Fuller shares repair tips

From quality tools to KPIs, consultant spells out good management practices
Friday, May 23, 2014

WASHINGTON – A few basic fixes—like billing for all labor performed—can solve some common repair shop issues. 

Providers should have their technicians document all work done during a repair, says Dick Fuller, president of Fuller Consulting.

“Some self-edit and don’t include stuff they don’t think you’ll get paid for,” Fuller told attendees of the National CRT Leadership & Advocacy Conference. 

Labor guides can help keep track of the work done and the time that should be billed with the claim, Fuller said. 

It’s also important to track how many service calls and how many days it takes to complete a job and to use key performance indicators to measure productivity and determine the percentage of technician hours that are billed, Fuller said.

Good management can keep the shop productive and the techs happy, Fuller said. Start with an evaluation to figure out how the repair department is doing. Common problems include frequent interruptions, sloppy scheduling and reliance on the TLAR method (that looks about right), he said.

Other advice:

• Provide high quality tools, lifts and lights in a clean, orderly shop;

• Hire a tech adviser to field repair calls, gather data and triage; and

• Use key performance indicators.

Repairs aren’t all about volume. Comparing the wheelchair shop to the car shop, Fuller cited the work of business writer Mitch Schneider, who wrote that higher car counts lead to lower productivity and more missed service work.

“The key is doing more work on the cars you’re working on,” said Fuller.