9
min read

Streamline Mechanic Work Orders and Workflow with Tekmetric’s Tech Board

Always say yes to customers, even on the busiest days. Tekmetric’s Job Board and Tech Board makes it easy to juggle repairs, keep going, and keep growing your shop.

mechanic holding tablet working on car

Well-written mechanic work orders help technicians stay on task and efficiently move jobs through to completion. With Tekmetric’s Job Board, mechanic work order templates, and Tech Board, you can craft and manage highly detailed work orders, strategically assign work, and track progress all from one intuitive shop management software.

If you're a service advisor, you probably know the ropes of preparing a work order like the back of your hand: you get the technician to perform an inspection, put together an estimate, get approval for the work, and then prompt the techs to complete the work. And if you’ve read our digital vehicle inspection guide, you know that Tekmetric makes drawing up mechanic work orders that much easier. But what happens when it’s time to assign work, and it seems like all the technicians are already stacked with jobs?

Without the right tools, assigning work evenly across your team of technicians can come with a serious learning curve. Fortunately, Tekmetric can simplify work order creation and job distribution, too. Small details and adjustments intentionally designed into our system can make a big difference in how efficiently the work is completed.

Technicians and service advisors, you know the pace and organization of a shop depends on the efficiency of its work order process. If you don’t know what to do, what to use, and how long you have to complete a job, it’s difficult to fix a car and get it back to the customer on time. And as your shop scales to take on more work, the management challenge increases exponentially. So let’s dive into how to streamline mechanic work orders and get more work done without it seeming like, well, work.  

Evenly Distributed Workloads For a More Efficient Workplace

Imagine it’s summer and you come in one sweltering day to a slammed schedule and not enough help. Juggling all that work can be challenging enough with an evenly distributed workload, but when the workload isn’t balanced, work can become downright frustrating.

It can also mean turning away customers.

Ultimately, it’s impossible to sustain and grow a business if keeping up is a struggle and panic sets in when a sudden influx of jobs comes through the shop. Changing up how work orders are drawn up and issued can make a big difference and turn a chaotic workplace into an efficient one.

In a well-balanced workplace, technicians tend to be happier and more efficient at their jobs. The quality of their work goes up, leading to more satisfied customers. Everyone is safer in a well-balanced workplace, too, as they are not constantly required to rush to finish their jobs.

Contrast our example of a garage in chaos with one where each technician knows exactly what tasks are on their plate and how many hours they need to get in, or have left, on a particular job. Now imagine that they also have an easy way to track and communicate their progress to the rest of the team.

With Tekmetric’s work order tools, you can fine-tune your team’s timing and bring order back to your shop.

Generating a Mechanic Work Order on Tekmetric’s Job Board

Exploring the Job Board

Service advisors, get ready to meet your new command center: Tekmetric’s Job Board. The Job Board provides a launching point for creating new work orders and integrates with other aspects of managing mechanic work orders. The Job Board lets you see work order cards under Estimates, Work-In-Progress, and Completed jobs columns. Each job card displayed shows the customer’s name, car description, and estimate.

You can initiate a new work order by clicking “CREATE REPAIR ORDER'' in the upper-right corner of the Job Board. Creating a new repair order will pull up a new repair order form where you can record the details of the new work order. If you’re helping out a customer that has already been in the shop, you can search the customer by name, plate, VIN, email, or phone number to quickly populate their information. If they are a new customer, simply click “ADD NEW CUSTOMER” and gather their information to save into the system.

Inside Tekmetric Mechanic Work Orders

Every new work order starts with an estimate. Service advisors and technicians can collaborate within Tekmetric, leveraging Digital Vehicle Inspections to capture even the most minute details about the vehicle and the reason it's in the shop. Parts and labor time needed can also be documented. If you’re a service advisor, Tekmetric will prompt you to provide details on each job needed for the work order, including labor hours required and a cost-estimate based on what the techs find.

With Tekmetric’s Repair Orders, which function like digital mechanic work order forms, you can say goodbye to the days of guestimates and incomplete work orders. From within the work order, you can send estimates and information to the customer for approval. Once an estimate is approved by the customer, you can begin distributing jobs within a work order to different technicians You’ll also have easy access to car and customer history from each work order.

Tips for writing a useful work order

  1. Be sure to read through the customer’s history and highlight any important details in your notes. In the auto repair world, customer care is just as important as caring for the car itself.
  2. Don’t be afraid to add details to the automotive repair work order template once a job starts. The more information technicians have access to, the better.
  3. Think of the repair order (or digital mechanic work order) as another tool in your toolbox. It’s only useful if you know how to use it. Make sure everyone on your team is trained to use the work order feature.
  4. Write for your audience. If you’re a service advisor, remember that technicians aren’t mind readers, so your shorthand or abbreviations may not make sense to them. The same goes for customers reading your estimates and digital vehicle inspections.

Technicians and Service Advisors—Meet Your New Best Friend: Tekmetric’s Tech Board

If the Job Board is where the work is estimated and tracked, the Tech Board is where the work is divided and completed. Switching to the Tech Board from the Job Board is simple: the icon for Tekmetric’s Tech Board is found directly below the Job Board on the left navigation panel.

Think of the Tech Board as your team’s digital playboard. The Tech Board is a place for everyone to come together and strategize.

If you’re a service advisor or shop foreman, you will act as an account administrator to assign and arrange tasks by job and team member and choose whose accounts to show on the Tech Board at any given time. If you choose to give viewing access to all technicians, your whole team will be able to view all the work assigned across the shop, or you can adjust Tekmetric’s settings to only show each individual their own task list when they login.

Technicians, the Tech Board will let you see exactly what is on your plate at a glance and how many hours you need to put in. It will also show you exactly what jobs to prioritize.

Orienting Workloads with the Tech Board

The Tech Board displays mechanic work order cards divided by columns according to their assignment status. The first column to the left of the interface displays No Tech Assigned jobs, and technicians are represented by separate columns to the right. Each column representing a technician also shows Assigned, Complete, and Incomplete hours, and displays any assigned work order cards. Each card shown on the screen displays information about the customer, the vehicle, and the promised completion date, time, and hours for the work order.

If you’re the service advisor, the wrench in the lower right corner of each card allows you to assign specific jobs within the work order to the technician of your choice. You can assign all of the jobs to one technician or divide the jobs within the work order between multiple techs by clicking the wrench, hovering over individual jobs within the work order, and then clicking on technicians’ names for each job listed.

When you distribute jobs within a work order between multiple technicians, a purple split-arrow icon will appear in the upper left corner of the work order card to indicate multiple technicians are assigned. You can hover over the purple icon to view the names of the technicians assigned to the work order. You can also monitor how many hours a coworker has completed for a specific work order by checking the hours listed at the bottom of each mechanic work order card.

Want to prioritize one job over another? Simply drag and drop the mechanic work order card in question to the top of the column.

The Tech Board integrates seamlessly with the rest of the Tekmetric shop management system as changes made within the Tech Board are automatically reflected across the entire system. Need to make changes to a Repair Order while working from the Tech Board? Just click on the work order card in the Tech Board to open the full repair order.

Tips for Efficiently Distributing Mechanic Work Orders

A poorly balanced workflow introduces unnecessary stress in a workplace. Finding balance with Tekmetric’s Tech Board can help you alleviate stress and streamline the flow of work.

Here are our seven tips for leveraging the Tech Board to create an efficient, well-balanced work environment:

  1. Adjust account settings so that everyone on the team can see who is working what job. This increases transparency and trust and reduces resentment between workers.
  2. Split up jobs within a work order between technicians to provide natural breaks in their day.
  3. Remember that you can always reassign a job or an entire work order. If one technician has a lot of work on their plate, and is nearing a deadline, pull other technicians in to assist by assigning incomplete jobs to any available (or less busy) techs.
  4. Adjust your Tech Board settings to temporarily hide technicians who are on vacation or out sick. This will make seeing who is available to work much easier.
  5. Save time by using the search feature to quickly display who is working on a specific job.
  6. Use the Tech Board in group meetings to strategize and analyze performance.You can also run a variety of reports, from financial to employee to customer and parts reports.

The Tekmetric Difference

Tekmetric’s Tech Board and automotive repair work order templates are designed specifically for the automotive industry and are uniquely suited to help shops stay organized and on task. We are constantly adding new features, too, making life easier for service advisors and technicians like you.

We know your team works hard to get the job done right, and with Tekmetric, you’ll be able to comprehensively document and track mechanic work order details to see repairs through to completion faster than ever, whether you’re logging in from a laptop, tablet, or your phone.

Best of all, our customer service team is always available to help!

Tekmetric Means Teamwork

We know you care about teamwork just as much as we do, and at Tekmetric, we’re committed to helping you strengthen collaboration and efficiency at your shop. We also know how hectic things can get around the shop when mechanic work orders start stacking up, and we want to help.

Get organized and stay that way, even as you grow! As the new hub for information for your shop, Tekmetric can help you reach new goals and problem solve together.

Ready to see our work order magic in action? Schedule a demo today.

Make it happen!