Snap Shop: Ted’s Body Shop
SHOP STATS: Ted's body Shop Location: Des Moines and Altoona, Iowa Operator: Adam McRoberts Average Monthly Car Count: 50 Staff Size: 15 (combined) Shop Size: 4,700 square feet for Des Moines; 9,000 square feet for Altoona Annual Revenue: $1.5 million for Des Moines; $1 million for Altoona
1. In-House Therapy
When customers walk into Ted’s Body Shop, they are greeted by some furry animals. Adam Roberts, owner of Ted’s Body Shop, and his mother, LuAnn Lesher, bring their two dogs in every day to the shop. They keep dog beds behind the front counter. The dogs are available to offer customers some therapy if they need to de-stress after they’ve just been in an accident, Roberts says.
2. Eye-Catching Curb Appeal
Every two years, Roberts has the outside of the shop repainted. The Des Moines shop received a revamped landscape about five years ago and the Altoona location had a landscape makeover one to two years ago. To further catch customer eyes, there is a 1958 Chevrolet Apache on the lawn outside the Des Moines location. At night, the headlights are illuminated and during the spring and summer, Roberts will plant flowers in the hood.
3. Supporting the Community
To support local events in the community and market to new customers, Roberts sponsors year-round sports games, charity events and holiday parties. For Halloween, he holds a “safe trick or treat” event and offers candy and puts up inflatable bounce houses for kids. Every year, the shop opens its Altoona location as the registration site for a charity run. Roughly 400 runners have come through the shop’s doors the Friday before the race because the shop holds all the registration packets and sign-up sheets.
The shop also sponsors local baseball, softball and high school football games. The teams will come back later with signed photos or jerseys for the shop to display.
4. Updating Equipment
As the times have changed, so has the shop’s technology and tools. Roberts replaced all of the shop’s 40 light bulbs with LED lights. The LED lights have cut down his utility bill in half, he says. He replaced his paint booths with AFC Finishing Systems booths that run off natural gas. And the shop has switched to all water-based Cosmichrome paint. Through these changes, the shop has reduced average cycle time to 3.4 days.
5. Ease of Workflow
Now, the shop performs 100 percent disassembly. The business was originally at 75 percent but increased the number through increased communication in the workflow. Roberts is able to have a nice flow of communication by using Facetime and text capabilities on smartphones.
From the customer information passing through the front office staff, the shop foreman controls shop work flow. He makes sure to get parts ordered at the beginning of disassembly to avoid a high supplement ratio. All the parts information then immediately goes into the accounts receivables.