bookkeeping services for auto repair shops

Bookkeeping and Accounting Services for AUTO REPAIR SHOPS

Bookkeeping and accounting services for auto repair shops from $80 per month for shops with 2 bays

Here, at Bean Counters Erin Hills, we provide with the simple solution without the bells and whistles. Bookkeeping for auto repair shops is similar to any unique industry and requires setting up specific accounts in the Chart of Accounts. But before financial data flows into accounting books, auto shops perform business activities, such as diagnosing car damage and searching for auto parts on the market. These activities do not live in bookkeeping software, meaning auto shops acquire software designed for their industry.

Auto shop software differs in the capabilities it offers to the user. Powerful shop management software offers these features:

  • Managing multiple locations

  • Tracking more than one mechanic labor in the same job

  • Evaluating the effectiveness of marketing campaigns

  • Updating the status of WIP until the job completed

Not every auto shop needs these functionalities.

Do you need a "powerful" software solution?

The functionality that every auto shop needs is the service repair information for the specific vehicle, which comes from the manuals. Service repair providers (Mitchell 1, Haynes, MOTOR, and ALLDATA) maintain this information in digital or print format and offer it to auto shops and software developers. For example, MOTOR gives auto shops access to digital information on parts, repair procedures, TSBs, and estimated work times. Alternatively, Auto Labour Experts provide auto shops with a Labor Guide for $15 per month.
The same repair information is automatically available in auto shop management software, and it helps predict the cost of a repair.

Necessary Information to Establish Repair Procedure

When repair procedure is known, the auto shop is ready to start using bookkeeping software. QuickBooks provides necessary functionalities, such as:

  • creating an estimate and emailing a customer for the confirmation

  • creating a job (a project in QBO)
    tracking time for a job

  • tracking relevant costs for a job, including labor costs
    creating inventory parts

  • vendor management, bill and payments management

  • customer management

  • generating invoices plus emailing customers

  • employee expense management

  • tracking warranty returns

  • daily and management reporting plus custom made reports

What about inventory?

QuickBooks Online supports the basic functionalities of the inventory module, including the re-order feature. It works well for auto-shops with 2 or 3 bays per shop implementing JIT (Just in Time) inventory management strategy. JIT inventory approach does not require keeping excessive supply on-premises and assumes ordering parts as they deplete.

QuickBooks Online for Auto Repair Shop

QuickBooks Online supports vendor functionalities but does not provide a search for auto parts. Auto companies, such as PartsTech, sell this service for a reasonable price. It also offers a free-of-charge plan with access to 15M products from 5K brands. Most shop management software integrates part search services into their product (including NAPA TRACS). Another digital service integrated into shop management software is a license plate lookup. CARFAX provides this service in Canada. NAPA PRO Link is a web application used by auto shops to order parts from the Internet. Their service is wildly integrated into the auto shop software specifically distributed for the Canadian auto market. Similarly, IAP (Internet Auto Parts) services can be utilized to source auto parts via Ebay store. What if a shop is searching for tires? Same PartsTech offers tire lookup for $45/mo to search 40+ tire suppliers.

Limitations of QuickBooks Online

Summing up: for a smaller shop, it might be sufficient to set up business processes around necessary services, such as access to digital car part information and Labour Guides, plus accounting software such as QuickBooks. As business expands its territory, it is time to purchase a dedicated management solution - just be sure it uses North American auto suppliers and includes an accounting module. There are dozens of dedicated auto solutions available on the market for mid-size auto shops from $600 to – 1,000 for a monthly subscription. Most of these solutions integrate with QuickBooks or Sage.

Ready for the bells and whistles?

Bookkeeping and Accounting Pricing for Auto Repair Shops

Based on our standard pricing list plus optionally 3rd party auto shop management software subscription. Depending on the choice of the software, additional charges will apply for periodic data transfer into QuickBooks Online.

Reach us by email or phone to book an appointment. If you would like to discuss your business over the Internet we work with Zoom, Skype, or Teams.