In “Track and improve these numbers in your refinish department” and “Maximize your paint shop performance” I discussed some of the factors you should be considering in terms of maximizing your paint shop performance. Here are a few more.
Start the day with a paint list
So often the key to better paint shop performance comes down to improving – and consistently using – better processes. One such process that I consider mandatory – yet often doesn’t happen in some shops – is the paint team starting every day with a to-do list.
The daily paint list tells them what they need to accomplish that day, and the priority of that work. Too often I see that being left to chance, with the paint department staff picking and choosing. But these decisions should be made collaboratively between the front office and the paint team, based on promised delivery dates and on maximized use of the booth and available labor.
Those decisions and that list have to be done by the time the work day begins. Taking a list out to the paint shop at Noon or even 10 a.m. just doesn’t cut it. It’s better to know at the beginning of the day, for example, that not everything the office wants to be painted that day can be because of some issue management isn’t aware of. That enables any rescheduling and customer notification to be done early in the game versus at the last-minute. You have time to recover. You don’t have time to recover half-way through the day if it’s only then that you find cars that you thought would be sprayed at the beginning of the day weren’t.
Nothing adds productivity more than just making sure a well-managed and communicated paint list happens at the start of each day. Shops tend to buy all the latest-and-greatest drying equipment and spray booths, but without an effective daily paint plan, they’ve likely wasted the capital investment in new equipment and may not get any added productivity. Your paint shop will always only be as good as your prioritized daily paint plan.
Follow consistent prep processes
Where does 90 percent of the dirt inside the paint booth come from? It comes in from that car you just brought into the booth without it having been prepped correctly.
I recently worked on this with a client shop in Baltimore. Vehicles weren’t been blown off and washed adequately before going into the booth, so they had a dirt problem and were spending hours denibbing, sanding and buffing.