From Wayne Brozek’s perspective, the service manager has the toughest job in the dealership. You’d be hard pressed to find a service manager who disagrees. With the aftermarket business pressured to bring in more revenue as inventory challenges are putting stresses on wholegood sales, the need for a strong service department — and service manager — is more important than ever.

Brozek, who has 30 years of dealership experience and now runs WB Global as an aftermarket consultant and trainer for farm equipment dealers, has identified 19 proven processes that can be implemented at any dealership. He categorizes them as daily, weekly, monthly and annual processes, and all of them are designed with productivity and efficiency in mind to help the service department meet financial goals. The daily and weekly processes follow, and the monthly and annual ones can be found on 


1. Toolbox Meetings 

Brozek says all farm equipment dealerships should be having morning “toolbox meetings,” an informal group meeting to review the day before and the day ahead. He strongly encourages service managers to incorporate stretching exercises into the meeting. The techs may be hesitant at first, but Brozek promises the techs will find the benefit in stretching. 

Service Process At a Glance


1. Toolbox Meetings
2. Post Yesterday’s Numbers
3. Shop Walks
4. Update the Schedule Board
5. Close Work Orders


6. Review WIP
7. Management Meetings
8. Inspect Your Service Vehicles
9. Look Around the Shop


10. Hold Service Manager Accountable for Aged WIP
11. Review Previous Month’s Financials
12. Share Productivity/Efficiency/WB Proficiency Numbers
13. Store Meeting
14. Employee/Tech of the Month Announcement
15. Review Mentorship Program
16. Safety Meetings


17. Safety Dinners for Employees & Spouses
18. Set Budgets
19. Deep Cleaning

“When you stop doing it, the techs will be the first ones to tell you it does really help,” he says. 

With the stretches out of the way, the team should discuss the prior day’s activities. Other topics to cover could be new manufacturer info, like a recall, a pip or special service messages. 

“These quick toolbox meetings are the perfect time to share that information with your technicians. Our technicians are the first ones to complain to us that they know absolutely nothing about anything inside the store. They feel like they never get any information. Well, this is the way you can combat that,” Brozek says. 

2. Post Yesterday’s Productivity/Efficiency Numbers 

Each day, Brozek says service managers should post each technician’s efficiency numbers and the department’s productivity numbers. While some dealers may say they don’t want to create angst within the department, Brozek says posting these numbers helps everyone see where they are at. 

“Let your technicians compete and compare themselves to each other,” he says. 

3. Shop Walks 

Every day at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. the service manager should be out in the shop, walking around and checking on jobs to ensure everything is moving in the right direction. 

“I can’t tell you how many times I myself have experienced and heard other dealerships say, ‘Yes, so and so just turned in a work order, and it’s got 25 hours on it that there’s no way I can collect for it.’” 

If the service manager is doing regular, daily shop walks they can catch those problems before you need to bill the customer. 

“I was just at a dealership the other day, and they had 87 hours on a work order. The service manager had no idea how he was going to get charged out. They didn’t do any shop walks at all,” he says. 

4. Schedule Board

This one can be as simple or high-tech as needed, but Brozek says all dealerships should be using some sort of schedule board in the service department. 

“Some dealerships are using the old magnetic schedule board. Some dealerships are using an electronic version of a schedule board. We really don’t care what you use, but we recommend you use something,” Brozek says. “We’ve started training dealerships on a magnetic board that’s color coded. At a quick glance, anybody who understands the board can walk in the service department and know how busy that service department is instantly.”

5. Closing Work Orders

Close out work orders every day. Then the end of the month is just another day without the stress of catching up on everything, Brozek says. Another way to think of it is if you do your dishes every day, your kitchen stays clean. 

“It’s amazing how many service managers will wait until either the end of the month. Three days before the end of the month, you see this huge spike in work orders being closed because magically the technicians just turned them all in on the 27th day of the month. 

“Aged WIP is not like fine wine. It does not get better with time…”

“Or if you’re paying twice a month, service managers would close tickets right before payday. We need to stop that process. You lose a lot of money by writing stuff off and missing things because everybody’s in a rush to close work orders.”


6. WIP Review

Every week the service manager should review work in process (WIP). In general, WIP is a good thing to have, but Brozek says aged WIP— anything over 30 days old — is bad for the dealership.

“Aged WIP is not like fine wine. It does not get better with time. I’ve seen time and time again, in order to close an aged work order, service managers decrease the value of the ticket,” he says. 

Review WIP every week to ensure work orders are progressing and nothing is getting too old. 

7. Management Meetings

All key managers — sales, parts and service at a minimum — should be meeting once a week. This gives everyone a chance to review how each department is performing and communicate any upcoming issues. 

8. Service Vehicle Inspection

Brozek says service managers should be doing a regular check of all the service vehicles. 

“Sometimes the service manager hasn’t stepped inside one of their trucks in months, and they’re surprised by the condition of the trucks,” Brozek says.

This doesn’t have to be a time-consuming task, but it is something to add to the asset list on a weekly basis. Each week, identify which vehicles you are going to inspect. 

“They start checking them out and say, ‘Heck I didn’t know that truck had bald tires. I didn’t know the left side was dented in and the taillight’s busted.’ Well, no, because you didn’t intentionally go look at it. Make it a purposeful event. Go look at your vehicles,” he says. 

9. Check the Shop

Similar to inspecting the trucks, service managers should be doing a weekly check of the shop. When Brozek visits dealerships for consulting work, he starts off by taking pictures. At the end of the week when he is doing his assessment, they put the pictures up on the screen. 

“The service manager will say, ‘That’s my shop?’ in surprise. We get conditioned. We’ve walked through and around and over this kind of stuff that’s stacking up in our shops, and we don’t even think about it anymore. 

“But our shops are dirty. We need to walk around purposely and look at it through our customer’s eyes.”

Along with the shop, the service manager should be looking at the tool room on a weekly basis as well. 

“Is it organized? If you needed a tool out of that room, could you go find it right away? Is it cataloged? Is it something a technician can find right away?” he says .“Or do you spend 15, 20, 30 minutes a day every day looking for special tools?”


10. Dealer Principle/GM/Location Manager Meeting with Service Managers

Dealer principals, general managers and location managers need to hold their service managers accountable at least once a month to review aged work orders.

“Understand why they're open. It could be supply chain issues. Parts have been an issue lately. So, if it's open and it's legit, fine, I have no problem with it. But as a general manager or location manager, you should know what's going on as well,” Brozek says. 


Click here to watch Wayne Brozek’s full presentation “Metrics Matter — Are You Measuring the Right Numbers to Gauge Service Department Success?” from the 2022 Dealership Minds Summit. This and all the Summit session videos are brought to you courtesy of DeLaval.  

11. Prior Month Financial Review 

Service managers should be reviewing the department’s financials every month, looking for both the positives and negatives on last month’s financial statement. 

“We want to share that positive news and thank those who helped us obtain those good numbers,” Brozek says. “What needs to be improved on your financials? Who do we need to ask for help for things that we need to work on? Maybe it's our technicians, and we need to talk to them.”

Look at warranty recovery rate as well. Brozek says all service managers should know what their warranty recovery rate was for the last month and year-to-date. 

“Those are wonderful tickets to use for training. If we didn't get 100% recovery on a warranty ticket, we should be sharing that at a toolbox meeting with the other technicians saying, ‘Hey, look out for this type of repair because we did this, and it's not covered. We don't want to keep repeating it.’"

12. Share Productivity/Efficiency Numbers with Techs 1-on-1

Share productivity, efficiency and WB proficiency numbers with techs one on one. This is worth setting the time aside for — and it doesn’t have to be a lot of time. Brozek points out that the average service department has 6-7 technicians. If the service manager spends 10 minutes with a technician, once a month, that is only 1 hour out of the entire month. 

“I'm asking you to dedicate an hour of your time out of the month to sit down with your technicians and go through these numbers with them. You'll be surprised. Technicians really do want to give you feedback on why their numbers are either high or low. They appreciate those one-on-one discussions,” he says. 

13. Store Meeting

At least once a month, hold a store meeting. Brozek suggests having the meeting first thing in the morning and provide breakfast for the team. The general manager or location manager, parts manager and service manager talk to all the employees, share good and bad news, and inform the team about any changes. If your dealership has employee of the month or other recognition programs, this is a great time to make those announcements. Monthly store meetings help with communication.

14. Employee/Tech of the Month Announcement 

Brozek says technician incentives or a technician award for high performance can be highly effective. 

“Technicians, a lot of times, feel like they're the most unsung heroes in the department. They feel like they're in the back and they get forgotten about,” he says. “We put together what we called a Crystal Wrench award.”

Each month, the Crystal Wrench winner’s name is added to a drawing. At the end of the year, they pull a name from a hat, and the winner gets a 5-day vacation paid for by the dealership.

“We also give them a nice leather jacket with the dealership and technician's name on it, and the Tech of the Year award. We put that in our company newsletter, share it with all of our employees, put it on the website, and technicians really were proud to have that wrench.”

15. Mentorship Program

Brozek also recommends looking at a mentorship program on a monthly basis. This will help with recruiting and retention. He suggests looking for seasoned technicians who are willing to take on a mentee to groom and grow. Each month review how those pairings are going and get an update on how the mentee is progressing. 

16. Safety Meetings

The department should be holding a safety meeting each month to promote safety inside the service department. 

“We start putting in safety compliance regulations, and a lot of dealership service managers will start complaining about it getting really expensive. It is initially, but what does it cost for one injury? How do you put a price tag on somebody getting injured at your store?” Brozek says.  


17. Safety Dinners

Brozek suggest hosting an annual dinner to reward employees for working safely. The leadership team could prepare the meal and share it with the employee and their families. 

18. Setting Budgets. 

Setting a budget is not a new concept, but involving technicians in the process may be. Ask technicians what they’d like to see the store purchase, explain what it would cost to do so and ask for their ideas about how to pay for it. 

“We may need some increased productivity or to change our labor rate. Involve our technicians in setting those budgets. They have some really good ideas — you'd be surprised,” he says. 

19. Deep Cleaning

Finally, every year the shop should get a thorough deep cleaning. While each day should start and end with a clean bay, the normal course of business gets the shop dirty. It’s the nature of the business. Brozek suggests spending a long weekend deep cleaning the shop. 

“Invite your technicians to come in and clean, power wash walls, change lighting, convert to LEDs, whatever. Paint the floors, paint the special tool rooms. You'd be surprised the pride that generates in your store. The activity itself is a lot of fun for people,” he says.

These 19 processes alone are relatively simple, but used together, they make a difference in the service department and help keep the dealership moving in the right direction.

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