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Service advisors are the bridge between your customers and your service department, bringing in new repair orders and new profits. Which means, if they aren’t measuring up, your service department likely isn’t either.

Understanding exactly how to measure their success – and what you can do to improve it – will help your entire service department function more smoothly and (hopefully) at a higher profit margin.

Prepare for the 5 make-or-break moments that can cause service customers to start going elsewhere.

In this article, we’ll break down the five key metrics you should be measuring and give you five pieces of advice to improve your service advisors’ performance across the board.

Key Service Advisor Metrics

Setting benchmarks will help you track who’s performing and who isn’t quite up to par. Ready, set, measure.

  1. Number of Repair Orders Per Advisor vs. Quoted Repairs

A simple but effective metric. Tracking how many repair orders your service advisors are writing every day vs. how many quotes they give to customers will tell you a few different things:

  • How well your service advisors are able to convert quotes to real sales
  • If your sales advisors are writing too many repair orders per day for your service department to keep up
  • If your service advisors are writing too few repair orders, leaving profits on the table and your technicians standing around
  1. Hours Sold Per Repair Order

While not an advisor-only metric, this measurement can help identify if advisors are consistently discounting the price given to customers, cherry-picking orders/appointments, or otherwise mis-handling repair orders. While many measure this by simply dividing billed hours by repair orders, a more accurate measurement looks a little something like this:

HPRO calculation: (labor sales divided by RO count) divided by effective labor rate

  1. Point of Sale Add-Ons

Whether it’s a tire rotation or an oil change, your service advisors should be acting as salespeople AND customer advisors, recommending additional services that could benefit your customers. 

  1. Customer Satisfaction

As a customer-facing employee, it’s critical that your service advisors offer a great customer experience for every vehicle owner. If they are being too pushy or plain rude to customers, you face a substantial risk of a negative review about your service department ending up in the social sphere.

Bonus: Working with a renewable benefits provider like DriveSure makes it easy for your service advisors to surprise and delight customers. Suddenly that simple oil change now comes with the peace of mind of 24/7 roadside assistance, road hazard tire protection, and emergency alternate transportation.

  1. Customer Retention

Even if your customers are perfectly happy, they might end up going elsewhere for their vehicle maintenance. Customer retention has proven to have a direct impact on your bottom line, so if your advisors aren’t focused on retaining EVERY customer it could be time to retain new advisors.

Easy ways to measure how effective your advisors are at customer retention:

  • Number of customers scheduled for their next visit before they leave the shop
  • Number of reminder emails or texts sent to customers who haven’t scheduled an appointment
  • (If using DriveSure or another incentive-based retention program) How clearly advisors communicate the renewable benefits that may come with regularly scheduled maintenance and the timeline for when those benefits expire

Improving Service Advisor Effectiveness

Now that you’ve set a baseline for performance, it’s time to see how your service advisors can improve on their metrics and their overall contribution to your service department.

  1. Continuous Training

Don’t let that first week be the last time your service advisors experience any kind of training. Whether it’s to help improve their sales techniques or bring them up to speed on a new service your offering, your service advisors need to be equipped with the training to do their job…and do it right.

  1. Set Target Goals and Metrics

If you haven’t defined clear goals or quotas that your service advisors should be meeting, chances are they probably aren’t meeting them. Set new benchmarks based on past performance and opportunity for improvement.

  1. Create a Clear Pricing Structure and Rule for Discounts

Letting service advisors choose when and where to apply discounts based on their own discretion is a slippery slope to less profitability. Create pricing guidelines that your service advisors can follow as well as clear instructions for when and if a discount should be applied.

Not only will this make your service advisors lives just a little easier when they need to calculate customer cost, but it will ensure maximum profitability for your department.

  1. Define Service Department Capacity and Open Lines of Communication

If your service advisors and technicians are out of whack, it can spell disaster for the effectiveness and profitability of your department. Ensure all service advisors understand the max capacity per day of the department and that they have an open line of communication with the technicians should anything need to be adjusted.

  1. Implement a Customer Feedback Mechanism

Improving customer service skills can be tricky if your service advisors never have any feedback to work off of. A customer service or feedback mechanism can help your service advisors see where they misstepped so they can avoid it in the future. Options include:

  • Recorded customer service calls
  • Post service customer surveys

More than likely, your service advisors are one of the (if not only) main points of contact for your customers. Measuring and improving their performance means keeping your customers happy and your profits high.

So, ready to start your review?

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Discover the 5 critical moments causing customers to abandon your dealership service department, and how you can overcome them.   

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