able to be calculated from

    parts, labor or both.

    2- Counter sales:

    A- Ability to quickly produce/print separate parts only

    invoices- no vehicle or labor.

    B- Providing very professional looking parts only invoices.

    C- Ability to switch to different and/or customize parts

    only invoices.

    D- Ability to customize all shop disclaimers/previsions.

    E- Ability to email parts only invoices.

    F- Ability to delete parts only invoices.

    3- Accounts/payments:

    A- Ability to indicate type of payment and generate and

    keep track of billing, statements, etc.

    4- Customers:

    A- Adding contact and vehicle information.

    B- Tracking vehicles.

    C- Tracking customer/vehicle history and accessing it in a

    timely manner.

    D- Ability to delete customers.

    5- Parts:

    A- Adding parts.

    B- Knowing whether parts are stocked or purchased as

    needed.

    C- Tracking inventoried parts’ stock levels.

    D- Tracking part vendors.

    E- Producing purchase orders.

    F- Ability to import/export parts.

    G- Ability add parts directly from parts vendor(s).

    H- Ability to delete parts.

    I- Pricing matrix- ability to mark-up parts based on cost

    (i.e. $0-$20.00, $20.01-$50.00, $50.01-$85, etc.).

    J- Automatic mark-up or mark-down of parts from cost or

    retail based on customer type (i.e. retail, fleet, wholesale, etc.).

    6- Labor:

    A- Adding labor.

    B- Ability to automatically assign hourly labor rate

    pricing based on customer type assignment(i.e. A,B,C,D).

    C- Ability to delete labor.

    7- Canned/kit jobs:

    A- Ability to create canned/kit jobs, enabling the

    user to add parts and labor to an estimate/pending work order/paid

    work order with one click.

    B- Ability to create canned/kit jobs, selecting from

    existing parts and labor items.

    C- Ability to delete canned/kit jobs.

    8- Reporting:

    A- Since reporting is important, a variety of report

    criteria can decrease time spent on compiling the information

    necessary.

    B- Some of the major reporting categories are:

    -Counter Sale Profit

    -Counter Sales

    -Customer Balance

    -Customer List

    -Customer Ship List

    -Parts List

    -Part Sales

    -Payments Received

    -Price List

    -Stocked Items

    -Low Stock Alerts

    -Work Order Profit

    -Work Order Summary

    -Tax Detail

    In order to minimize time and effort spent on these concerns, it is

    important to research technology options most suited to providing

    solutions to the above items causing the most “pain” to shop

    owners/managers. There are two technology categories to investigate:

    shop management software and reliable, accurate parts and labor

    information.

    With regards to selecting shop management software, owners/managers

    must first “test drive” the free trials of several different programs.

    Since time is a crucial consideration, the programs to be tested must

    be selected carefully, as it is not practical to try them all. Make a

    list of the above “pain” items that are of the greatest concern.

    Performing a search engine search for “automotive shop management

    software” is useful, but a Google search will yield approximately

    1,460,000 results. A more efficient method is to check automotive shop

    management blog/forum sites such as:

    https://www.automotivemanagementnetwork.com/. Members can go to

    https://www.automotivemanagementnetwork.com/auto_management_software_ve

    ndor_list.php where it breaks it down to the top twenty.

    Once you have made your selections, inquire whether the software is

    currently compatible with the upcoming Windows 8. If not, you may want

    to pass, as this can cause considerable inconvenience and down time in

    the near future. When “test driving” the programs you have selected

    and downloaded, the following guidelines are important:

    1- Make sure the software has the functionality to address all the

    items on your “pain” list. Generally, dealers and large shops require

    much more functionality (and complexity) than medium or smaller shops.

    2- If software support is important to you, inquire if it is

    available.

    3- If support is available, inquire if it is by email, phone (toll-

    free or not?) or both.

    4- With phone support, is live support available during business

    hours, or is it always voice mail?

    5- If you leave a voice mail, is the call returned in a timely

    manner (i.e. the same or next business day)?

    6- Check pricing- is there a one-time payment or an ongoing monthly

    fee?

    7- Is there a charge for support?

    8- Is there a charge for upgrades?

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    greg-jazzdesigns-com replied 10 years ago 1 Member · 1 Reply
  • 1 Reply
Advertiser / Sponsor
  • greg-jazzdesigns-com

    Member
    June 20, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    SHOP MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE SELECTION GUIDE

    The automotive repair shop owner/manager has many concerns regarding

    “paperwork”. Since this is a necessary function of any shop, it is

    important to handle “paperwork” as efficiently as possible in order to

    remain profitable and competitive. We have studied this extensively

    and they are:

    1- Estimates/pending work orders/paid work orders:

    A- Producing estimates/pending work orders/paid work orders

    in a timely and accurate manner.

    B- Providing very professional looking estimates/pending

    work orders/paid work orders.

    C- Ability to switch to different and/or customize

    estimates/pending work orders/paid work

    orders.

    D- Ability to comply with all local/state/federal

    layout/legal requirements.

    E- Ability to customize all shop disclaimers/previsions.

    F- Ability to email estimates/pending work orders/paid work

    orders.

    G- Ability to delete estimates/pending work orders/paid

    work orders.

    H- Ability to automatically charge for shop supplies based

    on percentage or flat amount. Percentage

    able to be calculated from parts, labor or both.

    2- Counter sales:

    A- Ability to quickly produce/print separate parts only

    invoices- no vehicle or labor.

    B- Providing very professional looking parts only invoices.

    C- Ability to switch to different and/or customize parts

    only invoices.

    D- Ability to customize all shop disclaimers/previsions.

    E- Ability to email parts only invoices.

    F- Ability to delete parts only invoices.

    3- Accounts/payments:

    A- Ability to indicate type of payment and generate and

    keep track of billing, statements, etc.

    4- Customers:

    A- Adding contact and vehicle information.

    B- Tracking vehicles.

    C- Tracking customer/vehicle history and accessing it in a

    timely manner.

    D- Ability to delete customers.

    5- Parts:

    A- Adding parts.

    B- Knowing whether parts are stocked or purchased as

    needed.

    C- Tracking inventoried parts’ stock levels.

    D- Tracking part vendors.

    E- Producing purchase orders.

    F- Ability to import/export parts.

    G- Ability add parts directly from parts vendor(s).

    H- Ability to delete parts.

    I- Pricing matrix- ability to mark-up parts based on cost

    (i.e. $0-$20.00, $20.01-$50.00, $50.01- $85, etc.)

    J- Automatic mark-up or mark-down of parts from cost or

    retail based on customer type (i.e. retail,

    fleet, wholesale, etc.).

    6- Labor:

    A- Adding labor.

    B- Ability to automatically assign hourly labor rate

    pricing based on customer type assignment (i.e. A,B,C,D).

    C- Ability to delete labor.

    7- Canned/kit jobs:

    A- Ability to create canned/kit jobs, enabling the

    user to add parts and labor to an

    estimate/pending work order/paid work order with one click.

    B- Ability to create canned/kit jobs, selecting from

    existing parts and labor items.

    C- Ability to delete canned/kit jobs.

    8- Taxes:

    A- Ability to use two sales tax rates when required.

    B- Ability to tax shipping.

    C- When using two sales tax rates, being able to select

    whether tax rate 2 is based upon just parts and/or

    labor totals, or those totals after tax 1 has been applied.

    9- Reporting:

    A- Since reporting is important, a variety of report

    criteria can decrease time spent on compiling the information

    necessary.

    B- Some of the major reporting categories are:

    -Counter Sale Profit

    -Counter Sales

    -Customer Balance

    -Customer List

    -Customer Ship List

    -Parts List

    -Part Sales

    -Payments Received

    -Price List

    -Stocked Items

    -Low Stock Alerts

    -Work Order Profit

    -Work Order Summary

    -Tax Detail

    In order to minimize time and effort spent on these concerns, it is

    important to research technology options most suited to providing

    solutions to the above items causing the most “pain” to shop

    owners/managers. There are two technology categories to investigate:

    shop management software and reliable, accurate parts and labor

    information.

    With regards to selecting shop management software, owners/managers

    must first “test drive” the free trials of several different programs.

    Since time is a crucial consideration, the programs to be tested must

    be selected carefully, as it is not practical to try them all. Make a

    list of the above “pain” items that are of the greatest concern.

    Performing a search engine search for “automotive shop management

    software” is useful, but a Google search will yield approximately

    1,460,000 results. A more efficient method is to check automotive shop

    management blog/forum sites such as:

    https://www.automotivemanagementnetwork.com/. Members can go to

    https://www.automotivemanagementnetwork.com/auto_management_software_ve

    ndor_list.php where it breaks it down to the top twenty. Additionally,

    you can go to http://www.linkedin.com/ , join the Automotive

    Management Professionals group and read the discussions at

    http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=82093&goback=%2Egmr_82093. Finally,

    you can join iATN at http://www.iatn.net/, and go to the Shop

    Management Forum at http://members.iatn.net/forums/post/index.aspx?

    f=forum15&m=0.

    Once you have made your selections, inquire whether the software is

    currently compatible with the upcoming Windows 8. If not, you may want

    to pass, as this can cause considerable inconvenience and down time in

    the near future. When “test driving” the programs you have selected

    and downloaded, the following guidelines are important:

    1- Make sure the software has the functionality to address all the

    items on your “pain” list. Generally, dealers and large shops require

    much more functionality (and complexity) than medium or smaller shops.

    2- If software support is important to you, inquire if it is

    available.

    3- If support is available, inquire if it is by email, phone (toll-

    free or not?) or both.

    4- With phone support, is live support available during business

    hours, or is it always voice mail?

    5- If you leave a voice mail, is the call returned in a timely

    manner (i.e. the same or next business day)?

    6- Check pricing- is there a one-time payment or an ongoing monthly

    fee?

    7- Is there a charge for support?

    8- Is there a charge for upgrades?

    Home