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AYES program cultivates success stories for participating dealers and their student techs

November 18, 2010

The dawn of a new year is a good time to put aside the sales projections and inventory issues for a moment and consider long-term planning, upon which success depends. Of the many issues a dealer faces, one that can fly under radar is the lack of skilled technical labor. Skilled automotive technicians are in short supply. The reasons are many, but suffice it to say that the easiest solution is to "grow your own" qualified technicians. This may sound rather complicated, but I assure you it is not. The program about which I write is called AYES, or Automotive Youth Educational Systems. The AYES program has everything in place for you to obtain the best qualified entry-level students. Their traits: • No bad habits • Eager to learn and earn and please their new employer • Identified automotive service as their career goal • 650 hours of automotive training in high school • Qualified under the nationally recognized automotive training program • Consistent results • 74% retention rate in the industry • Earned the recommendation of their automotive instructors • Rated in the top 10% in their automotive training program • Good driving records You would be hard pressed to advertise for such credentials. We all know what walks in the door from an advertisement; sometimes, frankly, not much. In fact, the typical responder to an advertisement is another repair facility's failure. The bottom line, the AYES program has everything already completed for you. This is a program sponsored and supported by your manufacturer. The best part is what it costs you, or, rather, what it doesn't cost you. Let's examine the cost. The manufacturer bears most of the costs of the AYES program. The manufacturers donate new vehicles, curriculum, tools, instructor training, and advisory support-all to help you to "grow your own" entry-level technicians. Your costs to employ an AYES student are: • $8 an hour during the student's junior summer of high school (full-time if possible, if you have the workload) • $8 an hour during the student's senior year of high school (part-time if possible, if you have the workload) • $8 an hour during the student's senior summer after high school (full- time if possible, if you have the workload) • $724 for a starter tool set program (Snap-on tools). This tool set belongs to you the dealer until the student completes manufacturer's training or until the student completes two years of employment after graduation from high school • Uniform costs, (optional) • Student book hours paid to the mentoring technician As you can see, your costs are incredibly minimal to grow your own technicians. These students obviously start out slow, but over time should be producing 15 to 20 hours or more each week. Below is a breakdown on the cost analysis of hiring an AYES student: Hourly wage ($8.00/hr.) x hours worked/week (40) = $320.00 # of hours sold (15) X labor rate ($85.00) = $1,275.00 Cost of labor paid to mentor technician (15 hrs X $20) = $300.00 Profit made from AYES student = $655.00 Obviously, there are some variables in this equation, but it doesn't take too much to see that the AYES student can easily be profitable for your dealership. What may be incalculable in this equation is the loyalty that is built in the student, not to mention the fact that you are providing and building for your future success. Future success is something that too many of us give little attention. So how do you start this process? Call me at 630-424-6020.