3 BENEFITS OF TRACKING TECHNICIAN WRENCH TIME
The idea of talking to your technical crew about monitoring their daily work and tasks using shop management software probably won’t be the most popular idea in the room, but there are some benefits. Just as GPS started to become accessible and affordable to companies, there were heated debates between veteran drivers and management. But today, it is part of the norm for many fleets.
Technology isn’t slowing down, and organizations are realizing how beneficial it is to get better details on how their operation is running, the shop being no exception.
Technicians work hard, there’s no doubt about it. They keep the fleet running and maintained. They help keep drivers safe by inspecting equipment and helping to prevent future problems, if possible. From their perspective, the thought of tracking everything they do in the shop can give the impression that they aren’t trusted.
But often that isn’t the case. From a supervisor and upper management level, it’s just not possible to do the job well without having good information. And a lot of the data must come from where the wrenches are being turned.
Here are 3 benefits of tracking technician wrench time with a shop management system:
1. IDENTIFY WHAT JOBS TECHNICIANS ARE BEST AT AND USE IT TO YOUR BENEFIT.
Some technicians excel in some aspects of their work, while others might be better at different things. If you weren’t out there on the floor watching them all closely, how would you know? By analyzing job completion times over a period of time, you will start to see that Bob might be more efficient at repair A than Joe. But Joe might be better at another type of repair than Bob. With a busy day in the shop, you certainly don’t want to assign a task to Joe that Bob could get done more efficiently.
2. VALIDATE TRAINING PROGRAMS.
Now that you know what each of your technicians are better at, it brings up another issue. Why aren’t they all performing equally? Organizations can use software to analyze their own policies and training programs. We all know that what seems like big problems can be solved with additional training or communication. Perhaps, they don’t have time to focus on certain tasks because they have too many administrative responsibilities. Or, maybe they are wasting too much time searching for equipment history records. A shop management solution can identify what might be causing some of these inefficiencies and help you validate training initiatives.
3. KNOW IF YOUR WORKLOAD IS BALANCED.
Collective Data’s Shop Module helps determine if shops have a balanced workload. For example, a screenshot of the Collective Data shop management system below shows the “Supervisor View,” a screen that enables supervisors to quickly see the status of all work in the shop and who it’s assigned to. For larger shops, this can become increasingly more important and beneficial.
By quickly looking at a list of tasks, you can see what is currently being worked on, what is completed and needs to be closed, as well as what tasks are still waiting for parts or a technician to begin working on it.
Once you have a better view of the workload balance, additional tasks can be resolved using data to back it up:
- Do we need to bring in more technicians to handle our workload?
- Is our equipment being compromised because we can’t get work done quickly enough, or it gets missed?
- If our technicians are efficient and have more time for work, could we bring in external work to help increase revenue generated from the shop?
These are just some of the ways that fleets can use a shop management software system to improve how they operate, and much of it starts with tracking technician wrench time.