Warranty Recovery

Tips for maximizing fleet profitability through a formalized program


As technicians are looking through their work orders, they will actually have a list of all items covered under warranty on that vehicle, as well as the vehicle warranty itself.

Fleets that rely on technicians to get the work done and then just process invoices after-the-fact usually have the lowest rates of warranty recovery, AssetWorks’ Knight says, points out.

“If the work is done, and it is not done by an authorized warranty provider or not documented correctly, even if covered, the fleet may not get the reimbursement it is entitled to.”

TECHNICIAN IMPACT

“The technician is the key gatekeeper of warranty recovery,” says Needham of Eaton. “Along with an electronic system that can identify the repair is within the warranty period, the technician has to help manage the repair in order to obtain recovery. The three Cs – complaint, cause and correction – are critical. Failed part retention is another typical requirement the technician must manage.”

While very capable of repairing vehicles, technicians for the most part are not administrators, Tabel of Isuzu’s adds. “They follow instructions and perform work as directed.

He recommends keeping technicians under or on the vehicles – as that is where they are most productive, and having them follow three Cs. “Require them to provide as much detail as necessary to support the repair. An experienced warranty administrator can fill in the blanks and add information as needed to meet the OEM requirements.

“Do not depend on technicians to determine warranty eligibility for a given repair. That is the service shop management’s responsibility.”

“Most technicians are well trained on the nuances of what is and what is not warranty, remarks Pennington of ArvinMeritor. “Failure analysis is really not usually in their skill set, and they could use rudimentary knowledge, but of primary importance is the ability to make the correct diagnosis and repairs.

“Generally, technicians depend on supervisors and managers to determine warranty and recovery ability. Technicians do know how long a repair job takes, but only a portion of those hours may qualify for warranty recovery.”

“In most cases, repairs can be filtered and identified as a system more accurately when the technician is on the front and back end of the process,” says Eaton’s Bergeon.

“The technician also must be aware of critical claim requirements, like ECM downloads for codes. Equally important is a feedback loop to the technician if this information is lacking or warranty processes were not followed correctly.”

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