Shop of the Week is a weekly column devoted to showcasing the efforts of automotive shops and their teams across Canada. Want your shop to have a turn in the spotlight? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org!
Name(s): Jeremy Bovaird and Jennifer Hebert Shop name: Jers’ Garage Location: Peterborough, Ont. Number of employees: None When did you open your shop? August 2016 Do you specialize in anything? General repairs Main parts supplier: CarQuest Peterborough
What has been your biggest challenge as a shop this year?
JH: Our biggest challenge this year was that Jer had to work the shop on his own since March 2020. Our client base has grown significantly since our meager beginnings, so we had to ensure our scheduling was a little more streamlined. We had to ensure that all stockable items were maintained seamlessly. We replaced a 6K lbs. mid-rise lift with a 10K lbs. twin–post lift to ensure more flexibility in regards to repairs, and in turn smoothen out spikes in productivity.
We also divided our small office space to erect a wall featuring a lockable pocket door, Plexiglas window, courtesy shelf, a simple hands-free two-way intercom, and a wireless indoor doorbell, which is appropriately called “The Jer Bell”.
What’s your biggest success story this year?
JH: We shattered our monthly sales record in November 2020.
How has COVID-19 impacted your business?
JH: Our sales are down eight per cent, although our profits fared better and are down five per cent.
What kinds of digital technology are you currently using/implementing?
JH: We’re currently using a POS terminal, Shopkey Pro Shop Management and Repair Database, our Facebook Business page, and QuickBooks.
If you could see one change in the aftermarket, what would it be?
JH: In my opinion the aftermarket is still having an issue with parts quality, and quality control. Mainly in the chosen materials aspect.
Tell me an interesting fact about your shop?
JH: We are one of the few “one man show” repair facilities still operating with this type of business model. When anyone calls or visits our shop, they always get to speak with Jer. This type of regular interaction provides for a more personal feeling towards the services we offer. We generally say that we have no customers, only clients, and our clients quickly become trusting friends. This provides the foundation to naturally form an extended family. We support our community through charity contributions to our local chapter of Easter Seals and Kawartha Food Share/Food Bank and we support our youth soccer league by sponsoring a team.
Name a part/product you and your team are particularly enjoying this month and why?
JH: Give Mother’s Aluminum and Mag Wheel Polish a try on a set of clouded over headlamp lenses. It’s a wipe-on, wipe-off application with a paper towel applicator, you will be utterly amazed!