September 22, 2016

The Paperless (and more efficient!) Modern Auto Repair Shop

Any given person in the United States uses up to 749 pounds of paper per year. This adds up to roughly 187 billion pounds for the entire population, making the USA one of the largest consumers of paper. Now, we don’t know how much of that is used by the automotive industry, but that is a lot of paper! Retail, tech, and e-commerce are a few of the industries that have shifted to paperless strategies. So, what’s holding the automotive industry back?

The answer boils down to one factor: trust. The financial sector faced the same scrutiny, but has successfully combated credit card hacking and personal information theft with increased security. Nowadays, it’s barely given a second thought. The nature of signatures is also evolving, with e-signatures now being universally accepted all across the US and protected under federal law (namely under ESIGN Act Sec 106, GPEA sec 1710 of US federal law).

The automotive industry is just beginning to match the pace already set by other industries. With a modern repair shop solution, approvals that in the past had to be given in person or over the phone can now be given electronically. However, the advantages of going mobile transcend signatures and approvals – keeping track of records has never been easier. If a repair shop needs to access a customer estimate, all they have to do is open up the app and type in a name. What if the sought after invoice gets buried under emails, you say? It’s as simple as remotely requesting another copy. Digital information never gets lost or deteriorates as it would with a paper copy – chalk up another win for going paperless.

Did you know that a typical shop will experience an estimated cost of $2,700 a year for roughly 3,600 invoices? That’s 3,600 invoices to file, staple, manage, and look through. Going mobile allows for quick searches and easy access. Cost efficient, check! Practical, check! As AT&T put it: “your phone is with you 9 to 5 to 9.” Using a device that enables instant access saves a whole lot of upkeep and hassle. Doesn’t it seem alien that an industry that modernized a century ago is dependent on practices of the past? It’s time to stop playing catch up and revolutionize once more.

Josh Burwick, Director of Sales