Entry Date: August 13, 2010
I am pleased to feature John Effertz, owner of ATS Service Center as my first featured business for this blog. I had the opportunity to meet with John several times this week, both as a consumer and as a blog author.
I started my week this week by taking my minivan in for an oil change at ATS. This was the first time I had my van serviced at John’s new facility, so I was curious about the events that led up to John moving into his new facility, so I asked John to fill me in on a bit of his career path and what led to the move.
John started his career with 2 years at WITC Tech school in Rice Lake. Following graduation in 1986 his first job was working as a mechanic for a service shop in Minnesota. From there he moved to a Dodge/Oldsmobile dealership and worked 2 years there. In 1991 he moved to the Chippewa Valley. He was really drawn to the area by the vast opportunities available here, the small town feel, and friendly people. He enjoyed doing the many activities available in the area, but also felt an asset to moving here was the amount of medical resources available locally.
After his move here, he worked at the Ford dealership for 15 years. In 2003 the entrepreneur in John was revealed when he decided to open ATS Service Center. His location on East Clairemont started as a 3 bay shop. Eventually John had the opportunity to acquire 5 additional bays at a garage next to his service center had gone out of business.
John’s goals in starting his business were to help people keep their vehicles running properly, and to offer the most cost-effective way to provide durability in his auto repairs. He hoped that the customers would find value in his service and come back for other services again and again, which they did! His business grew very well, however he began to outgrow the location, and the parking lot for waiting vehicles, so he began looking into expanding his operation by building a service center on the west side of Eau Claire.
He and his 7 staff members were excited to open their new facility in February 2010. ATS now offers 8 service bays, with a comfortable customer lounge featuring a kids zone to keep children occupied. John features a beverage bar for patrons to enjoy coffee, hot chocolate, chai teas, flavored water, and even has free wireless, so customers can bring their laptops and work while they wait.
For those who cannot wait for their auto repairs, ATS provides a courtesy shuttle that will take the customer to work or home until the repair is completed and pick them up again to return. Having utilized that service several times, I found John’s shuttle drivers to be very friendly and they seem to really enjoy providing the great customer service they do!
ATS just employed a new service that provides an email follow-up reminder system, that will send out a notice (email and text)to customers to remind them of their upcoming appointment with ATS. Another feature of this system gives patrons and opportunity to provide an evaluation of their ATS experience.
Several endorsements John shared with me from recent customers sum up the service that John provides to the Chippewa Valley communities.
“ATS provided excellent customer service, quality repairs done on time. ATS, a superb experience – they took the stress out of car repair. We will definitely use them for all our future auto repair needs.”
“Friendly and knowledgeable staff. Very neat and clean waiting room. Prices are competitive and fair.”
When I asked John if he has accomplished the goals he set out for in creating a great auto servicing experience, he indicated he has a great deal of pride that his goals have been achieved.
If you have not had the opportunity to visit ATS for your auto servicing, consider John’s fair, honest and dependable service, and stop in to see what they can do for you.
Check out his website at: http://www.atsservicecenter.com and his link on RelyLocal: http://www.relylocal.com/wisconsin/eauclaire/ats-service-center