Every service department uses multi-point inspections in come capacity. It’s preached constantly that MPIs are the linchpin for upselling opportunities. According to one automotive trainer, just a .2 increase per work order in a shop that writes 500 ROs a month will result in around $7,500 in revenue per month, give or take. Selling just one worn-out set of tires could be $1,000 or more and open the door to additional upselling when the wheels are off. That’s the power of an inspection.
So then, why are MPIs skipped over? Is it just that service advisors are tired of pushing for the sale, or is it because there isn’t enough time in the shop to add extra service work?
According to US Sales Director at UVeye, Bob Rich, the reasons that multi-point inspections are left off repair orders are many. “There’s no singular reason, which is why MPI penetration at dealerships is all over the map. It can include factors such as current processes are manual and dealership personnel have a lot of competing demands, current inspection technologies require people to still perform steps to complete the inspection, lack of training, lack of management bandwidth to ensure standards are maintained, a lot of turnover at the service advisor level leads to misses, and even that technicians have a lot on their plate and bay utilization is important – they would rather do ‘big jobs’ instead of little ones.
“For tires specifically, some dealers believe ‘they can't make money in tires’ so the focus isn't there. Lack of inner dealership operating efficiencies - service lane inspections and used car inspections - unless operating processes are efficient, can see multiple people inspect the same car for different reasons, each consuming more time. Current inspection technologies for tires mainly inspect one item. To inspect more aspects of the tires, you need more hardware, and dealers are space constrained.”
From dealership to dealership, excuses are different for missing MPIs on work orders routinely. That makes it extremely hard to identify and fix the issue. What’s almost always the case is it’s a personnel issue.
UVeye’s USA Managing Director, Glenn Hemminger, says, “For both the initial advisor walk-around inspection and the full multi-point inspection performed by the technician, the time required to perform a manual inspection is the biggest factor contributing to missed maintenance and repair needs. Advisors in busy service drives often have just moments to write a new customer up before the next one arrives, and flat-rate technicians earn more income the faster they work, both of which can lead to mechanical and safety issues that are missed or skipped.”
Since the problem is almost always a concern about time for service staff, it makes it tricky to deal with the situation without changing something. But it has to be dealt with, since missed sales opportunities and poor customer experiences are directly tied to missed inspections.
Hemminger remarks, “The problem impacts the dealer in multiple ways, including lost labor and parts revenue that can amount to tens of thousands per month in unrealized profit, lower customer retention as drivers go elsewhere for service, and even lower CSI scores.”
Rather than accepting the unrealized income for the service department, automation could very well be the solution. Computerized processes powered by AI have helped immensely with customer engagement, and they can with vehicle inspections too. That’s where UVeye specializes.
“Automating vehicle inspections with UVeye technology fixes this by reducing the time to inspect the tires and wheels as well as the underbody to under 10 seconds. By the time the customer steps out of their vehicle the advisor is prepared with objective inspection results that detail the condition and automatically highlight areas of concern, leading to added lines on the repair order and additional revenue, and technicians save time as many of the points on the MPI checklist have been pre-inspected.”
If your dealership struggles to attach a completed MPI checklist to each and every work order, it’s time for a change. Automate the process and you’ll see increased revenue, improved customer retention and satisfaction, and it might just lighten the workload on key positions in the service drive too.