Pensive At Laptop

Is Reconditioning Software Still Relevant in 2019?

Too much paperworkIf you’re staring at a desk surrounded by sticky notes and stacks of papers, wake up! It’s 2019! It’s no wonder you’re backlogged when you can’t even find the invoice for yesterday’s customer.

But somehow even with all the hours spent on invoices and paperwork after a long workday, many repair business owners and technicians take more comfort in this chaos rather than adopting a new method. The problem with that comfort zone is it’s virtually impossible nowadays to keep track of the repairs, check-in with your customers, and keep the business coming with increasing revenues. It’s frankly, well, not wise for these SMART repair shops to be using out of date methods for managing a business when even the way a technician approaches a car repair has gone through significant changes over the past few years.

Perhaps the fear of change is because many of these programs have often been designed without the mindset of the typical auto repair shop owner and its technicians. They’re often very complex and require specific training.

This is why AMT created a simple yet powerful software solution that eliminates the paperwork and helps make you more profitable. The software comes with all the features you need to be in command and control of your work, from PDR and hail damage estimating to an invoicing system that seamlessly integrates with your accounting software.

When it comes to reconditioning, the top 4 things that a thriving repair operation needs to keep track of are:

  1. Estimating the cost of the service
  2. Managing the front and back-end operations, including overseeing your technicians and making sure everything is running on schedule
  3. Billing and invoicing
  4. Serving your customers well = generating more profit

SMART Repair is all about doing the most effective job in the least amount of time to keep a steady money flow. Sticky notes and dry-erase boards may have worked before. But why be running your shop with limits when you can be limitless? AMT’s Automotive Repair Software manages over $139 Million in monthly repairs and estimates across over 23,000 repairs daily!

Go ahead and schedule your demo today!

Auto Service Drive

Customer Service For Dealerships: Why Your Efficient Dealership Process Is Inefficient

  • Setting Expectations
  • Reducing Customer Upset
  • Service Advisor is Key

If there’s one thing that dealerships have in common, it’s that they are always striving for new and better ways to improve their process. Especially when it comes to working with the customer. However, it seems that the more methods that are developed for a more efficient dealership process, the complete opposite occurs, and you only get frustrated customers. So how do you make sure your efficient dealership process isn’t, well, inefficient? Keep reading to find out.

When a customer makes a service appointment online, they expect it to help in the overall process from start to finish. The last thing they expect is to show up to the dealership to have a long wait and a completely different estimate than what they were given online. This damages trust, which is the biggest thing your dealership needs to establish with customers. Take a look at your online customer appointment process from the customer’s perspective, and make sure it’s setting the right expectations. If a tool that’s designed for customer efficiency is lacking in the “efficient” part, then customers will want to take their business elsewhere.

There is a lot that goes on in a dealership to keep all systems running smoothly. While the service department is fueled to keep the repairs coming and being completed quickly, the customer wants their car serviced at an agreeable cost, also in a quick matter. But the real engine behind both these operations is the Service Advisor. They are the face of the dealership and essentially the person that the customer puts their trust in. In addition, a Service Advisor helps the technicians with any sudden changes & helps them maintain an efficient process front end to back end.

One of the ways that a dealership can improve a customer’s trust is to inform them ahead of time of the potential for additional service requirements. Often, the estimate that an online form gives a customer is calculated assuming a customer has kept up-to-date on all repairs and maintenance for that mileage. This online form doesn’t know if services have been declined in the past or even if the car is past due for an oil change. It’s only when a customer arrives at a dealership and interacts with a service advisor that they experience an up-sell, which can cause a customer to get upset and make them feel they’re getting ripped off. A simple way this can be improved is by having a Service Advisor follow up with customers who made online appointments. They can ask about their last service repairs and other preliminary questions that’ll save everyone time when they arrive at the dealership.

Another way that a Service Advisor can help customer service efficiency is through having a Pre-Authorization process set up to provide both customer expectation and charge authorization. This has been a great way to improve customer efficiency that benefits both the technician and the customer. Also, you should establish effective communication methods to keep the customer informed throughout the process. Find out what is the best way to get ahold of them: their business number, texting their cell, email, etc.

No matter what steps you take to improve the efficiency at your dealership, you must always perform the walk-around. Upsells usually occur during the walk-around, especially when they’re more cosmetic repairs as opposed to collision related repairs. This builds trust with the customer as it shows consistency and thoroughness on the part of the dealership. It doesn’t even need to be more than 90 seconds, but the trust is lasting. If you remember to keep the customer as your priority and integrate some of these customer-focused efficiencies, then your dealership’s service process will significantly improve.

ReconPro Back Office 2.9.2.0

Use new ReconMonitor report ‘Cost by Team / Tech’ to view the cost of repair orders per team and per technician

New Features

  • Report ‘Cost by Team/Tech’ for ReconMonitor

Improvements

  • We have replaced Media Viewer to let users with the Client role and the SalesPerson role view attached files properly

See the details of the new feature here.

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ReconPro mobile app 2.18.5 for iOS devices

Set priority for your clients and select color for priority levels so that team work orders in the mobile app can be highlighted according to these settings

New Features

  • Highlighting team work orders based on the customer’s priority

Improvements

  • Showing or hiding price in ‘Vehicle History Report’ based on the ‘Price Access’ setting of work order types.
  • When you select a part for a price matrix panel in the Conditional Repair mode, the ‘Body’ category is preselected.
  • If the ‘Group services by panel’ option is selected for an entity type, services are sorted according to the order in which they are assigned to vehicle parts.

See the details of the new feature here.

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ReconPro Starter mobile app 3.5.3

Add services to repair orders if some additional work must be done or necessary services were not added initially, edit services in repair orders when you need to change service price, quantity, or other details.

New Features

  • Add services to repair orders
  • Edit services in repair orders
  • Change repair order department
  • Reset the start date of repair order phases and services
  • Resend data to Back Office
  • Allow tracking the status of phases, services, or both

Improvements

  • Saving a single-select answer automatically when users go back to the Questions screen
  • Showing the Actions menu when users tap an inspection, work order, or invoice in the list
  • The space between buttons on the Navigation bar has been increased for better user experience
  • Presetting a part category when selecting or searching for a part in the Conventional Repair mode
  • Showing the name of question and answer below the name of question service

See the details of the new features and improvements here.

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Repair360 mobile app 3.5.3

Resend inspections, work orders, and invoices to the Back Office application manually if they were not sent automatically for some reason

New Features

  • Resend data to Back Office

Improvements

  • Showing the Actions menu when users tap an inspection, work order, or invoice in the list
  • The space between buttons on the Navigation bar has been increased for better user experience

See the details of the new feature here.

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ReconMonitor Back Office 3.4.9

Select one of the found OEM numbers when you add a new part to a repair order or edit an existing part, quickly resolve problems to complete the current phase

New Features

  • Select OEM# for repair order parts
  • Resolve problems to complete current phase

Improvements

  • Showing the “Settings” menu section only to users with the Administrator role

See the details of the new features here.

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Heavy Storm Hail Ice

The Best Hail-Tracking Software For Your PDR Business

We’re a couple of months in hail season with several more to go. But how can you track the hail before it hits, so you’re ahead of the game? Surely, any weather app can provide you with enough comprehensive data to track hailstorms. But what if there was a way for an app to offer you instant storm reports, provide storm history on a location, and much more? The following are among the best hail-tracking software for your PDR business.

 

Hailstrike

An exclusive feature of Hailstrike is it lets you choose up to 2 states to get instant hail, wind, and tornado alerts from the best data available. An example of where this data would be coming from is NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). Another incredible feature of Hailstrike is coming with a Historical Storm Search feature, where you can find every storm that hit a location since 2011. This in-depth analysis will help hail chasers determine if an area would be a good location for business.

Price: The Premium package is $189 a month, while the Ultimate package is $249 a month.

 

Interactive Hail Maps

Similar to Hailstrike, the Interactive Hail Maps software provides you unlimited access to over 5 years of hail history. You can also have unlimited hail impact reports and connect the software to as many devices as you’d like. The Impact Explorer (part of the software) allows you to view the hail affected areas and provides on-the-ground data via NOAA. That way, you know exactly where to go instead of relying on a radar giving you the data.

Price: One state is $749 annually, Three States is $1099, and Nationwide is $1499.  

 

Hailtrace

One of the most significant features of Hailtrace is Client Management Tools. The software will help you manage your PDR clients and provide the necessary tools to know when hail will hit a location. Hailtrace is all about helping you in any way that they can, which is why they’re available with 24/7 “out-of-the-box support.” You can also manage your employees by assigning them different tasks and remind them through the iOS app. They have over 5,000 active users and growing each day.

Price: Call for price inquiry 1-(855)-334-HAIL

 

Map Forensics

Quite possibly the biggest seller for Map Forensics is its SAMS integrated software. SAMS is short for Storm Activity Monitoring System. It is a customer-focused system that helps you identify customers based on their exact location needing your services. SAMS can also provide the history of hail for a specific location in a matter of seconds. Map Forensics also gives 24/7 monitoring of over 2,500 locations with more available, if desired, and you received unlimited hail swaths for one state.

Price: $999 annually for one state. Additional states are available.

 

As we are approaching the halfway mark for hail season, we encourage you to ask around to other pros and see what their favorite storm tracking software is and why. They can offer their first-hand experience using the different apps and you may see that what they enjoyed wouldn’t necessarily work for your business.

Do keep in mind as you’re selecting the best hail tracking software, you’ll want to see what the geographical needs of your techs are as some of these apps offer limited locations. Of course, we hope you’ll be using ReconPro™ to manage your PDR business, regardless of how you chase hail this season. Time is money and we are ready to help you with your mobile business, every step of the way.

 

ReconPro is a trademark of Automobile Technologies, Inc. Other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

ReconPro Back Office 2.9.1.0

Make sure that a repair order department, which has been set manually, will not be automatically overridden by the department assigned to a phase which the repair order moves to

New Features

  • Prevent overriding repair order department

Improvements

  • Showing damage size and severity for price matrix panels on inspection printouts
  • Enhancements in the ‘Technicians’ view of Invoice Editor
  • Showing or hiding price in ‘Vehicle History Report’ based on the ‘Price Access’ setting of work order types.

Fixed Issues

  • The ‘Show Service Question Forms’ option was not working properly for Print Template Configurations.
  • The ‘Repair Cycle Time’ report was trimmed on the right in the PDF format output.

See the details of the new feature here.

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ReconMonitor Back Office 3.4.85

Specify a default technician for client services, and these services will be automatically assigned to the default technician in inspections and work orders created for this client

New Features

  • Assign default technician to client services
  • Specify phone number for a device license
  • Allow tracking the status of phases, services, or both

Improvements

  • Showing status icons in the Parts Management dashboard
  • Performance of the Repair Order page has been improved

See the details of the new features here.

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