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Is this mistake costing your service drive lucrative business? – Michael Roppo

We’re now in the second quarter of the year after a robust and profitable 2021 for many in the industry. Today on Inside Automotive, we’re pleased to welcome Michael Roppo, President and Director of Dealer Fixed-Operations Consulting and Training at Automotive Domain Results, to find out what he’s recommending to his clients to maximize income.

From Roppo’s perspective, customer service is suffering in industries nationwide. Hiring top-tier talent is challenging for businesses at the moment as well. Customer service has to extend beyond simply picking up the phone. Dealership personnel must have the wherewithal to ask customers the right questions, listen to their needs, and deliver on the promises made.

Roppo believes that one of the biggest mistakes he most often sees in the service department is not keeping the customer informed about the status of their vehicle while it’s at the dealership. Test your current processes to ensure your customers are hearing exactly what they to from your service staff.

“It’s your job as a service manager, service director, or parts manager to make sure that you’re building a winning service team,” says Roppo.

It’s crucial for every service department employee to know the game plan and be well-versed in the best practices that dealers expect. So, ask yourself—does my dealership have best practices? If the answer is yes, then find out if your team members know what those practices are and who, specifically, is performing them. This is an opportunity to determine who can successfully lead different processes in the service drive.

Shortages of auto technicians still plague dealerships across the country. Roppo recommends implementing a ‘graduation’ program within the shop. There has to be a system in place where green auto technicians can develop and hone their skills. In order to build up an auto technician right out of school, you have to make it worth their while to stay at the store.

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