Most in the Auto Repair Industry know us by our service name, Real-Time Labor Guide®. Our company’s official name, however, is Dowell Systems, Inc. located in Tampa, FL. In addition to the legendary Real-Time Labor Guide we also offer various levels of shop management software, namely Real-Time Pro and Automotive Expert.
Almost 30 years ago we started this company to give the small, independent shop owner powerful and inexpensive tools to compete with the big guys. Today, our services are used in mobile auto repair, independent and franchise auto repair shops, dealerships, fleet maintenance and elsewhere.
Evolution of Company
In 1989 Dowell Systems created a program that recorded actual labor times from invoices written by a core group of shops in the Tampa and St. Petersburg area of Florida. Over the following years this network was expanded, and the information obtained was reviewed and analyzed to yield times that were contained in our first labor guide. That research continues today with thousands of automotive repair professionals in the field throughout the country who submit their real-world labor times and suggest other improvements and refinements to the labor guide. These “real times” along with extensive in-house research has helped us create – in our opinion – the most accurate labor time guide on the market.
Beginning in 2011, Dowell Systems embarked on a complicated and exhaustive plan to revamp our software. In early 2013 the new Online version of the Real-Time Labor Guide was launched, and we were grateful for the incredibly positive response from the industry. In early 2015, we were proud to launch Real-Time Pro, our second online service offering. Real-Time Pro includes all the features of Real-Time Labor Guide Online plus additional features such as saving and retrieving customer history and business reporting. Our next goal is to take advantage of the solid foundation we have built with Real-Time Labor Guide and Real-Time Pro online, and move Automotive Expert from CD to the Internet.
Just like you, we are a small business and are proud that our hard work can assist so many. We have a solid foundation and a strong legacy, and as we continue to evolve and deliver improved services we will always keep in mind the challenges and conditions automotive repair professionals face on a daily basis. Why? Because…
We get it.
People who repair cars work extremely hard.
Your hours are long.
You are frequently the bearer of bad news.
Your customer wants their car fixed yesterday.
Your customer thinks you are charging them too much.
Some cars refuse to cooperate.
Weather plays a surprising part – sometimes good, sometimes not.
Repairing cars is intellectually demanding.
Repairing cars is physically demanding.
Sometimes you get hurt or sick, but you still have to get the job done.
Sometimes, no matter what, you just can’t get the right part.
Still you smile and persevere.
True “Repair Artists” like you are a rare breed – and WE APPRECIATE YOU.