Progressive Automotive Systems

R.O. Writer


3 / 5
25 reviews

Who Uses This Software?

Independent and franchised automotive repair and tire shops in the US and Canada. From small to large shops including multi store operations.


Average Ratings

25 Reviews

  • 3 / 5
    Overall

  • 3.5 / 5
    Ease of Use

  • 2.5 / 5
    Customer Service

Product Details

  • Starting Price
    Not provided by vendor
  • Deployment
    Cloud, SaaS, Web
    Installed - Windows
    Mobile - Android Native
    Mobile - iOS Native
  • Training
    Documentation
    Webinars
    Live Online
    In Person
  • Support
    Business Hours

Vendor Details

  • Progressive Automotive Systems
  • www.rowriter.com
  • Founded 1989
  • United States

About R.O. Writer

R.O. Writer Shop Management Software helps Automotive Repair and Tire Shops work smarter and faster. Features include Smart eCat, which checks part pricing and availability for 10 suppliers in 10 seconds, all at the same time. Other features: Scheduling, AP, AR, Inventory Control, Marketing, multi-store solutions and more. Plus: the R.O. Touch mobile app that connects owners, service writers, and technicians via mobile technology including texting and digital inspections.


R.O. Writer Features

  • Accounting
  • Buy-Here-Pay-Here
  • Collections Management
  • Customer Database
  • F&I Management
  • Financing Management
  • Form Printing
  • Inventory Management
  • Lease Management
  • New Car Lot
  • Online Inventory
  • Parts Management
  • Sales Management
  • Service Department
  • Used Car Lot
  • Billing & Invoicing
  • Customer Database
  • Inventory Control
  • Labor Rates
  • Maintenance Scheduling
  • Parts Management
  • Quotes / Estimates
  • Service History
  • Vehicle Tracking
  • Work Order Management

R.O. Writer Reviews Recently Reviewed!


BAD TECH SUPPORT

May 05, 2017
2/5
Overall

4 / 5
Ease of Use

3 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

3 / 5
Value for Money

Pros: Good, but uninspired program. Decently easy to learn. Does everything we need it to. Better than paper system we had previously.

Cons: Tech support. There are other issues, but the tech support is very bad. Don't get me wrong. The tech support isn't so completely horrible that you will be forced to switch to a different program. It's just good enough that you will probably stay using their program because you don't want to go through with retraining your technofeeb employees on a new system. Let me elaborate on how bad they are: No online knowledgebase. No user forum No email blasts on known issues occurring Calls to tech support have approximately 20% chance of being kicked out of the queue and hung up on because nobody picked up the phone after 5 minutes of waiting. Calls to tech support have a >25% chance of not returning your call. Yes, I really am saying they sometimes do not call me back. Frequency of failure does increase as the severity of the problem decreases. In other words, they've always called me back on critical issues. But on very minor issues, they've failed as much as half the time to call me back. Calls to tech support rarely reach someone who can fix your problem. They almost always have to call you back. Tech support consistently and repeatedly fails to return your system environment back to it's original configuration after remotely logging in. For example: regedit is often left running and UAC is never turned back on before they log out of your system. The second worst problem is lack of user input. There are several areas in the program that work...but require many extra steps that could be reduced with minor coding additions.

Long time user, early adopter - I'm out.

Jan 09, 2018
2/5
Overall

2 / 5
Ease of Use

3 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

2 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: When we first bought in RO Writer in 2009 was among the best available. Had many features other software didn't address. At first the company was actively interested in feedback and improvements. As time and versions went by no changes or improvements were made. As updates rolled out, critical faults were repaired, but we noticed a slow loss of screen handling ability. With version 2.0, we lost significant mouse functionality in critical screens, and many useful features regarding inventory handling were eliminated. Version 2.0 is a significant downgrade. This is not an isolated incident as a scan of reviews and forums will support our experiences.

Pros: Integrates with 3rd party software. Basic point of sale functionality. With a paid Pro support subscription response is fairly quick, Tier 1 personel are fairly knowledgeable.

Cons: Screen handling, Window sizing, and placement, Field Navigation. Inventory control process. Loss of automated backup processes. Tier 2/3, and programming support ineffective when they respond. Improvements promised but never delivered. Follow-up non-existant.

Vendor Response

by Progressive Automotive Systems on March 01, 2018

We are sorry you have had that experience with RO Writer. AMS is no longer a reseller for RO Writer and now support Protractor, a cloud-based system.

An Awesome Shop Management Program

Sep 21, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Comments: The Support team at RO Writer are awesome. CSR respond to all our issues in a prompt manner. The Level 1 and 2 support staff can fix any issues we have in the same day. It happens on all software packages these days.

Pros: What we like about RO Writer is the ease of use and the ability to navigate through the Software. It is very user friendly even for new users. The Accounting side of RO Writer is a must for shops looking to increase their profitability, knowing where the Margins are is very important. Our CPA recommends it also as it is very powerful in that feature. The Support team is awesome.

Cons: Speed issues, but we are on an older version and soon moving to the newer 2.3 version. Sometimes the older version will run sluggish but our database has grown leaps and bounds over the last few years.

RO Writer seen its beter days

Aug 08, 2018
4/5
Overall

4 / 5
Ease of Use

3 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

3 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 1.0/10 Not
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Pros: It worked great for years, definately contributed to the growth of my biusiness. Once you use it it has some good logic and flow. It was a definate improvement over what i came from.

Cons: SUIPPORT, SUPPORT, SUPPORT, to much down time waiting on support. when there is a windows update it kills your license, not everytime and not on every computer. Database corruption wore us out. Spent thousands of dollars in hardware improvement only to find out it was a software issue.

Overall: It brought me to a new level of business understanding, I have simply out grown this program

Downhill spiral

Feb 10, 2018
1/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

2 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: Been using software since 1999, this company keeps going down hill with support n service. Once was the best. I've got over 30k invested so I'm held hostage. What's good is I'm seeing some well thought options from competitors. Support people are good, their just not supported by corporate

Pros: Old platform that really simple. It turns on every time we turn it on I guess that's a Pro. Needs work

Cons: No good improvement. Took years change database. Glacial tech-support week support to call back...

Vendor Response

by Progressive Automotive Systems on March 01, 2018

We are sorry you have had that experience with RO Writer. AMS is no longer a reseller for RO Writer and now support Protractor, a cloud-based system.

ABSOLUTE JUNK, BURNING MONEY IS MORE PRODUCTIVE

Jul 11, 2017
1/5
Overall

1 / 5
Ease of Use

1 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: AVOID AT ALL COSTS

Pros: THE NUMBER ONE PRO OF THIS PROGRAM IS THAT IT VERY CONSISTENTLY DOES NOT WORK, AND YOU CAN GUARANTEE THAT IT WILL RANDOMLY LOSE CUSTOMER INFORMATION, APPOINTMENTS, AND CRASH. THE ABSOLUTE LACK COMPETENCY TO CREATE THIS PROGRAM WILL BLOW YOUR MIND. IT WILL COST YOU SALES, EMPLOYEES, LOST TIME AND VARIOUS OTHER EXPENSIVE UNNEEDED PROBLEMS WITH YOUR BUSINESS

Cons: THE ENTIRE PROGRAM! THE PROGRAM NOT ONLY NEVER WORKS, BUT IT ALSO CAUSES OTHER CORRUPTION ISSUES ON ANY COMPUTER THAT HAS THE SOFTWARE INSTALLED

Ro writer covers all your needs

Aug 30, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

4 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Comments: I have used it for 5 years in both of my shops. As an owner I have the data I need even if I'm not at the shop. It has streamlined our flow 10 fold. Love it. Highly recommend it.

Pros: Reports are plentiful, repair orders are easy to read, ease of use, and has more than you will use for a shop. Easy to open and process repair orders. Ro touch is the bomb. Awesome product

Cons: Theres a lot of stuff to use. But sometimes it just takes time to decide wHt u need to use cor your situation to run your shop profitable and productive

User friendly program!! Long time user of RO Writer

Sep 20, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 7.0/10 Not
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Comments: My sales and support reps are great and are ready to offer any advice or guidance needed to continue to improve our experience with RO Writer.

Pros: Very user friendly and great customer support- New user can use this software almost immediately without too many obstacles. Great and almost seamless integration to QuickBooks!!!!!

Cons: Some of the more technical parts of the program are not as easy to navigate through but with research through online help and training, etc. -It is a great program for any repair shop.

Efficient & effective automotive repair software

Sep 27, 2018
4/5
Overall

4 / 5
Ease of Use

4 / 5
Features & Functionality

3 / 5
Customer Support

4 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 8.0/10 Not
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Pros: I like the speed with which I am able to determine availability for products and create repair order estimates. Find quite accurate.

Cons: At times will ask questions like 4wd vs 2wd, automatic vs standard shift but then will display both options on parts screen even after I have narrowed down the search. I dislike that you have to get out of an estimate for any other work in rowriter- example I am estimating brakes on customers vehicle when receive call from another customer for an appointment- have to exit estimate in order to set appointment in scheduler- I am constantly having to go back into or restart estimates. Also would like to be able to look at part pictures from the ro once on a ticket- with current system have to go back into smart jobs if I would like to reference picture again.

Crashes and support is awful

Apr 02, 2018
1/5
Overall

2 / 5
Ease of Use

2 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: I would not recommend this software to anyone. Any new system needs to be cloudbased. It will cause your Service adviser to quit.

Pros: Smart E Cat was nice to use when it worked. I like the parts return system. You need to run AutoApps with it to run efficiently.

Cons: Tech support was not good. Software would crash DAILY. Loses information constantly. Slow to update or improve any features. Expensive.

12 Years with RO Writer

Oct 11, 2018
5/5
Overall

4 / 5
Ease of Use

4 / 5
Features & Functionality
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: This product makes us money. Not only in grosses on sales, but on efficiencies. It makes ordering part very easy and you can compare competitors pricing.

Cons: Hard to learn, but the best product once you do learn it. The system does lock up from time to time, but easy to restart. Sometimes takes quite a while to get through to customer support.

Great program to organize repair orders for Auto Business

Jun 06, 2018
4/5
Overall

3 / 5
Ease of Use

4 / 5
Features & Functionality

4 / 5
Customer Support

4 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 8.0/10 Not
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Pros: Easy to input information into the system. Keeps customer database and inventory organized. Easy to check customer's history on vehicles

Cons: RO Writer is not always easy to navigate. It took some time to learn. Sometimes has glitches, however Customer Service is available to assist.

Overall: Helpful in organizing all aspects of automotive database.

Very helpful customer service

Sep 13, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

4 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Comments: Customer support were very quick to respond to our issue which is very much appreciated!

Pros: Easy to Use- even for first time users Customer Service is very Helpful Quick Response Time

Cons: Unable to think of a con at this time!

Horrible Software

Jan 18, 2018
1/5
Overall

1 / 5
Ease of Use

1 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: I would NOT recommend this software. We will not be renewing when our contract ends!!

Pros: There is absolutely nothing good about this software. It is a total waste of dollars spent. Unfortunately I can't come up with a single pro.

Cons: Customer support is not friendly to work with, the software is always glitching out on us, you can't track invoices/emails sent

Vendor Response

by Progressive Automotive Systems on March 01, 2018

We are sorry you have had that experience with RO Writer. AMS is no longer a reseller for RO Writer and now support Protractor, a cloud-based system.

Customer Service

Aug 24, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: Thank you to the customer rep for always assisting myself and my coworkers. He always gives us fantastic customer service.

Cons: The only issue we have ever had with RO Writer is that the wait times are very long on the phone when trying to get through.

Helpfull and easy

Sep 28, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: Lots of configurations to fit your needs. Electronic ordering parts and labor matrix help with profits.

Cons: Sometimes support can be slow, luckily we are usually able to work around most issues, Thankfully there are not many

been a customer since 1998 they don't care about the software anymore

Apr 25, 2018
1/5
Overall

2 / 5
Ease of Use

2 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support
Likelihood to Recommend: 2.0/10 Not
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Comments: it's a shame this company took such a bad turn to the worst. after all these years I am actively looking

Pros: there are none it's just aggravation there behind the times the marketing aspect of the program is terrible you cannot even pull up a declined items so you can reach out to your customers

Cons: constant crashes customer support is ill equipped to handle any questions they always say we need to get you two tier 2 that will take a couple days for them to call you back... if they call. in the meantime your system is down you can't collect any money of nor write any invoices

Terrible Support

Jul 01, 2018
1/5
Overall

1 / 5
Ease of Use

1 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: I would really like a response!

Pros: There aren't any. Their customer support is the worst I've had. I've been having problems for several months now and they still haven't been addressed or fixed. There is no urgency to keep your business running and they are expensive compared to other Point of Sale Systems.

Cons: System crashes constantly every day. The Tech Support is the worst. They don't have trained people. It takes days to get them to call you back while your system is down and you can't process your customers. My emails to Managers emails kicked back to me stating their email is full. I leave phone messages and get no return calls to help fix the multiple problems we are having. I was told by the tech support that they were training people and didn't have anyone who could help me. Carfax isn't populating vehicles correctly, smart e jobs isn't working correctly.

OWNER

Jul 07, 2017
1/5
Overall

3 / 5
Ease of Use

3 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: I would not recommend this product to anyone.

Pros: The smart E-Cat function when it works. The customer support is so poor that I can not say anything else positive about this software.

Cons: The customer support is awful. The tier one technicians can rarely help you and tier two is slow to respond if at all. I have frequent file corruptions.

Worst investment I made in my company it 25 years

Feb 28, 2018
1/5
Overall

1 / 5
Ease of Use

1 / 5
Features & Functionality

Comments: Not likely to recommend this product as it is very inefficient and seems to be not working most of the time with no tech support as I was promised ,

Cons: Tech support is the very worst, never call you back and the system is down for days and they expect you to pay a fee each month even after you pay minimum amount for the system as it is down and very rude if you try to get a commitment for efficiency , They say windows is the problem but that doesn't solve the info you lose while the program is not working, My workers just refuse to use it anymore, Very unreliable business !

Vendor Response

by Progressive Automotive Systems on March 01, 2018

We are sorry you have had that experience with RO Writer. AMS is no longer a reseller for RO Writer and now support Protractor, a cloud-based system.

RO WRITER IS A FANTASTIC PRODUCT.

Aug 28, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Comments: love this product, WE USE IT ON 3 COMPUTERS IN MY SHOP AND ALL WORKS WELL. THE CUSTOMER SUPPORT IS DONE BY KNOLEGABLE PEOPLE IN THEIR FIELD. CONSTANTLY UPGRADING AND IMPROVING THE PRODUCT!

Pros: R O WRITER easy to use, great support. CAN CONNECT TO MULTIPLE SUPPLIERS FOR PART PRICING. KEEPS CUSTOMER DATA ORGANIZED AND IS EASY TO ACCESS .

Cons: none! THERE ARE NO CONS I'M APPLING ON LINE AND CHECKING FOR PRICES ON UPDATES AND IMPROVEMENTS. DIDNT KNOW ABOUT ALL OF THE BENNIFITS AVALIABLE TO US.

Where has RO Writer been?

Aug 29, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Comments: The support staff work together well to get us what we need, at a price we can afford.

Pros: It does exactly what any of the newer generation shop software should be doing. We are no longer using the same software that our fathers used. With the newer technology in cars its nice to know that our shop software is keeping up.

Cons: The iTunes app could use some work. It improves all the time, but would like to see this improved...

R.O. Writer

Feb 27, 2018
1/5
Overall

1 / 5
Ease of Use

1 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: I would never recommend this to anyone. If you are looking for a system that does it all, do not waste your hard earned money on this system.

Cons: Everything about this system is a con. It cost way to much to begin with. Nothing flows or is easy to use in this system. The inventory is a useless feature, along with everything else.

Vendor Response

by Progressive Automotive Systems on March 01, 2018

We are sorry you have had that experience with RO Writer. AMS is no longer a reseller for RO Writer and now support Protractor, a cloud-based system.

Review on R.O. writer

Mar 28, 2018
1/5
Overall

3 / 5
Ease of Use

2 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Pros: Not many, reports no very detailed, very limited. Smarter at works sometimes. Updates are scarey. Support is terrible

hard drive crash

Sep 05, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Comments: great cust service and my customer rep was a great help too

Pros: ro writers customer service technitions where of great help finding us a usable backup so we could restore the system worked as fast as possible