Auto Service Kingston is a bit of an institution in the city. Of course, Steve Bernard, the shop’s owner, wouldn’t use that term himself. The Kingston auto shop is a small, family-run business that has built its clientele by providing good, reliable service for more than 13 years.
“It’s important to us that our customers feel like they’re part of the family. They know they’re getting great and honest service from qualified technicians.” When Steve Bernard took the shop over three years ago, he made some sweeping upgrades that modernized the shop and resulted in an influx of customers.
“There were only two of us and we were flooded with calls and couldn’t handle it,” said Steve. “I met a ReStart representative at a local event and heard about this great service they provide. Within a couple of weeks, we hired our first guy through ReStart. He hasn’t missed a day since he came on and has been a valuable member of the team for three years and counting.”
Since then, every new hire has come through ReStart. Today, Auto Service Kingston is a thriving business with deep roots in the community.
“It’s been fantastic,” added Steve. “I’ve been able to hire people who’ve been laid off elsewhere. And they all stayed and became a part of the family. There’s one guy who took an opportunity in Alberta for a few months. I’ve kept his job vacant for him because he’s so great at what he does. He’ll have a place to come back to when he returns to Kingston.” Steve credits the ReStart team for the success he’s had with his staff.
“ReStart goes the extra mile. They’re very experienced and well rounded people who offer good, solid advice. When you describe what you’re looking for, they fill in the blanks for you.” The grants and subsidies Auto Service Kingston has been able to access through ReStart have been hugely helpful. “We’ve grown in part because of the supports available to small businesses,” he said. “There’s no way I would go anywhere else.”