After the venue has been booked, the cleaning supplies secured, the volunteers identified and the event promoted, it is now time to look at managing the car wash event on the actual day. This article looks at how to maximize the profits and customer satisfaction from running a car wash.
On the day of the event, ensure that:
- The volunteers arrive before the scheduled start time
- That all supplies are present and accounted for
- That posters are up and strategically placed.
Don’t be discouraged if things start off slowly. Actually, it is a good idea to collect the names of people who promised to support the event, so that they can be called and reminded should things start going slowly.
Managing Car Wash Volunteers
Ensure that the volunteers take breaks so they don’t over exert themselves. Where some volunteers are slacking off and wasting time, pull them aside and remind them of the rules, or give them a pep talk according to what is appropriate for the situation.
Constantly monitor the amount cleaning supplies on hand and be ready to send someone to the supplies store to top up the inventory should they run low. Be careful to control spending though, it is easy to blow the budget on expensive and excess amounts of supplies.
Keep the Customers Happy
Survey customers while they wait and after they collect their vehicles, to see to it that they are satisfied. Actually, it is a good idea to have a quality assurance inspector to go over each vehicle, to ensure that customers are getting what they paid for.
As far as possible, customers should be made comfortable while they are waiting for their vehicles. Ensure that they are not exposed to the elements, by provide a comfortable waiting area. Consider providing refreshments for them, or at the least give them a complementary drink.
If a customer wants a basic wash, try to get them to take a vacuum job or a wax as well. While a premium can be charged for auto detailing or a car wax, the strategy usually takes a lot of time and may cause the volunteers to become overwhelmed. In essence, a strategic decision has be taken to go for more volume (basic wash) or higher margins (car detailing). Therefore, the auto detailing service can be priced at a premium and adjusted during the day based on the amount of business that the car wash has attracted.
Provide a Car Valet Service
Customers who are too busy to take their cars to the car wash can be offered a valet service. Of course one must select mature and trusted drivers to do the drop-offs and pickups. Bear in mind that this is an awesome responsibility to take on, so the risks and rewards should be carefully considered. Car valeting also comes with logistics problems. The person doing the drop offs and pickups will need a ride to pick up the vehicles and one to take him or her back, once the vehicle is returned to the customer.
Evaluating the Success of the Event
After the last customer has left, bring the entire team of volunteers together to thank them and give them final cleaning up instructions. If this is not done, the organizers will have to do it themselves or pay someone to. Do an inventory of all leftover supplies and count the cash intake. Some time will also be needed after the event to review the feedback that was given by customers, so improvements can be made for the next event.