There are many activities that impact the effectiveness of the repair process in an automotive repair operation but are not part of the primary process itself. Regardless of who performs these duties they should be considered support functions. Scheduling, vehicle management and allocation of specialized equipment are areas the can have a significant impact on productivity in automotive repair. Following are areas that support the repair process:
- Appointment and Work Scheduling – Scheduling impacts the entire process flow through the shop. Maximizing resource utilization while minimizing conflict is an activity that can have a profound impact on the success of the entire organization. Scheduling is where interdependencies come to the fore and must be managed for maximum throughput.
- Vehicle Management – Managing customer vehicles so they’re in the right place at the right time is an important support function. Technicians need vehicles to be staged and ready for repair work. Service advisors and managers need vehicles to be staged and ready for quality control or delivery to the customer. Effective vehicle management processes contribute to improved productivity in many areas.
- Specialized Equipment – Specialized or dedicated equipment is shared and care must be taken not to overbook its usage. Technicians are dependent on specialized equipment to complete tasks. Work flow is impacted by the available of specialized resources and the overall productivity of the shop is affected by the management of these resources.