3 C’s to effectively manage and motivate your auto technicians

Welcome to another episode of Service Drive with Don Reed, CEO of DealerPRO Training. Most car dealers and fixed operations managers are familiar with the three ‘C’s of repair orders: condition, cause, and correction, which are necessary to complete an order correctly. However, Reed says that the same three ‘C’s can be used to increase the productivity of your auto technicians.

First, you must determine the condition of your auto technicians. Ask your service manager or director to assess each technician’s skill level based on their training and past experiences. The assessment will accomplish two things:

  1. It will determine if they need additional training.
  2. It will demonstrate whether they are qualified to perform the work that is assigned to them.

Measure each technician’s productivity for the last 90 days to determine if they are performing up to their current skill level. Finally, you need to compare their performance versus departmental standards and goals, explains Reed. 

Most service departments are performing at around 85% shop productivity, but some stores reach as low as 65% productivity. With an industry standard of 120%, set by NADA, you might find that your department is falling short. 

So, what is causing your auto technicians to underperform? The answer is not always easy to uncover. Still, Reed recommends that managers have one-on-one meetings with each technician and ask them why they think their productivity is below the minimum performance standard. Stay open-minded and listen to the answers. From there, you can identify the cause and implement a correction. 

In the case of one auto technician, he said he was underperforming because he only received warranty work and never had the opportunity to get customer-pay work. As soon as he got more customer pay work, Reed says his performance shot up and generated more gross profit for the dealership. 

It all starts with asking this question: If there is one thing I could do for you to make your job more productive and enjoyable, what would it be? 

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