Here’s what our Co-Founder Sunil Patel had to say on Ratchet+Wrench Radio about how Tekmetric is changing the auto repair shop game.
Co-CEO and Co-Founder of Tekmetric Sunil Patel joined Editor Chris Jones on Ratchet+Wrench Radio to talk about how shop management software suites are changing the landscape of the auto repair industry, especially when it comes to building relationships and communicating effectively.
Sunil also touched on the history of some of Tekmetric’s relationships and how Tekmetric makes sure the voices of shop owners are heard.
Listen here, or catch some of the highlights below.
Note: some of the following answers have been condensed for clarity and brevity.
Relationship-Building 101: Laying Down a Solid Foundation
Jones: The last time we saw each other was at WorldPac STX in Orlando. And that’s where you guys announced a partnership with Advance Auto Parts. I know a lot of our readers have seen it, but can you share a little bit about the details with our audience, just from your own words and perspective?
Patel: So we’ve had a great relationship with Advance Auto Parts for a very long time. And we wanted to leverage the relationship to try to get more shops to use Tekmetric, and it just happened to be the right place, right time.
Jones: That’s kind of cool to see how the relationship evolved over the years.
Patel: It’s a big company. It’s not like turning a speedboat, it’s like turning a steamship. Sometimes it just takes time to let some of these relationships play out. It affects so many people. We have to be absolutely sure of how this is going to play out, and how it’s going to work.
Using Shop Management Software to Get Everyone on the Same Page
Jones: So let’s talk about shop ownership a little bit. You were once a shop owner kind of in the Dark Ages before we had these robust shop management software suites. What was it like for you to operate on these limited tools?
Patel: You know, it was tough. Customers didn't always respond back, and we would always have to follow up with a phone call. There was always a disconnect.
We were probably ahead of our time 12 years ago trying to get some of this stuff out. Tekmetric used a combination of manual processes and text messaging. Text messaging was pretty popular back then, but MMS or multimedia messaging or picture messaging was not so popular.
So adding that in the mix with communications and whatnot into one platform has been very paramount to the success of our company because it closes the loop between the vehicle owner, the shop owner, the technician, and the service writer.
It keeps everybody on the same platform and communications thread. That way everybody has full visibility into what's going on with the repair of that vehicle to ensure a timely repair—ultimately making the customer happy.