Perhaps we agree to disagree. Or mis-communicate.
This alone may be one of the most important dialogs I have be involved with on this forum and is essential that you get other opinion from our Moderators. This is the apex of customer & shop relationships. Thank-you for following through on this post!
You're 3 sentences are massive in nature.
Bad apple, I refer to those who are not ethical or competent.
(This is such a large and serious subject it is hard to begin.)
Let's deal with why problems happen first.
-Mis-communication- Potential for trouble:
-The customer does not clearly convey the problem.
-The service writer does not listen well enough to convey the customers problem to the tech, or fails to ask the right questions.
-the tech is not given ample time to diagnose, the tech does not have access to the information needed, the information provided is not clear or logical or accurate that leads to unintentional mis-diagnosis
-The engineers that designed the car made mistakes.
-Parts are bad from new.
Complications from the car owner:
-The car maintenance was not performed as it should have been.
-the car owner allowed multiple problems to occur.
-The car owner has taken it to a different place each time.
-the car owner and "BOB the Neighbor" who gives the impression he knows all lot about cars, attempted the repairs. This alone creates a bit of a frankenstein. Parts put on wrong, parts that are bad, parts that don't belong to a vehicle, Things not reattached right, they couldn't figure out how to get it back together.
Customer's barrier to understanding:
- Customers can't comprehend why they are getting charged "to look at a car problem". We need to get to a connector or part that takes 45 minutes to access to help determine what is causing a problem, who should pay for it? Should the tech not get paid to do that? Should the shop pay the tech but not charge the customer, when he could have the tech work on a paying job? Many costs are associated with find a problem such as software, scanners training etc.
-Customer not understanding what is being explained because they are afraid to ask questions. They can be afraid they won't understand, so they shut out what they are being told.
idriveatitliest, I sincerly welcome this discussion and asked other moderators to help show our side of the nightmare of auto repair so you can understand our side.
I don't know that 90% of the owners of businesses want to do a good job or not. Some do care, some don't care. Some are ethical some are not. Same with techs. Good ones have enormous pride that will not collapse to unethical behavior, getting beat without giving their all nor taking a auto repair problem personnel. Both owners and tech get worn out or burnt out from customers as well. It seems that some folks believe they can take their aggressions out on the shop and it's employees. I won't stand for that behavior and wouldn't treat a customer like that.
There are those that are paid on commission that can alter one's judgement. Not all of them. A shop should charge what it needs to stay in business, one has the choice to go elsewhere. A good shop is not typically inexpensive.
There are shops that have a culture of unethical behavior and ones that strive to be pure.
There are just plain bad situations that make a good shop look bad. IT happens. A car comes in to relace the left headlight, and then the right one goes out. IT just choose to fail at a bad time for us, but, we didn't cause it to happen.
I know I haven't answered this well enough, and may post again tommorrow, there are other replies I need to address and it's been a long day already.
Thank-you for continuing this post. :D
Friday, February 9th, 2007 AT 7:20 PM