By Sally Whitesell-
It’s a great time to be in automotive service. Everyone is busy! Customers finally understand that since new and used car inventory is low, they need to maintain and repair what they have. Yet many shops are not taking this opportunity to provide clients with the best service experience by providing thorough recommendations. Why? Because your advisors are in survival mode.
I get it, many of us are shorthanded and repairs produce great tickets. But this is not the time to shortchange your shop or your clients by failing to advise every client about preventative maintenance recommendations. I wish I could count the times I have been standing on a drive watching an advisor give a full menu presentation for the first time and the client responds, “Why didn’t you ever tell me about this before?” The answers are: first, the advisor didn’t know how, and second, no one is holding them accountable.
Service managers are slammed these days. Securing and managing staff is incredibly time-consuming. Add to that the meetings and admin duties, and before you know it the drive is left unattended. If this is the case in your store, I can guarantee that thousands of dollars are lost each month because of this lack of accountability. How do we take advantage of this influx of business while still providing our clients with the very best service experience?
Consider hiring a Service Drive Manager.
You may be thinking that you don’t want the payroll cost without the opportunity to generate more sales. Wrong! This person may not be writing up tickets, but by having a designated person to coach, lead, and hold everyone accountable, this Service Drive Manager will generate a lot of income that is currently being left on the table.
In order to understand this position, we first need to understand what it is not. This is NOT an assistant manager that helps with payroll and sits in every management meeting. They will have many duties, but admin is not part of them. He/she must be present on the drive, especially during your peak hours, and visible at all times. You’ve heard the adage, “When the cat’s away the mice will play.” When service advisors have a clear understanding of what is expected of them and know they are being observed, they will perform to a higher standard. Our training clients are always amazed at how their sales increase when we are present. Often, we are just observing advisors after our training session. but once everyone knows what is expected of them, and realizes they are being watched, their performance skyrockets.
Think of this position as a Sales Manager.
Would you even consider not training, inspiring, and monitoring a sales team? A service team is a sales team too, and they need to be motivated, consistently trained and held accountable to processes. They need regular personal and professional reviews based on commodity sales, total sales, customer reviews, and survey results, just to name a few. We have customized job descriptions for shops and dealerships based on their facilities and our training processes. If you would like a free sample, please email Sally@swservicesolutions.com and we will happily help you devise a plan for this position in your store.
Just think about it, isn’t it time that all the money left on your table went into your profits?