September 23, 2014 at 10:05 am #14049
We use Mitchell1. I would rate it 7.5. I’m learning how to pull info from the database using Excel and Word to do marketing/follow-ups. The canned reports are not user friendly when trying to accumulate customer information. They have a marketing arm that provides the customers with on-line access to their vehicle’s history, can add what service was done elsewhere, and recommends maintenance items based on the vehicles mileage. Still learning. The two services is almost $500/mth. I’m thinking this is expensive — what are other programs costing????September 29, 2014 at 10:30 pm #14061
Currently using Winworks Auto Shop, rate it 1 since that’s the lowest score. Program has some nice features, but it is such a badly written piece of software and it has such a clunky feel to use that I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone. I’ll be nice and give customer service a 3 due to they work on call back system which would sometimes be 24 hrs. On a good day it was 2-3 hrs. I gave up calling and just figure it out, which wastes a lot of time,Last used Mitchell ( version 5.9 & 6.4 I believe ) a little over a year ago, rate it 7-8 based on that. The newer version is probably much better from some of the upgrades I hear it got. I give customer service a 8 as it was always pretty good, just some long ( 15 -20 minutes ) hold times once and awhile.Last used Profit Boost about 6 years ago when I had my shop, Rate it 10 based on that version. Customer service was always great also. Only draw back for some might be not having a good internet connection since it’s web based.October 12, 2014 at 9:10 pm #14068
Anybody using Invomax?October 28, 2014 at 10:38 am #14089
We use Mitchell but would like to find another that is not so expensive and user friendlyFebruary 16, 2015 at 7:22 pm #14157
we use Protractor .Net and i give it a “9” we used Pace for many years, then moved over to Protractor in 2003? But they are nothing compared to .Net, we switched in April 14′ it still has some things to fix, but weekly bug fixes, upgrades and enhancements are great. I like that i can have multipul RO’s open [if need be] and add service packages from the inspection results, then estimate all jobs in one sweep, and the Oil change packages, with default MIN/MAX $ is excellent for oil sell pricesMarch 18, 2015 at 10:27 pm #13667
we do everything in QuickBooks. if you’re using shop specific software, what do you take to your accountant at tax time?March 19, 2015 at 3:48 pm #13668
Steve, most shops have management software which handles everything from inventory to marketing to parts ordering to invoicing, etc. etc.The same shops often have QB or some other accounting software – which they use for – accounting.A few shops have it all in one, but that is not very common.Much of the management software integrates with QB.If the only software a shop has is QB for everything the shop spends huge amounts of time doing things that shop management software will handle in very little time or none because of the automation.
5355 Plainfield Ave. NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49525
Tom@AutoCentricRepair.comOctober 22, 2015 at 9:31 am #14315
The Social CRM system works great and and integrates seamlessly with the Manager SE program for live real time interaction with customer reviews. I’ve compared the cost and it is by far the most affordable .October 22, 2015 at 6:33 pm #14316
Shop Boss Pro
5/10 – Not Bad Program just hard to navigate a bit and the design came off as
not being updated for a long time
4/10 – It was feature rich but the navigation made that a negative thing for
Online – 7/10 My best so far, still looking to see if Michelin or another is
better. But since we are already paying for AllDataPro it made sense to spend
the extra $80 for their system rather than another.March 22, 2017 at 9:48 am #24136
We use TireShop by FreedomSoft. Nice program. Works for our quicklube, tireshop, all services in one store. We do $2.7M a year in sales and 900 cars per month. WANTING
digital inspections and thinking of changing to RO Writer or Mitchell to integrate
with Bolt- ON. Any advice would be appreciatedMarch 23, 2017 at 3:17 pm #24175
Mitchell is the 800Lb Gorilla in the room. They are one of the easiest to learn, Pro Demand is better than Identifx, or Alldata. Is constantly improving, And there training is second to none. If you go to a training class put on by Mitchell. You will always want to go.. First class, And the Trainers are top notch.April 6, 2017 at 8:14 am #24561
I will give Lankar software a 9.5-rating simply because it provides shop owners with an All-in-one Shop management Software to address all the business needs.
From professional invoicing to online ordering to full accounting system, Lankar software offers a wide range of solutions at affordable pricing,
There is an option on the website to download its trial version after providing the required details . Trying it once by downloading the free version will help you learn more about the software before you finally go on to buy it from them.June 8, 2017 at 9:36 am #26355
We use mitchell because i am lazy. have been since 1998 . it kinda works. noplace to put tech observations is the sucyest part. We also have the bolt on module that you can build great custom queries.June 15, 2017 at 6:57 am #26512
We use the YES management system by Pace. I’d rate it a 7.5. Works well, has lots of features, support is good. There are things I think could make it better. Parts ordering integration doesn’t work well for us.June 20, 2017 at 12:57 pm #26623
We have been with RO Writer since 2008. It’s got a ton of features, unfortunately rarely does everything work properly. I’ve spent so much money on hardware, software, tech support, tech support for every third party application, hardware tech support to fix what the tech support screwed up, and countless hours each month on phone calls. They take sometimes a week to get back to you (if they do), then they’ll go through a season where they’re available or calling back but this has been the exception since ’08. Even with everything seemingly working ok, it’s slow, it crashes several times a day, and takes far too long to boot and quote. I’ve been told over the years that their issue (too much data on an antiquated Access Database causing mass corruption and system instability) was either: a. “my infrastructure” which I completely rebuilt/wired twice, b. “my hardware” which I’ve replaced in it’s entirety twice, c. “my other software” such as antivirus to which we’ve always moved to whatever they recommended, d. “I use too many of the features” seriously, they said this to me, and e. (love this one) “you type too fast.” Progressive Automotive Systems sold out not too long ago and while hoping for improvements in customer care, we’ve seen a rapid decline from nearly every angle. In case you were wondering, or any ROW folks are reading this, yes we have fresh Cat5e, gigabit routers, 80mb internet, 16gigs of ram on quad-core processor comuputers, use redundant stand alone windows servers running Server 2012. We’re set up.
My issue with RO Writer is the bait and switch, inconsistency, blaming the customer, the money on top of money, on top of money that you have to spend to get the next feature, and the fact that they offer no trial period, no satisfaction guarantee, and to those of us that purchased the program years ago when that was your only option, you have no right to sell any part of it. It remains their intellectual property.
My rating: 1 (lowest possible).
I understand they’re working on v. 2.0 in Sequel DB but that’s been in the works for years. I can’t hold my breath any longer and we are finally jumping ship and done trying to get something out of my years of effort and 10’s of thousands of dollars spent. You know that its been over a month that I’ve been leaving multiple messages and emails a week with ROW billing and they’ve not gotten back to me. Heading over to Shop-Ware. Looks promising and they have a fantastic crew eager to help and they are active in development and customer correspondence. Check with me after July and I’ll let you know how its working for us.June 23, 2017 at 2:21 pm #26714
This probably won’t work for most shops, but it works super-great for us.
I’ve been a QuickBooks user since 2000. Before that, I had used 2 other SMS that I liked, but using them and then having an accountant was like running 2 sets of books to me. So, in 2000, I started using QB for everything and dropped my accountant.
Long story made short, I became very proficient at QB over the years. There’s nothing that QB can’t do that any other SMS does, except order parts. Estimates, Repair Orders, Inventory, Payroll, CC Processing, Online Banking, etc. It does it all. I can and do reconcile the checking account daily because I haven’t handwritten a check in over a decade; they are all printed and CC are automatically deposited. My checking account balances to the penny on a daily basis.
Some companies we write checks to vendors who have a corporate name DBA another name. QB allows for that with a feature they call “aliases”. On top of all the stock reports the software comes with, I can create my own reports based on my own criteria. I can print a P&L or Balance Sheet at will. We have no need for a SMS.
I can text, E-mail, or print snail mail letters to customers individually or in bulk. I created one report to tell me what types of vehicles and what types of jobs are the most profitable. The list of what you can do with QB is endless. Of course, I’m very computer savvy and a numbers person. Many shop owners are not and have zero interest in doing what I do.
I’m rarely out in the shop or on the front counter. There’s too much for me to do in my upstairs office, especially with marketing. I handle all of the online advertising and social media. I don’t mean to boast, but we’re the highest grossing transmission shop in the Salt Lake City market for a reason.
If you’re up to it, and want to quit paying monthly SMS fees, give QB a try. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
J. Larry Bloodworth, CMATJune 27, 2017 at 4:56 pm #26808
Larry, thanks for your input on QuickBooks. I’ve been using QB’s as a shop management program since 1996 for everything. I keep hearing people say I’m missing out by not having an automotive specific program. I have checked out Mitchell SE Manager and it seems to be very popular w/few complaints but I have gotten so fast w/QB’s, I don’t know that I would save much time with a new program. I also own my QB’s Enterprise Solutions software outright. I also don’t like the idea of have two different software systems for management and accounting. I would like to connect with you to share QB’s Ideas, ie. how to run some reports, etc. I also see you do a lot with marketing, something I am weak on. Please contact me if you will. Masella’s Auto Repair Inc. Venice FL. Jamasella@aol.com.
Thanks, Jim M.
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