A Look Inside Blackfoot's New Service Department
We have not been sleeping for the past 6 months. Since we retired we have basically sold everything from the team and the building is for sale. Dean at Blackfoot Direct has absorbed most of the racing tools and equipment plus parts into Blackfoot Direct and now has an Off-Road Service Centre in the back of BFD. Guys are lining up bringing in motors, having their suspension serviced, and adding accessories to there bikes--that has been good.
Once I came back I had all this time on my hands...LOL. Been in the business for 37 years and always worked sales and marketing other than a year running the service department. It is common knowledge that our service department had suffered over the last number of years. Jeff Mason, who has been a loyal employee for the road race and the mx team, has come over to the dealership to assist in a complete transformation of our service department.
Basically, we started in the end of October and designed a complete gut of our current service department and came up with a new plan and re-named our department, "Blackfoot Certified Service." I call it "Re-defining Powersports Service." No team can have success without a new mission statement "One team - One Plan - One Goal."
Over the years of racing I had the opportunity to be in some really cool race shops. They were spotless with extensive cabinetry, lighting, and organization. In order to put this together at our dealership, we teamed-up with Rousseau Storage Solutions who has done a lot of auto dealers across Canada. We first met the team from Rousseau, which is located outside of Quebec City, at one of the races a few years ago. We had discussions with them about being part of a project of building an actual full-on race facility. This did not materialize, although it did for our dealership which, in the long-run, will prove very beneficial for our customers in providing them with a professional enviroment while we work on their bikes. The work benches, tool chests, storage systems, and racking, absolutely re-defined our service department.
Bascially, we gutted every tool, bench, and part, and moved it out of the department right after the bike show in Calgary, from painting the walls and doing Stonhard on the floors, a complete lighting and electrical review, upgraded exhaust fans and air make-up systems, designing engine and suspension rooms, installing storage solutions for all the necessary shop supplies, installing an oil system which pumps directly to each service bay to the final install of all the Rousseau cabinets.
Besides the physical changes we also have developed a new service menu for our customers, developed new job descriptions, reviewed policies and procedures, and are currently assembling a team of experienced service technicians and staff.
We wanted to bring some of the heritage of our race team into our new Certified Service Department, so we hung up all our number plates from the past 12 years in MX racing, brought out a special helmet collection as well as our championship road race plate and team leathers. The department now feels a little like our old race truck so Jeff and myself are at home.
We are looking forward to re-defining the level of service from our dealership as well as the industry.