Reworks? Who pays?

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  • June 18, 2010 at 12:32 pm #21948

    As the owner of a small body shop I am faced from time to time with completed projects that have to be fixed or redone due to errors of my employees. I realize that sometimes things happen that is really no ones fault. When an error is obviously the fault of the technician (areas not painted, runs, improper masking, etc) who should pay for the labor and materials of the rework. I have been pretty liberal in the past and have covered both labor and materials but now I feel I need to make some type of adjustment in this practice. Should I cover the cost of materials and the technician who made the mistake do the work without compensation? Should the technician be responsible for both? How do other shops handle this situation?

    June 18, 2010 at 6:02 pm #21949

    They were paid to do it right the first time. Tell them that if they do not like re-doing them for free that they need to take more time and do it right the first time. You need to get them to change their attitude and approach towards quality. Show them what you expect and review comebacks with the crew as they come in. You should have a written Standard Operating Procedures Manual which defines industry acceptable procedures. Every member of the crew should read and sign a paper stating that they read and understand it. If something new comes up, review it with the crew & add it to the manual. One man can sink the whole ship. The damage to the shops reputation is harder to repair and will cost you more money than lost labor or materials. Management needs to inspect every car prior to calling the customer to pick it up. If they can not or will not perform quality repairs, get someone who can.

    Brad Larsen

    June 18, 2010 at 7:03 pm #21950

    SOP is important and should be defined. But even still, that wont be enough as much of it
    is common sense. And showing anger wont help either. Rather than taking a thou-shalt-not
    attitude, try dealing with the individuals on a more personal level. See what’s going on
    in their lives. At some early point, they probably woke up eager and took great pride in
    their work but what happened? Hm…

    It is your shop and if your employees are screwing up, then it’s you that’s screwing up.
    It’s your inability to get it all together. Self blame is the game and a better approach
    to reduce – not eliminate – stressors.

    Quick read:

    June 18, 2010 at 11:26 pm #21952

    Right on Han. Guys there are two books that you just have to read if you want to build a successful team. The first is “Self Made in America” by Jon McCormack.
    This book shows you how to turn losers into winners and winners into superstars. A must read for you and your employees..

    The second is “The seven habits of Highly effective people” by Stephen R.Covey.

    This book will teach you how to get yourself and your business organized, by getting rid of the habits that are holding you back and giving you new ones to develop.

    Both of these books work. If you can’t afford them, go to the library and check them out.

    June 19, 2010 at 12:24 am #21953

    Those books are popular!

    Mr. Wooden passed away not too long ago..
    Check out:

    Tony Robins:

    There are MANY more skilled and intelligent speakers on TED.

    June 19, 2010 at 8:01 am #21962

    we don’t none of us start this trade/art all knowing and flawless … we make many mistakes along the way …. my bosses always swallowed the costs … I know when my employees screw up they feel really bad and they beat them selves up worse then anyone over it. This stuff requires some real talent and something I call “the right stuff”. I agree that the owner must bare some responsibility for allowing the OOPS to happen in the first place. If I think one of my workers might screw something up I’m right over there to screw it up myself …. then there’s no question about who’s payin for it B)

    June 19, 2010 at 8:18 am #21963

    Its just the nature of the trade screw ups are made very easily know one’s perfect.. :pcorn:

    June 19, 2010 at 8:19 am #21964

    Its just the nature of the trade screw ups are made very easily know one’s perfect.. :pcorn:

    June 19, 2010 at 2:41 pm #21965

    all that is true. secrew up happen and to be expected but i think there is a point there where attitude and not giving a crap come into play. an employee in this trade needs to be a professional and responsible. if he is a good professional employee and we are talking about the occasional screwup then the shop should take care of that but if its the attitude then he should be paying for the rework at that point or be shown the front door.

    June 19, 2010 at 4:40 pm #21966

    Good point. I have always tried to be pretty understanding and have paid for the screw ups myself. Unfortunately that has led to an attitude of not caring. I am going to have to begin some type accountability for the redos and if that does not work find someone with a better work ethic

    June 19, 2010 at 4:46 pm #21967

    yah .. when my young painter was just green still, he was always having problems …. either dry spray, runs , or just lots of trash. I finally told him one day that appeared to me to be a case of “not giving a ***”. He had surprisingly less trouble after that and is really doing some good work now 😉 I do think, that in some way, the employee should feel the employers pain over screw ups, or they may not learn from thier mistakes :pcorn:

    June 23, 2010 at 3:50 am #22037

    Working in flat rate shops (not as an hourly technician) here is my view:

    [size=4]I am the technician and am given a fair time for the job. If the times are not adequate, this can be discussed during tear down and resolved at that point. I will complete the job to the best of my ability which will, at a minimum, meet industry standards. I have the training/experience/tools to perform the job. If I happen to make a mistake or encounter a problem that is caused by me in some way, I will remedy it at that point…even if it means I am exceeding book time or using some additional shop materials. If the problem is not due to myself, I will consult my supervisor/shop foreman (such as a problem with parts/materials/shop equipment). I expect that as a bodyman, the prepper/painter will NOT accept my work unless they feel it meets standards…as a painter/prepper I expect the bodyman to not accept the paint job unless they feel it meets standards. Also, as a technician I will inspect my work when it is completed and also expect that my supervisor will, to some extent, perform quality control. This should virtually eliminate come-backs.

    In the event that there is a comeback, I will personally guarantee my work. If the problem is due to my workmanship (not materials or another employees workmanship)I will repair my portion only, for free. The shop, in good faith, will cover materials and any other labour involved that I did not perform. I will not cover any repairs due to wear and tear or material failure (rockchips in paint, rust forming on used parts etc…)[/size]

    I take pride in my work and stand behind it 100%. I am very happy to go over the repair with the customer if they would like…I am completely open/honest and try to hide nothing. If I make a mistake, tell me about it and reprimand me if necessary. There may simply be a misunderstanding or something I may not know…maybe there are better methods or products I could try to use. If my speed and quality ever suffer, let me know right away and try to resolve it. If an employee can not commit to this and perform good quality at an adequate pace, and after trying to resolve the issue, the employee cannot improve, then the employee should be terminated.

    June 23, 2010 at 5:04 am #22042

    well said ben, and all true for flat rate, which I don’t at this time condone. (reasons reserved) :kofee

    June 23, 2010 at 7:34 am #22047

    [b]Stone wrote:[/b]
    [quote]well said ben, and all true for flat rate, which I don’t at this time condone. (reasons reserved) :kofee[/quote]

    I think I know what you mean. If I owned a shop I know how I would pay my employees…I don’t think all technicians that work flat rate share the same view point/professional pride as I do.

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