RR 394: What Quality Employees Really Want – Results From a Technician Survey

Tom Ham, with the help of his wife Deb, is the creator and owner of Automotive Management Network a 12,000 plus member website dedicated to the exchange of vehicle service management information. Tom got his start in the auto service industry pumping gas in the late 60’s. Tom and his wife operate Auto Centric, an import specialty shop in Grand Rapids, MI. Tom and Deb have five children including two sons and a daughter who served in the Iraq War as U.S. Marines.  He writes extensively on industry topics.  Discover Tom’s previous episodes HERE.

Key Talking Points:

  • Automotive Management Network releases one new survey every two weeks
    • A great source of information on a variety of subjects.
  • What quality employees want from technician’s perspective – Automotive Management Network
    • Appreciation
      • Are employers saying ‘thank you’ enough?  
      • Tom touches base with every employee every day- either face to face or digitally  
    • Pay
      • 80% of aftermarket is not flat rate: majority pay is bonuses and incentives  
    • Are there enough cars to service
    • Correct Equipment
    • Clean Shop
      • Organized, dry, warm, noise levels etc
  • What are the most common reasons for technicians to be fired from a shop owners perspective
    • Poor work quality
    • Being late or not showing up to work at all
    • Dishonesty- with both employees and employers  
    • Low production
    • Refuses to follow shop policies and procedures  
  • Quitting technician job
    • Not enough pay- but is improving due to supply and demand of technicians
    • Employer dishonest
    • Unfair pay system
    • Labor time too low
    • Employer/coworkers hard to work with
  • As technician what would make you change jobs
    • Health insurance
    • No weekend/evening hours
    • 401K
  • Top complaints as a technician
    • Cutting and reduced labor times
    • Pay system
    • Politics in large organization
    • Tools required
    • Health insurance
  • Importance of training
    • Tom pays $20/hour seat time for going to classes fo

Link to Automotive Management Network HERE.


  • Thanks to Tom Ham for his contribution to the aftermarket’s premier podcast.
  • Link to the ‘BOOKS‘ page highlighting all books discussed in the podcast library HERE. Leaders are readers.
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This episode is brought to you by AAPEX, the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo. AAPEX represents the $740 billion global automotive aftermarket industry and has everything you need to stay ahead of the curve. With 2,500 exhibiting companies, you’ll see the latest products, parts and technologies for your business. The event also offers advanced training for shop owners, technicians, warehouse distributors (WDs) and auto parts retailers, as well as networking opportunities to grow your business. AAPEX 2019 will take place Tuesday, Nov. 5 through Thursday, Nov. 7, at the Sands Expo in Las Vegas. More than 48,000 targeted buyers are expected to attend, and approximately 162,000 automotive aftermarket professionals from 135 countries are projected to be in Las Vegas during AAPEX 2019. For information, visit aapexshow.com.


About the author, Carm Capriotto, AAP

Carm is the founder and host of the Remarkable Results Radio Podcast and the pioneer of automotive aftermarket podcasts. Carm calls on his years of experience in the aftermarket to bring engaging stories from his guests.

Listen to raw, unfiltered, honest, and sincere stories that include insights, trends, best practices, and expertise. Each interview brings an opportunity to learn one new thing through the stories of personal achievement. Many podcast guests tell their story of transformation from working in their business to working on it.

As host of over 1,000 episodes, Carm uses his enthusiasm and passion for the aftermarket especially the service sector to take his listeners on a journey showcasing successful service professionals’ paths to Remarkable Results. He also enjoys interviews with aftermarket industry thought leaders who bring their industry perspectives to his listener.

Follow the podcast on your favorite podcast listening app and always listen to learn just one thing!