Service Writer Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Service Writer, or Automotive Service Writer, is responsible for assisting customers with their vehicle repair needs. Their duties include greeting customers and telling them about the types of services their shop offers, updating customers on the progress of their vehicle repairs or limited offerings like free vehicle inspections and processing customer transactions upon completion of their vehicle repairs.

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Service Writer Duties and Responsibilities

Service Writers answer questions from customers and service providers. They use their expert knowledge to understand the client’s problems and explain their needs to staff for satisfactory service delivery. Service Writers also schedule appointments, process orders, monitor delivery and handle customer complaints. Their duties include working with computers and building and maintaining relationships. 

Here are examples of Service Writer duties:

  • Interact with customers, listen to their questions and concerns and provide timely responses.
  • Educate clients about the company’s products, services and offers.
  • Schedule appointments, take orders, monitor service progress, calculate charges and process payments.
  • Review customer accounts and report changes to internal staff.
  • Manage complaints, returns and resolve customer grievances.
  • Record customer details and transactions.
  • Serve as a customer relationship manager.
  • Serve as a link between customers and different departments in the organization.

What Does a Service Writer Do?

Service Writers typically work for the automotive services industry in car dealerships or repair shops, but they also commonly work in the industrial or manufacturing industries. Their job is to act as a liaison between customers and service staff and ultimately advocate for customer needs. They may also be responsible for handling customer paperwork and maintaining accurate customer records.

Service Writer Skills and Qualifications

A successful Service Writer candidate will have various prerequisite skills and qualifications needed for duties. Most Service Writers can get hired with a high school diploma or its equivalent. However, there are candidates with a college degree. Employers may favor applicants with work experience and knowledge of customer relationship management. The ideal candidate needs excellent communication skills, knowledge of word processing applications and industry-specific computer programs and record keeping. 

Here are examples of Service Writer qualifications:

  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Proven experience in sales, customer relations or related positions
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Problem-solving and listening skills
  • Patient disposition and ability to resolve conflicts
  • Knowledgeable in computer applications and industry-specific software 
  • Basic accounting skills and knowledge of electronic payment systems 

Service Writer Salary Expectations 

A Service Writer earns an average salary of $49,378 per year. The earnings depend on the industry, size of the employer, qualifications, job responsibilities and geographical locations.

Service Writer Education and Training Requirements 

The basic educational requirement to become a Service Writer is a high school diploma. Employers typically prefer candidates with a vast knowledge of their product, service or industry. Some Service Writers have an associate or bachelor’s degree in their field. The ideal candidate will be proficient in basic computer applications such as word processing software, spreadsheet and accounting programs. 

Employers often provide on-the-job training for new Service Writers to familiarize them with their procedures, customer relations management systems and educate them on the company’s products or services. For Service Writers intending to work in the automotive industry, candidates need in-depth technical knowledge of automotive components, including the internal combustion engine, electrical, suspension, braking and transmission systems. 

Service Writer Experience Requirements

Successful Service Writers will have a proven work experience in their industry. They will be knowledgeable enough to understand the needs of customers and pass on the information to the staff for quick service delivery. Candidates will have excellent verbal skills to educate clients about the company’s offers and the best product or service they should buy. They will also have a good knowledge of computer applications to collect and record data, compile reports and process orders and payments. Because they handle transactions, Service Writers need at least basic bookkeeping knowledge. 

Job Description Samples for Similar Positions

Here are job description samples for Service Writer related positions:

Meta: Learn how to write compelling Service Writer job descriptions, including work experience, educational qualifications and salary expectations.  

Frequently asked questions about Service Writers

 

What is the difference between a Service Writer and a Service Technician?

The difference between a Service Writer and a Service Technician is seniority and their areas of job focus. For example, Service Writers typically hold more of a supervisory role in an automotive dealership or repair shop. They refer customers to Service Technicians and ensure that the dealership receives payment from customers after completing maintenance or repair services. In contrast, Service Technicians work closely with other automotive repair professionals to diagnose vehicle issues, perform routine repairs and fix damaged vehicles. They communicate with the Service Writer to determine a customer’s concerns about their vehicle and the projected timeframe for repairs.

 

What are the daily duties of a Service Writer?

On a typical day, a Service Writer starts by checking the dealership’s voicemail and website to see if there are any new appointments or schedule cancelations to account for. They communicate with the service staff about scheduled appointments and collect customer account information to be proactive. Throughout the day, they greet customers who enter the shop and confirm their details or appointment needs. 

They provide customers with an estimated wait time for their vehicle repairs or scheduled maintenance and give them paperwork to fill out beforehand. They also welcome back customers who left their vehicle at the shop, process their payments and give them back their keys so they can retrieve their vehicle.

 

What qualities make a good Service Writer?

A good Service Writer has a personable manner that enables them to connect with customers and help them feel comfortable asking questions. This helps promote customer loyalty and recurring business. They’re committed to understanding automotive services and pricing options at their specific dealership so they can best help their customers. Further, a good Service Writer has excellent interpersonal communication, which allows them to adjust their communication tactics depending on whether they’re speaking to experienced Automotive Technicians or customers with limited knowledge about automotive repairs. 

A good Service Writer also knows how to use computer software and digital software systems to issue repair tickets, process payments and maintain customer records.

 

Who does a Service Writer report to?

Service Writers usually report to the Service Manager within an automotive dealership or repair shop. Service Managers act as a point of communication for Service Writers when they encounter complex customer situations and need advice on how to provide the best possible customer service. Service Writers may also report indirectly to the Dealership Owner or Shop Owner in the absence of a Service Manager role.

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