Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F15

FIXED OPS JOURNAL

COVER STORY

SCREEN TIME

Tablets help train store's express advisers, pave way to main shop

A

DAN SHINE

dan.shine@crain.com

little over a year ago, Tucson Subaru
in Arizona began having its express
service advisers use iPads as a way
to speed up the customer intake

process.
But along with checking in customers
quickly and getting them on their way, the
iPads also have helped keep the dealership's
three express advisers on task and following
processes.
"Express advisers are a little more green, so
it prompts them to do the video walk-around
and take the pictures and check the different
things," Service Director Scott Gregg says.
"They have a little checklist on there - they
have to check off wiper blades, tires, things
like that. So it assists them in developing good
habits."
Franchised dealerships across the country
constantly strive to boost customer service
rankings by doing things such as minimizing
wait times and improving communications.
To achieve this, some dealership service
drives will consider embracing the latest
technology by having their service advisers
put down their pencil and scrap of paper and
pick up a computer tablet instead.
But while many service departments know
a tablet could give them an edge in the ever-tightening pursuit of profits, adoption of
the devices is not always smooth. There are
issues with keeping the tablets charged, connectivity shortcomings - new hires not being
properly trained on the devices during the
onboarding process, causing them to abandon the technology - and veteran advisers
who consider tablets not advanced enough.

Part of routine
Gregg, who joined the dealership more than
four years ago, says his team has encountered
a few issues with the iPads, such as difficulty
reading the car's VIN bar code in the shaded
drive, but nothing major.
Charging the five iPads - three for express
and two for the loaner vehicle program -
each night is part of the adviser's routine and
is strictly enforced. There were occasional WiFi issues until the dealership upgraded its service. The iPads are rather intuitive and people
are more tech savvy, Gregg says, so new employees catch on pretty quick.

An express service adviser at
Tucson Subaru uses an iPad
while checking in a vehicle.
DAN SHINE

Since purchasing the iPads for express service, Tucson Subaru has shaved 17 minutes
off the time it took to get a customer written
up, into the shop and the work completed. Express service customers now have their work
completed, on average, in 57 minutes, he says.
For the iPads, Tucson Subaru uses CDK
Drive, Xtime Inspect and AutoLoop's Lane
Pro and Schedule Connect. Gregg monitors
advisers' performance on the iPads daily to
make sure they are using them correctly and
efficiently.
"Otherwise, they want to go back to the old
ways writing notes on a piece of paper, which
is not really faster but in their mind it is for
some reason," he says. "And, you know, they
are a lot more comfortable than they were
with them at first, and usually it's not a problem now to keep them using them. But every
now and then I get, 'Well, it's not charged' or
this or that or the other and I let them know
that's not a good excuse."
Express service adviser Brittney Ottaviano
says she's not necessarily a "fan of technology"
but does like how quick the iPad lets her work.
"I'm able to pull up all their information and
have them confirm it," she says. "Then I do the

walk-around and get a signature. So it's very
quick and makes it easier for [the customer] as
well. They love it; they think it's really cool."

Extra encouragement
Every two weeks, Gregg reviews with his
young advisers their key performance indicators and customer satisfaction scores to discuss areas in which they can improve. There
also are 90-day reviews.
High-performing express advisers are rewarded with spiffs for additional sales and
monthly bonuses based on performance, customer satisfaction and net promoter scores.
"The ultimate goal for each express adviser
is to be able to move to main line eventually,
and they know it will be the top dog that gets
that prize carrot," Gregg says.
To go along with the carrot is a stick - for
those who need more "encouragement" to
use the iPads.
"Once it is explained to them that it is a condition of their employment and that I will be
monitoring their usage, they use them as they
should," he says. "Once they figure out they
actually make their jobs easier, then they really get on board." 

OCTOBER 2020

PAGE 15



Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020

Contents
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - Intro
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F1
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F2
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - Contents
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F4
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F5
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F6
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F7
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F8
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F9
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F10
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F11
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F12
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F13
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F14
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F15
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F16
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F17
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F18
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F19
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F20
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F21
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F22
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F23
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F24
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F25
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F26
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F27
Fixed Ops Journal - October 2020 - F28
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