Jun 27, 2019

Smart Scheduling Challenges A Historical Industry Mindset

Workflow scheduling or job scheduling is traditionally where many collision repair businesses have become unstuck. It is an incredibly difficult talent to master and is as unpredictable as Melbourne weather. As a result of this, BMS’s the world over including WebTRIM have created solutions to ease this process or make this process easier. But what if this process was removed for you altogether?

What I mean by this is, what if instead of trying to make a process that is problematic, more efficient, easier and cleaner, we went back to the drawing board (pun intended) and replaced it altogether?

You would be left with time. Time to focus on building your business up and securing more and more consistent business, rather than spending it handling the business you already have managerially speaking.

Ask around and you’ll find every BMS provider out there telling you they have the best scheduling system, tool, craft or board. In 2019 there are not only a myriad of names and terms for these products but options available, and perhaps this is a good thing.

WebTRIM has observed this and seen fantastic products being adapted, modified and built upon like a proud father watches a son or daughter grow up and inspire others. It’s a good thing, and as a result of more competition in recent times, it has required us to step back, be inspired by our clients, our designers and the directors of change in the industry and rethink the scheduling process.

Is it immovable as everyone has come to accept?

There are few experiences in this life that can make you challenge everything you know, that offer you a completely new perspective to see everything from a different angle. It’s when this happens that you begin to make change.

Experiencing the silence and awe of diving deep under the sea can catalyse this, as can experiencing zero gravity. Everyone is different and unique as are the experiences they will have, so as what we do is our passion, we have realised that this mountain that each production manager or business owner must traverse constantly, in order to balance their time, money, staff, customers, insurance/work providers and shop to get jobs out may not be necessary to traverse at all.

WebTRIM has broken ground in the collision repair industry before with an industry first, to record time and gain data from production staff whilst using barcoding to ‘Scan on’ to jobs. The introduction of this idea and the system to carry it out alleviated so many manual processes that had been deemed necessary in the past. Now there are many BMS providers selling the same concept in Australia competitively today.

Well, WebTRIM is once again revolutionising the collision repair industry by making Workflow Scheduling fully automatic, meaning as far as your production manager is concerned, scheduling is now irrelevant. A relic of the past.

Scheduling still happens and is a valuable and pivotal process required to ensure the success of repair businesses, although the process itself can now be fulfilled completely automatically, giving you your time back.

Some BMS providers claim that Scheduling takes “just minutes” which is simply not true and incredibly misleading. In actual fact, your production manager must have a myriad of information and variable calculation up to date in his or her head before scheduling takes place. This information is required to then best schedule your jobs to your staff - which is the part of the process that can take just minutes. This information pivotal to successful job scheduling includes how many jobs are incoming and specifically when, the size of each job in panel and paint labour, parts and materials. Which of your panel beaters and spray painters can fulfil the job task requirements and at what pace, what specific skills are required on each task, which parts are required and on order and the OEM requirements to fitting them correctly.

Again are the staff you want to allocate the work to actaully qualified to fulfil the task and in what time frame comparably to another.

Then you must be aware of the number of, and location of each working bay, the job tasks that can be completed in each bay or spray booth, will any other incomplete jobs block another in its position causing a bottleneck and the list goes on and on.

You must then factor in the ‘human margin’. The Customer may not bring the vehicle in at the agreed upon time. Your staff may be absent when you need them or require breaks to fulfil the work appropriately, contractors may have double bookings or your parts supplier may have had unexpected delays in delivering parts.

So even if you’re that good and can schedule a day or week or month or more in advance, all it takes is one inconsistency, to throw the time it’s taken you to gather this information and “drag and drop in minutes” your job schedule is now defunct and worthless and you must start over. Alternatively, you can not schedule work to your staff at all and wait for them to approach you. You are then throwing workaround reactively to potentially to incorrect staff, your staff will spend much more of their time idle and will require chasing up and for some, a cracking of the whip. This may work for some, with “work” being a loose term, but the bigger your business and the more dollars and jobs you have incoming, the more this methodology will fall over, and we all want more dollars. To make the most ROI, you need to be best utilising the resources you have.

WebTRIM has all of the information you need and is gathering this data every second of every day; even if you run your shop twenty-four hours per day, WebTRIM is on top of the game. Provided your jobs have a due in and out date and you’ve agreed with your customer on this, WebTRIM will schedule every job to get absolutley all of them completed in the best case priority per job. Even if you incur delays or are short staffed or even have lazy, uncommunicative customers, you’ll never need to reschedule and start over as WebTRIM will do this automatically in real seconds, not misleading minutes or hours.

How do we do it?

It’s called Smart Scheduling by WebTRIM.

Try it and find out. You won’t want to go back.