We often hear the usual: “I get all my vehicles to repair on Mondays and I deliver them (heaven willing) on Fridays. I’ve been doing this for 20 years, and it works.”
Why change a winning formula? What is the point of receiving and delivering vehicles every day?
The Multiple Benefits
It’s for organizing work at the shop, and the benefits are many.
First, you limit bottlenecks in the production line. You also reduce stress on each department, and therefore on each employee.
This is of significance in this labour shortage where productive employees have a choice. They will certainly prefer working in a structured and organized shop than in one that operates in rushes. Shops that care about retention need to know that well-organized work is a sign of respect for their employees. Not only does it make life nicer at work, but employees are also naturally more productive. So, you optimize your resources without making them work harder. In some cases, employees won’t have to work so hard since there will be no production peaks in their schedule.
Bottlenecks mean that your painter must do the finishing work on Thursdays, which he hates doing, and he’s also less efficient than your finisher anyway. With good work organization, you keep the specialists in place and pay them for what they do best.
Balancing your workload over a week is the critical step that will allow to optimize performance and maximize your shop’s capacity.
This also applies to auto parts management if you are short on space. If you purchase the needed parts and receive them just before the start of repairs, you will save space on your shelves. This is the first step toward a Lean process in the shop.
To answer the initial question of what is the point of receiving and delivering vehicles every day?
It’s about reaching your full potential and getting the real returns you can deliver.
Charles Aubry’s Shepherd’s Pie
Charles Aubry gives an example using a shepherd’s pie:
“If I try to make you eat 50 helpings of shepherd’s pie on Monday, you may not feel very well, suffer, and hardly make it successfully to Thursday when I will also give you lasagna (to illustrate non drivables). But if I try to make you eat 12 helpings a day, suddenly, it’s more acceptable. In the end, you can eat more (60 helpings vs. 50 helpings)”.
Proper Execution of the Process
Ideally, you must know and plan your repair mix (e.g.: small, medium, large repairs) in a chart to make a well-balanced plan for the work week. Then, you need to adjust the plan as you go while remembering to deliver as many vehicles as you receive every day.
The best tool to help you do this is certainly ProgiPlanning which allows you to plan your weeks in terms of repair categories and of load percentage.
Easy Change, so Why Not Make It
In conclusion, this process is one of the easiest things to change in your shop. So, the nagging question is, why don’t we do it?
Is it a lack of trust in appraisers or a fear of running out of work, we would be curious to know? Finding the reason can help you change and adopt a new process.
Author: Alexandre Rocheleau
Collaboration: Charles Aubry
Translation: Sophie Larocque
Editing: Émilie Blanchette