Inspection Checklists Make an Impression

We all can agree that in today’s competitive business environment, it is more important than ever to make sure we take advantage of opportunities to not only gain and retain customers, but maintain profitability. One tool that is built right into your AutoBiz system is Vehicle Inspections. Using this tool along with Recommended Services can be a huge help in creating a relationship of trust between you and your customers, and equally as important, raise your bottom line.


On the bottom left corner of every workorder that you open, you will see the “Recommended Service” button. When you click this button, a window will pop up that shows the customer, vehicle and workorder number. At the bottom of this window, click the “Vehicle Inspection” button. Here you will see a list of inspection categories and their description as well as a place to enter notes. This list of inspection items is completely customizable as well. From this screen, I can click “Print Mechanic Copy” and have a sheet that I can send my technician out to inspect the vehicle.  To configure this list to your specifications, you can go to Setup Entry>System Settings>Vehicle Inspections. In this screen, you can also choose to automatically print this inspection sheet with your work order, and choose whether to automatically print the completed inspection sheet with the final invoice.

Now, you can have your technician inspect the vehicle and report back to the customer their findings, but some shops are finding success in including their customer in the inspection process. One such shop installed a bench next to the bay where they perform the inspection and call the customer over to watch as the inspection takes place. This is a great tool for several reasons. First, the customer can watch first-hand as their vehicle is gone over. This allows them to see the detail that your shop provides in every inspection and your techs are more likely to conduct a more thorough inspection when they have the customer’s attention locked on their every move. It will also save you the time of tracking down the customer when a problem (or potential problem) is discovered. The customer can be called over to see the problem with their own eyes and have the issue explained to them in detail.

When the technician brings back the completed inspection form, the appropriate notes can be entered on the AutoBiz Vehicle Inspection screen.  On the left side of this screen, you will see a column of green boxes. Click each one where indicated to correspond with the technician’s entry of “Good”, “OK” or “Bad”. Now click “Save” and notice what happens next. You now have a list of Recommended Services that can now be edited (in the same way that you would create a work order) and presented to your customer, possibly resulting in more money being spent on needed repairs than they anticipated. With your tech’s explanation of why these repairs are necessary to extend the life of their vehicle, they will be more likely to agree with these additions to the workorder.

Once the Recommended Services are either accepted or declined by the customer, you can click the corresponding “Accept”, “Decline” or “Ignore” button next to the service, and choose whether you want to email the customer a reminder at that time. Now, click “Add Accepted and Declined Services to Workorder” and two things will happen. First, all newly added items will be placed on the workorder and added to the total of the workorder. Secondly, a message stating which services were declined is also printed on the workorder. This is good because not only will the customer have a reminder of the work that they didn’t want to have done, but you have the protection of having a record of your repair recommendation in writing. Another nice thing is that unless you specifically delete the declined recommended services from the list, they will stay with the vehicle. The next time that the customer brings in the vehicle for service and a new workorder is opened, the Recommended Services button will be red in color, letting you know that there is potentially more repair work that you can do on this vehicle. You can also see available Recommended Services on the Sales Entry screen by selecting the customer and vehicle, followed by clicking the “History” button. On the bottom half of the screen you will see any Recommended Services pertaining to this vehicle.

As you can see, including your customer in the care and maintenance of their vehicle can both aid in building a bond of trust between you, and help to increase your shop’s profitability. If you want assistance in setting up Recommended Services or customizing your Vehicle Inspection checklist, please give our support staff a call and we’ll be happy to help you with the setup process.

Adam Irby