All You Should Learn About Becoming an Automotive Service Consultant
When individuals encounter issues with their car, such as warranty problems, mechanical issues, or complete breakdowns, they often turn to either a dealership or an independent garage for servicing. Within the team they encounter, there’s the automotive service consultant who serves as the intermediary between the customer, the dealership or independent repair shop, and the mechanic tasked with repairing their vehicle.
The primary responsibility of the automotive service consultant is to ensure customer satisfaction and address any questions or concerns that may arise. However, this doesn’t mean they have no other duties. From drafting service orders and managing schedules to promoting sales, service advisors remain occupied throughout the day, ensuring the well-being of their customers and the efficient operation of the shop. If you’re intrigued by a career as a service advisor and want to delve deeper, continue reading to discover what a typical day on the job entails. DealerPRO Training goes over what an automotive service consultant is, what a day in their life looks like, their skills, and how to become one.
What is an Automotive Service Consultant?
An automotive service consultant serves as the crucial link connecting the automotive technician responsible for vehicle repairs and the customer who requested those services. These advisors maintain close interactions with customers and facilitate the exchange of information and requirements between the two parties.
What Being an Automotive Service Consultant Looks Like
1. Write Out Service Orders
Beyond customer service, one of the primary responsibilities of a service consultant is crafting service orders. These documents serve as a means to convey a customer’s concerns to the mechanics responsible for repairing their vehicle. This necessitates a deep understanding of the required repairs, prompting service advisors to meticulously record notes using precise repair terminology. This terminology is an integral part of service advisor training to prevent any miscommunication between the advisor and the customer, as well as between the advisor and the assigned mechanic.
2. Assess Customer Needs
To ensure a vehicle receives a thorough assessment and appropriate repairs, a dealership or repair shop should have a dedicated staff member to guide customers through the process, ensuring their perspectives and concerns are acknowledged and addressed.
While customer service is not the sole responsibility, it holds significant importance in the role of a service advisor. A negative customer experience can tarnish the reputation of the entire establishment in the community. Therefore, an automotive service consultant should always be readily available to respond to inquiries, clarify details, and keep customers informed about the dealership’s progress.
In cases where a customer is perplexed by their invoice, the service advisor can provide an explanation of the performed work and its necessity using clear and respectful language that is easily understood. This commitment to customer satisfaction is integral to maintaining a positive reputation.
3. Promote Sales and Schedule Appointments
Usually, customers don’t simply arrive at a dealership expecting immediate admission, assessment, and repairs for their vehicle. This is why automotive service consultants often operate on an appointment system, wherein they schedule appointments for customers to return on a later date when the dealership or repair shop can accommodate them. Service advisors must prioritize organizational skills to manage their appointments effectively, ensuring they neither overbook customers nor overload the mechanics with excessive workloads.
During the period when a customer’s vehicle is undergoing repairs, a service advisor is also responsible for recommending potential upgrades, services, or maintenance procedures that could enhance the overall performance of the vehicle. There are numerous aspects of a car that a customer may not be aware of, offering the service advisor an opportunity not only to discuss potential enhancements but also to educate the customer on how to maintain their vehicle to ensure optimal performance and longevity.
Becoming an Automotive Service Consultant
- Complete Dealership Training
Undergoing an automotive technology program and gaining experience as a technician can equip you with vital automotive expertise essential for the role of an automotive service advisor. This journey involves acquiring knowledge about vehicles, their mechanisms, potential malfunctions, and methods to address common issues. It’s customary for many advisors to begin their careers as automotive technicians to enhance their vehicle-related knowledge and enhance their ability to provide excellent customer service.
2. Get Experience
Numerous automotive service consultants initiate their careers in entry-level technician roles, seeking to build practical experience. Additionally, drawing upon customer service expertise gained from previous positions in retail or other customer-centric domains can prove advantageous, especially given the customer-facing nature of the advisor role. After accumulating experience as an automotive technician, you can pursue opportunities in service advisor positions, allowing you to utilize your skills in the customer service aspect of the industry.
3. Work Your Way Up
Automotive service consultants may find prospects for career progression into management roles. Some advisors progress to become automotive service managers, assuming leadership roles within the entire operation. In the case of large automotive service companies, avenues might exist for diversifying roles, such as transitioning to positions as regional managers or other upper-tier positions.
4. Improve Your Skill Set
In your role as an automotive service consultant, you’ll continuously acquire fresh insights about both vehicles and customers while actively engaging in your profession. As the industry witnesses the introduction of new vehicles, components, and automotive methodologies, you might consider pursuing additional coursework or on-the-job training to expand your knowledge and enhance your skill set. This commitment to ongoing learning will enable you to better cater to the needs of your customers.
Automotive Service Consultant Skills
Automotive service advisors interact with the public, combining industry-specific expertise with essential customer service proficiencies. Here are some typical skills associated with automotive service advisors:
Customer Service Skills
Effective communication, maintaining a professional demeanor, patience, and empathy form the core of a proficient automotive service advisor’s customer service skills. These skills are crucial for addressing customer complaints and resolving misunderstandings.
Automotive service advisors assist customers in comprehending their vehicle needs and necessary repairs. To accomplish this effectively, they must undergo automotive training, enabling them to grasp these concepts and communicate them clearly to customers.
Computer and Software Proficiency
Automotive service consultants frequently use company software for tasks such as creating work orders, generating invoices, scheduling appointments, and more. This necessitates basic computer and software skills, along with attention to detail to ensure accurate parts orders and pricing alignment with customer expectations.
Automotive service consultants operate as part of a collaborative team that includes technicians and fellow advisors. Effective teamwork involves clear communication, adept problem-solving, and the ability to work harmoniously with others to achieve common goals or navigate challenges.
Automotive service consultants may encounter intricate challenges involving customers or vehicles, requiring strong problem-solving skills. They must analyze problems and devise effective solutions that ensure customer satisfaction while serving the business’s interests.
Reach Out to DealerPRO Training for Automotive Service Consultant Training Programs
If you’re thinking about becoming an automotive service consultant or want to get further training for your consulting team, contact us at DealerPRO Training today!