Is Your Service Department in the Right Hands?

by Anne Salemo

First of a two-part series on how to determine if you have the right service manager in your dealership.

SHOULD YOU TRUST JUST ANYONE WITH MANAGING THE HIGHEST POTENTIAL PROFIT MARGIN IN YOUR DEALERSHIP?

In Jim Collins’ book, “Good to Great” he speaks to the importance of having the “right person on the bus.” Your service manager has a finite supply of labor that is unrecoverable if not billed. If you do not have the right service manager, you have too much at stake to risk to unqualified hands. An awareness of the qualities that comprise the “MODEL” manager is KEY to developing into one!

Qualities of a Good Service Manager:

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  1. Understands the service department’s impact on operations. Above-average organizational skills are necessary to keep the service department’s efficiency as high as possible.
  2. Embraces technology as a major factor in increasing billable time, whether this means using diagnostic tools,electronic parts catalogs or utilizing the business management system to its fullest.
  3. Has strong mechanical aptitude and product knowledge to aid in anticipating customer’s needs and up-selling.
  4. Trustworthiness. Customers need to trust that what you say they need is really needed.
  5. Ability to lead and manage. Helps employees develop their talents while still accomplishing department goals as a team.
  6. Ability to deal with all types of customers. Recognizing that the shop is the key to customer retention for the entire dealership is invaluable. One bad service experience can push a customer to do business elsewhere. Self-serving managers are not acceptable.

In part two, we will learn more about a Service Manager’s objectives and responsibilities.

Filed under: Service Manager, Best Practice