Right: TechMan has been helping workshops streamline their operations D igital tools are absolutely vital in today’s garage business. In the workshop you need online access to work on the latest vehicles, and all trends are heading in this direction. Meanwhile, there are a host of management tools that help owners and managers run the business more smoothly; invoicing, customer relations, and many other aspects of your business can run better with the right tools. Take garage management systems as an example. “TechMan has been helping workshops streamline their operations and become more efficient on the tools with some clever and intuitive software features,” explained Leo Freebairn, TechMan National Sales Manager. “COVID-19 is playing a significant role in pushing garage owners to analyse and dissect where they can squeeze all the juice from their businesses. This means greater technician efficiency, slicker admin processes and more automation where possible. These are all necessities for the modern workshop, and owners need to get the zest that modern methods can offer. “Uncertainty over what a modern GMS can offer is the most common reason for workshops not taking on a garage management system. What was once a simple invoicing instrument has now become a business management tool that allows users to understand what is working and what is failing within the business in real time. Purchasing new diagnostic machines or ramps and tools is a much more straightforward decision for workshop owners as it relates directly to increased turnover capability. However, purchasing a GMS will probably be the most astute investment for any business owner who doesn’t already have one.” Integration Leo continued: “Choosing the right system is key as every requirement is different, although most businesses perform similar operations in terms of fixing cars. Billy West from Beacon Hill Garage in Hindhead wanted to move away from paper jobs cards and service sheets, track how long his techs were spending on jobs and provide extra customer service for his loyal client base with tools like online authorisation and pictures and videos of vehicle defects. Moreover, Billy reported a £100,000 profit increase over just one year, which he put entirely down to the use of TechMan and its ability to increase his visibility on what was happening within the business. “Now heavily invested in the results that can be achieved from making the business more efficient, Billy has helped shape the way for the future by becoming a testbed for TechMan newest feature – the LKQ Euro Car Parts integration. Ordering, pricing and checking stock can now all be done seamlessly from within a job card, making picking up the phone to order parts a thing of the past. One less thing for Billy and his team to worry about in their daily routine.” Leo added: “With technology advancing at alarming rates in every walk of life, workshop owners of all sizes need to embrace the new working ways in which to run a garage. The ‘If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it’ attitude will not work in today’s world. Businesses shouldn’t cling on to old paper-backed diaries or simple invoicing software they purchased a decade ago. You will fall behind if you don’t embrace change.” Impact Commenting on the positive impact of the latest systems, Colin Cottrell, Marketing and Central Operations Director at LKQ Euro Car Parts, said: 34 AFTERMARKET SEPTEMBER 2020 ONLINE TOOLS AND MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS Connected tools, both in thee workshop and in the office are making businesses more efficient, and helping them grow too EFFICIENCY BOOST Below: Bosch ESI[tronic] workshop software campaign