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Increase efficiency and reduce your costs by measuring your auto repair shop processes!

As business coaches for auto repair shop owners, we have seen so many shops ignore one crucial aspect. That is measuring their processes. Precision helps shop owners find issues and reduce costs. The bottom line is that measuring systems improves your efficiency. This article stresses gauging your auto repair systems, so let’s dive in!

Introduction: Insights Into Efficiency

Running an auto repair shop comes with its own set of unique challenges. From handling customer expectations to making complex repairs, there is a lot on a shop owner’s plate. However, many shop owners do not know the power of gauging the steps they must take for each and every repair. You can gain many big insights into what you do when you do so. Then, you can make crucial data driven choices by tracking and studying your key metrics.

The Importance of Measuring Your Auto Repair Processes

Listing Your Shop’s Own Issues

When you measure your auto repair systems, it will shine a light on shortfalls that cost your shop both time and money. Pinpoint the areas of improvement by tracking metrics such as cycle time and first-time fix rate. Do certain repair jobs always take longer than expected? That may show a need for either more training or a better workflow.

Reducing Your Costs

Cost control is a top priority for any business owner. This is true, regardless of what industry they happen to work in. Auto repair shops are no exception to this rule. When you measure out your automotive repair processes, it will help you to identify the ways you can save money. Analyze such metrics as your technician yield and your parts usage. Those could uncover many expenses you need to reduce, all without losing quality. This can then lead your shop to big time savings over the long haul.

Improving Efficiency

Efficiency is a vital component to running a successful auto repair shop. Measuring each process will help you identify your holdups and simplify your day to day operations. By tracking the metrics related to workflow and resource usage, you can adjust them in order to optimize your efficiency. This will lead you to both faster turnaround times and increased customer satisfaction. Not to mention you will see higher profits!

Implementing a Measurement System to Increase Efficiency

When you install a measurement system for your auto repair processes, it will require both careful planning and precise execution. Follow the four steps below:

Define What Your Goals Are

Start by clearly stating what your auto shop’s business goals are. What specific outcomes do you want to achieve in the future? Some examples could include reducing your cycle time by 20%, or perhaps increasing the first-time fix rate to 90%. Be sure that you define clear, specific goals so you can guide your measurement efforts.

Select Appropriate Metrics

Choose the metrics that will both align with your goals and provide the right insights. Consider critical metrics such as cycle time, first time fix rate, mechanic output, and customer happiness. Tailor each of the metrics to your shop’s unique needs and goals.

Collecting and Analyzing Data

Establish a way in which you can both collect and analyze your chosen metrics’ data. You may need to use a niche software, but old fashioned manual tracking methods could work just as well. Ensure that the data collection process is accurate and consistent, as well as reliable.

Taking Action

Collecting data is only valuable if you take action based on it. Regularly review the data and note any problem areas you observe. Work with your team to write action plans and make the needed changes. This will help you address shortfalls and improve every aspect of your business.

Benefits of Measuring Auto Repair Processes

There are so many perks that result from gauging your auto repair processes. Here are just a few of the rewards you can expect:

Identifying What’s Blocking Your Efficiency

When you measure your repair actions, you can identify any of the bottlenecks that might hinder your workflow. Does a specific repair task take way too long? Do you have far too few resources in house? Then, you need to address these shortfalls for the highest efficiency.

Streamlining Your Daily Operations

Measure your auto repair methods in order to simplify tasks. This eliminates steps that are both needless and redundant. Optimizing workflow, resources, and communication helps your shop’s efficiency. This will reduce both errors and delays.

Enhancing Your Customers’ Experiences

An efficient repair process creates a better customer experience. Exceed your customers’ trust and foster loyalty by reducing their repair times. Increasing first-time fix rates and offering the best service also help your reputation. Satisfied customers are more likely to both return and recommend your shop to others.

Conclusion: Gauging Processes For Efficiency

Measuring your auto repair processes can both reduce your costs and improve your efficiency. When you track key metrics, find problem areas, and make data driven changes, you can streamline tasks and provide a better customer service experience. Do not count out the impact measurement can have on your overall success.

You Net Results

Contact You Net Results today, so we can begin the process. Book your own free consultation. Brian Gillis and our team will help you to start your shop’s leadership foundation. Our vast network of auto repair shops all work together to build up the industry. Let’s make this month the best month of your whole business life!

piggy bank showing your ability to save money in a tough economy and increase car countEconomic scares affect every industry, even relatively recession proof businesses like auto repair. The main goal of every auto repair shop is to maintain or increase car count. How can you do that though when times are tough? Customers in dire financial straits tend to put off auto repair maintenance in lieu of other expenses. In this article, I share my top tips to increase car count, even when the times are tough.

Want To Increase Car Count? Let’s Examine the Challenges Involved

Before diving into the tips, we must understand the challenges that auto repair shop owners may face in a down economy. When people feel the pinch, they often cut back on nonessential expenses. This may include both car repairs and scheduled maintenance. Additionally, competition can be fierce in the auto repair industry. Standing out and attracting customers can be difficult.

Tips To Increase Car Count

Here are some places where you can start to increase car count in a struggling economy:

Price vs. Value

In a tough economy, most people are more price sensitive than ever before. That is why offering a value first approach to your sales efforts is key. Your marketing and sales team wants to help customers understand your service’s value.

People try to save more money in a struggling economy. Is it really saving money when you put off your vehicle maintenance for another day, though? Sell the future value of what your maintenance brings. In reality, you can help people avoid costly future repairs when times might be even worse.

Consider offering specials or promotions to entice new customers. Just make sure that you still make a profit. Dive deep into your copywriting. If you need help, then try AI for inspiration!

Focus on Customer Service To Increase Car Count

Providing exceptional customer service is the most effective way to attract and retain customers. Make sure that your team is friendly, knowledgeable, and helpful. Train your staff to go above and beyond in addressing customer concerns, while ensuring your shop is clean and inviting.

Leverage Social Media

Social media is one of the most effective tools for reaching new customers, as well as keeping your existing customers engaged. Having a Facebook page for your business is a no brainer. It is so important to regularly post updates, promotions, and helpful tips. Encourage your customers to follow you on social media and to leave reviews on your page.

Utilize Google My Business and start a review campaign. Contact previous customers and then ask them to share their experiences with your shop. The more reviews you have, the higher you will rank in Google’s SERPs.

Offer Financing Options

Many people hesitate to repair their cars because of the cost. When you offer financing options, it can help alleviate this concern, making it easier for customers to get their repairs. Consider partnering with a financing company in order to offer your customers payment plans or other financing options. It’s all about lowering the barriers to entry, thus helping more people trickle into your shop.

Expand Your Auto Repair Services

Offering a more comprehensive range of services can both attract new customers and increase revenue. Consider expanding your services to include additional repairs, maintenance, or other offerings, such as car washes or detailing services.

Focus on Efficiency

Efficiency is so critical in the auto repair industry, especially in a down economy. Train your team to work efficiently and effectively in order to reduce repair times and increase productivity. This can help you serve more customers to increase car count and revenue.

Build Your Relationships with Local Businesses

Networking and building relationships with other businesses in your community also helps to attract new customers. Consider partnering with local dealerships, car rental agencies, or other companies outside your industry that can refer customers to your shop.

Increase Car Count By Using Email Marketing

Email marketing is a surefire method to stay in touch with your existing customers and keep them engaged. Consider sending regular newsletters or promotions to your email list to encourage repeat business. Mailchimp and other companies offer free tiers, so you can test out their services.

Focus on Branding

Branding is important to any industry. It can be especially important in auto repair. Ensure that your shop has a strong brand that stands out from your competitors. Create a logo, tagline, and other memorable branding elements that will help build brand recognition. What if nobody in your company has a knack for these tasks? Outsource them to a qualified graphic designer or marketing agency in your area.

Offer Free Inspections or Diagnostics

Free inspections or diagnostics may help attract new customers. This may encourage them to bring their cars in for repairs. This can also help you identify additional repairs that need to be done. This is a straightforward method to increase your revenue.

Join You Net Results and Increase Your Car Count Today

Increasing your auto repair shop’s car count in a struggling economy is challenging. By focusing on customer service, value-based sales, and leveraging social media, business owners can attract and retain customers. By using these strategies, we can stay competitive in a tough economy and keep growing their businesses.

Contact You Net Results today in order to begin the process. Book a complimentary consultation. Brian Gillis and his team will help you build your leadership foundation. Plug into a vast network of auto repair shops. We all work together to strengthen the industry! Let’s make May the best month of your business life!

Daily Operations Process

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SOP Formation and Review

WOIT Discussion and Notes Formation and Review

Answering Incoming Calls is your Lifeblood

  • Grow your car count
  • By capturing the car
  • Phone skills revisited
  • SOP Answering Incoming Phone Calls #0518

Downloads

Powerpoint PDF

How SOPs - standard operating procedures - can transform your auto repair shop

Photo by Tetiana SHYSHKINA on Unsplash

Document & Implement, The Power Of SOPs

Have you ever walked through your business and noticed people performing the same task in five different ways? You aren’t sure which one is the fastest, but you are sure that you would prefer everyone do it one defined way. At least then, you can measure what is wrong and decide how to improve. That is where SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) come in, and they only get better from there!

While SOPs may seem like a lot of work to create, they will save you time and money in the long run. By having SOPs in place, you can train new employees more quickly and easily. Making it easier to monitor employee progress, measure tasks, and improve company culture. Most importantly, SOPs can help you net more revenue!

What are SOPs?

SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) are simply detailed instructions on how to perform a task. They vary widely! SOPs can be as simple as a one-page document or complex manuals that are hundreds of pages long.

When composing SOPs, and when considering how standard operating procedures can transform your auto repair shop. Keep in mind that they should be clear and concise. So that anyone who reads them can understand and follow the instructions. Standard operating procedures should also be specific enough to complete a task thoroughly but digestible and actionable.

As old as time, SOPs are nothing new. In fact, they have been around for centuries in one form or another. The military has used SOPs for millennia to ensure that their soldiers are efficient and effective on the battlefield. SOPs were first formalized in the industry during the early days of the automobile assembly line. The auto repair industry developed SOPs to ensure that each car was built the same way, with the same high level of quality.

Should I use SOPs in my auto repair shop?

Today, SOPs are used in businesses of all types and sizes, from small mom-and-pop shops to large multinational corporations. SOPs provide a process or set of steps to complete a task so that employees perform the same way every time. This consistency saves time and helps to ensure quality and avoid mistakes. You can use them in any industry, but they are especially helpful in service-based businesses, such as auto repair.

With the incredibly complex nature of auto repair tasks and workflows, it is essential that you take steps to standardize things. This will not only help reduce confusion and improve efficiency, but it will help you get new employees up to speed faster!

Business coaching Through You Net Results

We know this process is daunting, and that is why you have us at You Net Results. We guide you through the process with detailed templates and instructions. We’ve helped countless auto repair shops do the same, netting greater returns as a result. 

Contact You Net-Results today for a complimentary consultation. Brian Gillis & team will help you build your SOPs and plug you into a vast network of auto repair shops, working together to make the industry stronger! Let’s make August the best month of your business life!

Daily Operations Process

video
play-sharp-fill

SOP Formation and Review

WOIT Discussion and Notes Formation and Review

  Answering Incoming Calls is your Lifeblood… Review

  • Grow your car count
  • By capturing the car
  • Phone skills revisited
  • SOP Answering Incoming Phone Calls #0518

Downloads

Powerpoint PDF

Everyone wants to increase their Auto Repair Car Count. But what about making every car count more? This supersized session from our Advisor Results Academy webinar features Automotive Shop Owners and Service Writers alike sharing how they get the MOST out of each automotive repair order ticket! Everybody could learn something from this video, so strap in and get ready to take some notes!

Making Every Car Count More – Tips 1-3

First, Dave mentions his shop’s VIP Cards Program. Brian then shows an example of this in action. A shop he knows sends out personalized gift cards for service to their top spenders. The customer is encouraged to give some of the cards out to friends and family, and keep one for themself. Programs like this generate return business and promote goodwill amongst your customer base.

Brian then segues to a discussion about marketing companies vs Grass Roots Referrals. He noted that, in his experience, companies who promise to hunt down customers for shops rarely help with raising car count. Instead, grass roots referrals from existing companies bring in business hand over fist.

Next, Haylee mentions how much Speed of Service makes a difference. When all of your staff are prompt and working like a well oiled machine, what happens? It establishes a sterling reputation amongst your customer base, and frees up bays for the next job on the docket. Make sure your systems allow for your team to not only do the job right, but quickly as well. If you implement this principle, don’t be shocked if your average repair order doubles!

Brandon then mentions the importance of Expanding Your Knowledge, as well as Offering More Services. When a shop is stuck in a box, only working on certain makes and models or only offering limited services, they hamstring their business potential. A repair shop in this position will never thrive, and likely will not survive long.

Tips 4-6 On How To Make Each Car Count More

Curb Appeal may not be the first factor you consider in increasing car count. Perhaps it should be, though! When people drive by your shop, what do they see? Is the parking lot full of trash? What about the landscaping? Could someone mistake your shop for being out of business, due to weeds surrounding your lot? Is your signage bright and modern, or faded and worn?

Furthermore, if the outside doesn’t scare people off, will the inside? A clean waiting room with comfortable furniture, wi-fi, and fresh, free coffee brewing are the minimums you should consider. Not to mention cleaning the bathrooms regularly! Put yourself in potential customers’ shoes. Consider all of these factors. Would you bring your car to your shop?

Nick suggests that we offer Loaner Vehicles and Shuttles. We’ve heard many customer objections to car services. Needing their car for transportation to work or school is a reason we all hear. We all know what a hassle it can be to bother friends to drive you everywhere when you are out of pocket. Investing in a few loaner vehicles, or providing a shuttle car (with your branding on them of course!) could pay for itself quickly!

Expanded Hours of Operation are a no-brainer. Think how many other enhancements link to this one. More open hours or days ensure your speed of service increases and more bays open up for other cars. This also adds convenience for customers who need repairs, but can’t fit them into their schedules.

Increasing Your Average Repair Order – Tips 7-9

Three diverse mechanics - laser focused on completing their repair jobs. Increased car count and average ticket order.Brandon continues the conversation, bringing up the importance of Community Presence and Involvement. When a repair shop organizes food drives, sponsors a little league team, or donates services to community organizations, everyone wins.

Your automotive business should make an effort to become valuable in your community. This is how you earn trust.

Brian contributes an example of how one of his former shops did this. His plaque denotes the shop’s work with their local Partners for Education, auctioning off their services to help out. Other owners and service advisors discuss how their own community involvement programs help car count.

Aaron stresses the importance of Having All The Tools You Need On Hand. You can’t offer Speed of Service if you don’t have all of the tools on hand to do the job right. Not to mention, you should invest in top quality gear. Remember, you get what you pay for!

Haylee hits a home run with her next tip. Callbacks and Collecting Customer Info are crucial components to boosting car count. By the nature of our business, we must collect phone numbers. Having email addresses helps so much as well. Sending periodic email blasts is a cheap way to let customers know about specials that you’re offering. Even if your client can’t pick up the phone, leaving them a voicemail is a huge opportunity to let them know you’re concerned about their vehicle’s health.

Tips 10-12 For Making More Money From Each Auto Repair

Dave feels that taking on Fleet Accounts is the best car count booster, bar none. You a company a discount on parts and services. Since you will now be servicing guaranteed multiple vehicles, you will make up for that margin quickly.

What about Outside Sales and Networking? Send out some of your service advisors to local businesses. They can let other business owners know about your services. This is a great way for you to score the fleet accounts Dave mentioned.

Finally, we discuss three methods to make each car count more. Offering Vehicle Customizing Work (Jeep Ducking), using Direct Mail Marketing services, and writing customers Personalized Notes all can boost your numbers.

Learn More – Get Your FREE Strategy Session

Interested in making every car count more in your shop? Why not schedule a FREE business strategy session with Brian? You’ve got nothing to lose, so sign up today!

 

 

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Only Two Ways to Increase Sales: SOP 0526

  1. Make Every Car Count
  2. More Cars

Documents

Powerpoint PDF

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Learn this and your car count will GO UP and revenue will GO UP!

Three Types of incoming phone calls:

  1. Oil Change
  2. Price Shopper
  3. Inquiry about services you provide

Other items:

  • Hair Cut Story
  • A true story about a $43,500 ticket
  • Ask, verify and then share location
  • TIE DOWN
  • “I do know the answer…”

Downloads

Front Counter Workshop Booklet – May 2020

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