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My name is David Graham-Eagle. G-E Automotive Systems was designed by me, an automotive mechanic for 31 years, the webmaster for this site and currently a Benz technician in Sydney. My brother, the programmer, is a mathematics professor in the USA and has been writing computer software since the mid-seventies. G-E's design was conceived and developed in the actual workshop environment, not in a comfortable programmer's office. Only the programming itself was performed outside the workshop. To be perfectly honest, the programmer knows absolutely nothing about the automotive industry but he's a fluent programmer capable of making software "dance". His job is to transform my requirements into software and send me the results.

So what led to the development of this software? The answer is simple. In the recent past I was in a job managing a workshop. (Before I was offered a deal I could not refuse at a particular Benz dealership). During this time I was using computers in the workshop for many years and have spent vast amounts of money on software that looked the part. With time, the shortcomings of the various software packages became obvious. The systems were riddled with "bugs" which the suppliers would say were fixed in the next update (more money). The systems were loaded with functions I never had the need to use and the support was a never ending drain on the pocket. By 1999 I was aware the software I was using at the time was not Y2K compliant and the update was going to cost 65% of the original purchase price of nearly $2000.00. I had had enough and development of G-E Automotive Systems began. Thankfully I was using G-E before GST was introduced in Australia. Many workshop software users were severely "had by the short & curlys" by their software vendors with the introduction of GST in this country.

The software was originally being developed for personal use with no thought of selling it. Then other mechanics I had dealings with saw it on my computers and wanted to buy it as they were sick of the escalating costs and lack of performance of their systems. So you can regard this software as a "stand" for mechanics who wish to start using software to run their businesses or are "jack" of their current system's performance, errors and cost of maintenance. I'm one of you guys, on your side. I fix cars and bust my knuckles like you. I'm offering one off cost, no support fees. If you need help you speak with me directly. Ongoing development and updates available free for download from this site. I am available by phone at practically any time, not only during office hours, as I know many of you do a lot of catching up at home at night in your own time.

G-E Automotive Systems sports an array of functions, all designed to make your job simpler, faster and a pleasure to use. The functions start with the obvious, client and vehicle control, accounts tracking and maintenance, parts system, general ledger and of course, invoicing functions. Then there are the slightly less obvious service reminders, letter generation, quote system, data backup, dockets and reporting. G-E also incorporates a calculator function, conversion table, job bookings function and graphics library to assist you.

From version 3.22 we integrated the "Sentry Spell Check Engine" at considerable cost, one of the world's renowned spell checkers, used by many major software developers and at no extra cost to our users.

Ok, this is no big deal, all workshop software does this, well maybe not the last few, as all these are basic requirements for workshop management. Then there are the extra more obscure functions which differentiate software systems from one another. Cheap software is generally lacking in this department whereas expensive packages overdo it and clutter the system with a vast array of functions of which you use very few. Remember, software development is a lengthy, time consuming and expensive task. You should not pay for functions you will not use. G-E differs from the competition in two main areas.

The first area involves the "value" of its functions. You will find you will use most, if not all its functions. Sure, we could have the program tell you how long a client has been coming to you, how many Toyota Camrys are in your database and the number of clients you have called Smith. We could even play an engine sound when you select the vehicles menu and have your computer "whistle Dixie" when you exit but these sorts of functions add to the cost and have no value.

The second and most important area where this software differs from most of the competition is how it performs its tasks. Computers today are extremely fast and unlike humans don't get bored with tedious tasks, yet many software packages do not utilise this power. Good software has the computer do the work. This means more can be achieved with less input from you. An example of this is the backup system. Two mouse clicks and all your data is gathered, formatted, compressed and written to your choice of backup disk.

I have been asked on occasion why this software is priced so reasonably, in fact I have been told on numerous occasions that it is too damn cheap! People are skeptical as we know. If software is too expensive and many packages are, you simply won't buy it. If it is too cheap, then maybe you think it isn't capable and shy away.

As far as workshop software is concerned, G-E is priced extremely reasonably. I know this is fact, I've done my homework and examined my competition. Quite simply, I don't rely on sales of G-E to feed my family. I make my real money tearing my hair out, ripping my hands to pieces and fixing cars every day, a job for which I'm pretty well paid. If you were to purchase a competitor's software package, my family and I are not going to go hungry. (My son & I just won't get the bigger radio controlled plane we wanted!)

G-E is not the cheapest either but there is a colossal amount of work in this software, tens of thousands of lines of code and the number of  late nights and the amount of coffee consumed is quite staggering! Surely this is worth a reasonable recompense. Not to mention the ongoing work we put into this software and the repetitive costs of maintaining a site such as this.

Many of my competitors claim their software is the easiest to use and is capable of extraordinary things. For example, a common claim is "Increase your profits". A certain competitor has a page on their site showing an example of how much extra profit can be made by using their software. This makes a very amusing read and I am soooooo tempted to link you directly to the page but good ethics stop me. Good software can save you some time, sure, but don't expect to buy that boat on any extra profit the software makes for you. Want to increase your profits? Fix more cars or charge more, or work more efficiently, quite simple.
Another claim I see is: "Get home on time". Anyone who owns their own business in this trade knows that you never get home on time and your dinner is invariably cold when you do. I really don't see how software can assist in this matter, but I'm working on it.
"The easiest software to use". How often do you see this one?! Every person has a different mind and interpretations vary immensely. Software some may find a cinch to use may well be a nightmare for others and vice-versa. You need to find the software that suits you.
There are many other fascinating claims I've seen. Now if we can only make G-E improve your sex life and golf swing..........................

If you are interested in workshop management software, download this software and compare it with the competition. It costs nothing to try and we limit the trial by the number of invoices (100) not by time. I hate software evaluation on a time limit! You just may have found the package that suits you. You don't need to be a computer guru with really thick spectacles to use it and we would welcome you to the growing list of "G-E users".

David Graham-Eagle
Designer/Owner G-E Automotive Systems.