Sometimes people look at a labour rate and think something north of $120 is high. Before we get into everything that is involved in a service experience, we should have a little context. When someone comes to fix your computer or photocopier, they come armed with a screwdriver, show up between 9 and 5 with no actual time commitment, and I defy you to pay less than $200 even if it’s a 10 minute job. Similarly if you have a washing machine issue, or plumbing issue, you’ll be lucky to escape a large bill to replace something as simple as a fuse or a screw.
Our business is complex, and starting from when we answer the phone, transfer you to a service advisor, and book the appointment our commitment has already started. Most of our technicians will have at the very least 1 week per year in offsite training, in addition to a multitude of online training throughout the year. The same goes for our advisors, and service managers. Every dealership has valets to shuttle customers and cars throughout the day, and of course we have wash attendants cleaning your car after services. In addition, we heavily subsidize a fleet of courtesy cars in order to make sure you are mobile as quickly as possible, and with the least amount of interference in your busy schedule.
During the day, our advisors are busy preparing quotes for potential needs, answering calls for new bookings, and proactively communicating with our customers with finish times or additional questions to narrow down a diagnosis. Factor in the sheer square footage of our shop, and clean up area, hundreds of thousands of dollars of special tools for the brand, in addition to the technicians own tools, and you’ll get a feel for the commitment we have to servicing and repairing your car to your satisfaction. Heat, light, power, taxes, and insurance are just some of the extra costs that every business bears, and these things tend to go up every year as do benefits and wages. Manufacturers often set the warranty rate, that they pay us to repair your car, at a number lower than our required rate, but that just becomes part of the franchise. These are some of the reasons behind how we set our labour rate in a competitive industry, and hopefully this helps you have a better understanding of the inherent cost of every hour of labour charged.