Your Auto Body Shop Needs Automation

There is a disease that is common in many business owners, and you may have it as well. It’s called the “Un-automated Workflow Syndrome.” Symptoms usually appear when your colleague send you a request for a part order approval. This includes continuous worrying and thinking about if you have received an email from him, if you have had the time to approve it yet, on what basis you want to approve or reject the request, how many requests he has sent and his history, why your head is spinning, and how to get rid of that headache. Sounds like a common thing? No need to fret! We have the cure for you.

Processes like ordering parts for your auto body shop can be simplified through the magical concept of automation. At the click of a button, you can track an order without any searching or stress. You will no longer have sticky notes everywhere, missing documents, and a stressed-out you once you see what automation does for your body shop processes.

Eliminate Manual Labor

Management systems offer tools and generate reports that help you automate many of the tasks you do manually. Tax preparation is a big example of one process that a management system can automate. It can integrate with accounting software, so you no longer have to hand your accountant a pile of repair orders and invoices at tax time.

Still using spreadsheets to track business performance? You’re doing it wrong because spreadsheets don’t produce the detailed information that you can use to see how to improve your business. A shop management system helps highlight operation adjustments to create a more successful and efficient shop.

Master the Management System Basics

  • Track Profitability: The systems track where your sales come from and the facility’s probability on each of the sales. Your software has the ability to keep tabs on how profitable a certain percentage of your business is compared to all other sources of business. It’ll help you decide whether to keep a particular DRP agreement or not!
  • Track Tech Productivity: You can track the work performed by a technician each day, helping you understand your shop’s profitability based on labor. Helps with insight into your worker’s performance before review time as well.
  • Order Parts: You are continuously ordering parts, and there’s no better way to quicken the process as well as organize it than by automating it. You can automatically track part discounts, returns, deliveries, and any changes in pricing.
  • Analyze Estimates: Do your various insurance partners long list of different details give you a headache? Get rid of that headache with the proper management system! After the estimate is written and the repair order is opened in the system, the system scans for inaccuracies helping point out any incorrect rates or necessary repairs that weren’t initially in the estimate.

Automate Beyond the Basics

Done with automating your basic tasks? There’s always room for continually searching for ways that your software can improve your processes. Here are some examples:

  • Wireless Technology: Smart phones and tablets can be used to capture photos and videos that improve the estimating and repair ordering processes with digital documentation.
  • Automatic Updates: The systems can send vehicle status updates through email/text messages, helping improve communication with consumers and insurers
  • Process Management and Measurement: The systems allow you to measure business process efficiency as well as the efficiency of your technicians.
  • Digital Documentation: Get rid of the rest of your paperwork big providing consumers digital paperwork through pictures/videos in email, text messages, utilizing your website, memory stick, etc. It saves time, money, and paper! Go paperless with automation.

Lessen the Learning Curve

Management systems that help your automation offer thousands of features, but you need to make sure that you discover and master these. This takes time, but you can easily learn the system by tinkering around with different features and doing your research.

Make sure to receive some training in order to properly use your management system. There are many nuances with the system, and it can take time to understand how to use everything as well as its benefits.

Enforce the Change

  • Implementing a successful system isn’t automatic like the automation of the system itself, but it is something that you need to enforce. You can’t continue to do the things the way you always have and expect benefits, but you need to structure your shop to make the implementation worthwhile.
  • For example, if your automate your part ordering process, employees may still be tempted to pick up the phone and order parts as they always have. This could actually cause you to lose benefits of the system (efficiency, accuracy, improved profitability, etc.).
  • Management systems can lead your auto body shop to automation, but in order for it to be truly effective, you must enforce the change and restructure some parts of your shop. Great change requires… well, change on your part as well!

Want to know about trusted NAPA services that can help your shop automate processes? Check our blog about it here! Feel free to let us know what you thought about this post! As a leader in online marketing, CarCareCONNECT wants to hear from you. Comment below, like, and share. Also, follow us on Facebook and Twitter.


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