September/October 2016

Changing a Stubborn Perception

A recent email from a member spurred this particular message. He was concerned that, as an independent repair professional, he has no clout. He told me he lacks confidence in the parts he’s getting and automakers are out to get him. He no longer feels like he’s a valued part of the industry. After discussing […]

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Cardone’s Service Guide is Really a Solution Guide

CARDONE Industries, an ASA corporate member, published its 2016 service dealer guide, “Solutions from the Bench.” It is full of new products and installation-tip videos that the company promises “make technicians’ lives easier.” The guide features a mix of more than 90 new and remanufactured product lines and a video gallery that features five short […]

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Cracking the Codes

In Colorado, two cars with failed (I/M) 240 tests suggest the vehicles’ owners must seek help. In Colorado – and elsewhere, I’m certain – P0442 codes can be counted on to bring cars into our service drives. But in Denver and other heavily populated, pollution-producing areas in the state, we have an additional layer of […]

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Content to Serve

What’s the guiding principle for a successful business? Delaware shop owner Greg Buckley has the answer. Once Greg Buckley, AAM, learns a worthwhile lesson, he never forgets it. Celebrating the 50th anniversary of Buckley’s Auto Care in Wilmington, Del., this year, he credits his company’s longevity and success to the lessons he learned as an […]

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Federal Government Directs Further Air-Bag Recalls

FTC workshop cites need for independent shops to get involved in repairs. In May, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced that it was expanding and accelerating the recall of Takata air-bag inflators. This decision followed the agency’s confirmation of a root cause behind the inflators’ propensity to rupture. […]

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Minimize Your Staffing Snafus

Join the brave new world of hiring and learn how to retain your top technicians. If you’re having trouble finding, hiring and keeping good technicians, you’re not alone. With today’s shortage of qualified techs, the aftermarket-hiring situation has become a whole new ball game. And if you want to hit a home run, you’ve got […]

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Tugging Back at the Big 4’s Pull

Shop owners wrestling with the large MSOs tell how they’re surviving and thriving despite the competition. Almost-weekly announcements of new acquisitions and growth by the “Big 4” collision industry consolidators might seem scary for single-location or smaller multi-shop operations (MSOs). Given the marketing strength, insurer contacts and other potential advantages large MSOs bring to the […]

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Wage & Hour Update

What the increase in the salary test means for the automotive service industry. Two years after the president directed the Department of Labor (DOL) to change the minimum salary for exemption as a “white collar” worker, and over a year after the actual Notice of Proposed Rulemaking was published, DOL finally announced the new minimum […]

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How Savvy Shops Are Staying On Top

Thoughts on the evolution and future of shop management systems. As technology continues to evolve at a rapid pace, automotive shop management software developers in particular are keeping a close eye on trends to identify those that will impact the repair industry long-term. Companies with vision are actively transforming their offerings to facilitate advances that […]

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What would you do?

A new service adviser accepts a third-party check from a used-car dealer, and it bounces … … What would you do? An ASA shop owner writes: “A new customer came in with a vehicle that would not pass emissions. After we performed the diagnostics, we determined that it needed a new catalytic converter at a […]

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Supplier vs. Partner?

Perform this exercise to build your business into muscular financial shape by the end of the year. I’m not trying to be facetious with the title. I want to bring awareness to balance sheet management and its importance to your well being. You should set a cash balance (current account balance) objective for your business […]

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Great Day in the Morning

How one shop eliminated the hassles of ‘getting in the door’ by setting up their jobs in advance. One of the biggest dilemmas I’ve faced, and solved, as a busy small-shop owner was the stress of getting in the door. This means opening the shop, assigning the work and getting the jobs started, while the […]

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