Let’s talk about auto repair business ethics. Picture this: you are an auto repair service advisor. You present a necessary service to a customer. They tell you that they just can’t afford it right now. Do you let them go without fixing the issue, potentially letting them risk more harm to their vehicle? What about the other issues you haven’t even gotten to writing up for them yet? Automotive Service Writers have a professional obligation to tell customers about needed repairs, just like doctors are obligated to tell patients about illnesses they may not know about.

Service Advisors must apply business ethics to phone calls with customersGroup Discussion on Business Ethics in Auto Repair

In this video, Brian talks with shop owners in our You Net Results group about that obligation. Don’t let your worries about your client’s money troubles get in the way of your ethics. Whether you display integrity or not, the word gets around!

Brian then surveyed the group members on what they defined professional obligation as. Karen said business ethics means treating your customers with respect. It’s the only way to ensure they become repeat customers. Next, Bryce pointed out that auto repair shop owners should ensure that technicians watch their language around customers. Finally, Jared reiterated that we are all obligated as professionals to ensure each client a safe, reliable vehicle.

Each caller provided a correct answer. In conclusion, Brian provided the example that we must report everything wrong with the vehicle. Even if the customer is already hurting financially, we do not have the right to withhold that information from them. In short, that is business ethics.

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Does your auto repair shop lack direction? Perhaps your business plan has stalled out, and you need an experienced automotive industry coach to help you. Then why not schedule a FREE business strategy session with Brian? You’ve got nothing to lose, so sign up today!

Recently, our own Brian Gillis appeared on the Remarkable Results Radio podcast Town Hall Academy. This show features a roundtable discussion amongst automotive industry experts on a single topic. Carm Capriotto and Bob Greenwood discussed all of the ins and outs of labor rates with Brian on this special episode.

Labor Rates podcast discussion

Brian elaborates that shop owners want to look at the end goal result first. Shop owners must first know the true cost of doing business in order to arrive at their labor rate formula. In fact, as Bob states, it is important for you to employ not one, but at least three labor rate formulas. Today’s automotive industry is more diverse than ever. Thus, you need employ different rate formulas for maintenance, diagnostic, and reflash.

Bob then presents the cost per billed hour (CPBH) formula. Every dollar must have a name, and every expense needs to be accounted for in order to know rates that are right for your shop. Finally, you should net 20% of gross sales after paying yourself (first!) and your employees a professional wage.

Brian and Cam reiterated that you are in the labor business! Therefore, you must give special attention to your team’s rates. Bob then gave examples of the three door rates he mentioned earlier. He presented formulas for setting those door rates, which are based on competency rate and/or efficiency of business operation.

After discussing these key stats, Brian discusses the concept of labor matrixes, specifically accurately charging for the time that’s spent. Then, the hosts welcome shop owner Bill Nalu to discuss the emotional aspects that go along with the numbers. Courage, as well as knowing your worth as a technician, are essential.

Subscribe to the Remarkable Results Radio podcast for more valuable auto repair discussion.

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This all may seem complicated, but you can do it! You Net Results is here to help! Why not schedule a FREE business strategy session with Brian? You’ve got nothing to lose, so sign up today!


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