In this article, ARCA’s Mike Smith takes a look at the AAAA’s new workshop benchmark tool

As you may know, the AAAA conducts an annual benchmarking survey each year, with 200 workshops surveyed and the collected data analysed by the AAAA’s research partner and data specialist, ACA Research.
In this survey, data is collected on how these workshops are performing now and their outlook for the future. We look at whether they are growing or contracting, and for those that are performing well, we drill down further and ask them to tell us what they are doing that is new or different.
This has allowed us to create a sizeable and very valuable data set on not only the current and projected state of Australian workshops in Australia, but also to gather some amazing business growth strategies intelligence.
This information has already been very helpful for our industry and workshops everywhere, but the AAAA has now taken this another step further by using this data and the associated strategy intelligence to create the new AAAA Workshop Benchmarking Tool.
The new and free to use benchmarking tool is available for all of Australia’s workshops, including those that are not AAAA members, on the AAAA website homepage or at

To use the tool, workshops simply need fill out a one-page online survey which takes only minutes.
Questions to be answered include information around:
• Business type (independent, part of a chain, mobile, dealer, distributor/reseller etc)
• The location of your business
• The percentage of capacity at which you are running
• How many vehicles serviced/repaired in the last month (select from a range)
• Whether those numbers have increased or decreased in the last 12 months
• Whether you expect those numbers to increase or decrease in the coming 12 months
• What performance indicators you utilise in your workshop, if any
• How your profitability has changed over the last 12 months
• What services you offer or are planning to offer

Once you have input this information, it is collected by ACA Research and the tool will instantly process the data.
It will then display information showing not only how your results compare to the wider population of Australian workshops and workshops in your State, but also provide suggestions on how you may better your position based on the lessons learned from high performing workshops. The full report will also be emailed direct to your nominated email address.
This tool is of course in its very early days, however as more workshops use it, the more data we will collect and that will mean the tool and the results and advice it provides will become more and more sophisticated over time.
I for one am very excited to see how this tool evolves. I believe any tool that workshops can access to gather useful information about not only where they stand in relation to their industry and their competition but also what they can do to protect and improve their standing is a valuable one.
Information is power, and with no cost involved and no AAAA membership required to access, I can’t see any reason why any workshop in Australia shouldn’t give the AAAA Workshop Benchmarking Tool a try – you never know what you may learn or what new idea may be sparked to help you drive more business through your front door.
Don’t forget either – if you are looking for even further insights into the market, all AAAA members have access to a library of industry research and data to help you make smarter business decisions, as well as specialist advisory services such as those supplied by Employer Assist and Industry Legal.

To access, simply login to the Member Portal of the website.