Skip to main content

Sweetening the Pot: Adding Incentives to Ensure Buy-In

Human beings are creatures of habit. Once they find a routine or a methodology that works for them, they hold onto it with grim determination. Even if a better, more efficient way presents itself, they still cling tightly to the familiar.

That being the case, it should come as no surprise that service technicians will often resist when inspection videos are integrated into the shop. They’ll find any number of reasons why they can’t or shouldn’t be doing an inspection video with each RO. Their most common refrain will likely be some version of this:

“I don’t get paid to take videos!”

Gaining video buy-in is an issue that you can easily address. Here are some ways to incentivize your technicians to record inspection videos until they come to the understanding that each video puts more money in their pockets.

Raffle Tickets

It may seem overly simple, but raffling off something of value really works. You can try giving a raffle ticket to a technician every time they record an inspection video. Obviously, the more videos they record the more raffle tickets they get and the greater the chance they have to win. At the end of each week, the service manager can collect all the tickets and drop them into a hat. The person whose ticket is drawn by the manager could win a $100 gift card to a local restaurant or something similar. Raffle tickets make the idea of recording inspection videos a lot more fun.

Flat Fee Per Video

Nothing motivates a person like cold, hard cash. That’s why another successful approach is to offer a flat fee every time a technician records an inspection video. It could be $3 or even $5 per video. The flat fee is essentially a direct payment to technicians for participating in your video initiative. You can even tell your technicians that if they record just five inspection videos a day, you’re basically buying them lunch everyday.

1/10th or 2/10ths

Getting paid your hourly rate is tough to complain about. That’s why many dealers have been successful paying 1/10th or 2/10ths of an hour to their technicians for every inspection video. If you figure it takes 5-10 minutes to record an inspection video, that’s more than fair. Even better, the incentive becomes an opcode added to each RO. When the technician goes through the RO, they address the opcode, record the video and then clock that time to their paycheck.

Increase the Flat Rate Based on Compliance

The only better incentive than money is more money. That’s why some dealers pay their technicians an extra dollar an hour on their flat rate if they meet a certain threshold for inspection videos.

So, if the dealer decides that 85% of a technician’s ROs need to have a video attached to them and the techs hit their number, the dealer rewards them with that extra dollar on their flat rate. Now a technician making $25/hr makes $26/hr for the whole period. Depending on the length of the pay period, that could be anywhere from $50-$100 extra.

No Incentive

Some dealers will say, “Hey, I pay the bills here. This is how we’re doing it. If you don’t like it, there’s the door.” That may not win you a lot of friends, but it is your prerogative. If, however, you don’t want to risk losing your technicians or creating a group of disgruntled employees, you’ll probably want to consider a friendlier way of pulling off a successful launch by working to get video buy-in from your technicians.

The Economics of Incentives

If you’re still skeptical about offering incentives, let’s see if some simple math will convince you. Take the example above of paying technicians 1/10th of an hour per inspection video. We know that the addition of video will earn $60 more per repair order versus an RO without video. Now let’s assume a 50% profit margin on that extra $60, which reflects a blended rate between the parts profit margin and the labor profit margin. Based on those numbers, you’re making an additional $30 per RO.

Next, let’s take an average technician who makes a $25/hr flat rate. If you pay them 1/10th of an hour per inspection video, they’ll make an extra $2.50 per RO. Dividing your profit of $30 by their incentive of $2.50, you get a factor of twelve. That means your service department is going to earn twelve times the return on your investment.

Not a fan of word math? Would you prefer a visual representation instead? Check out the graph below:

Many dealerships will use a 1/10th or even a 2/10ths incentive just long enough to get full buy-in from their technicians. Other dealerships keep this incentive structure indefinitely. Oftentimes service directors tell us that they would do the incentive solely for the improved customer experience, and not the increased dollars per RO, because inspection videos have such a positive impact on retention.

Of course, this video buy-in increases your technicians’ pay rate which helps you retain more of your team as well.

Regardless of which incentive option you choose, giving your employees more money is always a great motivator. And when the technicians, the service department and the dealership are all making more money, everybody wins.

Interested in Learning More Insights?

For more insights into what we’ve learned along with details about how to film and narrate inspection videos and overcome barriers to successful implementation, order a copy of our comprehensive new book The Ultimate Guide to Inspection Videos.