Auto Repair Software Veteran Loves To See ‘The Light Go On’
For Marty Kloosterman, the second day of bringing a shop aboard a new automotive repair software makes any challenge worthwhile.
“On Day One, they hate it and they just don’t get it,” he explains patiently. “By the end of Day Two, they are doing my job for me, showing others what Shop-Ware does.”
He just returned from onboarding two more shops, with four others from the same company on the horizon. And he cannot wipe the smile off his face. (As you can see from the celebration with the shop owner at a casino on their final day together.)
Marty knows people resist change and will often find comfort in using antiquated systems that they know well. He helps them overcome old habits to discover profit-making efficiencies.
“I love what I do,” says a guy who exudes enthusiasm. “I love being at the counter helping their customers. When I show them how they will get texts and messages with photos and videos, they love it.”
Over the years, Marty has worked for other auto repair software companies but Shop-Ware sparks his passion more than any of them.
Marty’s start in auto shop software
First, Marty started with Allen Test products in 1988 and evolved into a shop management software specialist. He loved showing customers how products work until it becomes second nature.
Next, he moved to the Automotive Training Institute where he focused on automotive repair software installations, training and support. He also worked with some of the aftermarket’s greatest icons, including Chris “Chubby” Frederick. As a mentor, Chubby shared his passion for the industry and inspired Marty to improve in his role.
However, he longed to return to his home base of Michigan, so he took the first of a series of jobs that allowed him to work from home. You may have met him during his time as:
- Regional Training Manager for Snap-On Tools
- Shop Management Software Consultant for BP and Amoco
- Account Manager for NetWolves
During his next job, with Garage Operator, he met another stellar leader in its president, Chip Keen. Even though Marty went to work for MAM Software for eight years, that admiration for another innovator remained.
Before the July conference, Marty met with a group of owners in Frisco, Texas for a lunch and learn session.
The lure of Shop-Ware’s automotive repair software
Chip served as Shop-Ware’s Chief Product Officer – Emeritus from 2015 to 2017, then its Senior Product Advisor. He recommended Marty join the start-up and Shop-Ware Founder and CEO Carolyn Coquillette offered him a job.
“It broke my heart but I said no,” Marty recalls. “I loved the software but I thought it was too risky.”
Sadly, Marty felt he needed more job security for his family, so he waited until the moment was right.
He watched Shop-Ware’s automotive shop software evolve but hesitated to reach out to Carolyn again. “I saw where Shop-Ware had gone in those few short years and I was really excited,” he says.
He stayed in touch with Carolyn at SEMA and via LinkedIn then jumped when he saw a position open up last year. “I didn’t care about job titles because I wanted in,” he says.
He started in July 2021 as a customer success specialist and was quickly promoted to Manager of Customer Success four months later. Next week, he starts a new role on a specialized sales team which will reconnect him with former clients.
Marty Kloosterman joined Carfax’s Inside Sales Manager Britt Ford to announce that Shop-Ware offers free software to ASE-certified schools during an ASE educators conference in July.
Passionate about auto repair software training
“I love working with customers; that’s always been my passion,” Marty says. “It’s fun to train customers, show them new features and functionality of our automotive repair software to increase their profits.”
“In the end, I want them to love Shop-Ware as much as I do!”
In particular, he commends two outstanding features:
- Digital Vehicle Experience (DVX) for its ability to share digital files and offer seamless customer communication
- Auto repair analytics for its amazing business intelligence
“Compared to anything I’ve seen in the past, it blows them away,” says the self-described numbers guy. “Customers can slice and dice to see where they are winning and losing so they stop doing what doesn’t work.”
Off the clock
After work, Marty likes to get out on his Harley Davidson CVO Road Glide to ride through the Blue Ridge Mountains. He also has a Yamaha MTO9 whose front wheel refuses to stay on the ground.
He and his wife live on a lake and love to travel, especially into Mexico. They are also very proud of the two grown sons: Bailey, 25, and Reilly, 21.
On date nights, they enjoy concerts by Shinedown, Black Stone Cherry and anyone playing the music of Pink Floyd, including tribute bands.
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