ANAHEIM, Calif. – As fast as vehicle technology and compositions are changing, it is becoming more important for collision shops to stay current, informed and prepared to do repairs according to OE processes.
This is just one of several trends of which ALLDATA has taken notice, as it continues to position itself to help collision repair shops best serve customers. Its largest set of OE repair procedures for both mechanical and collision repairs (including 1 million additional pieces of data on the collision side) help place the company as a go-to source for information for repairs. And this is becoming increasingly important with trends the company is seeing play out.
Starting with the crux of the ALLDATA system – information – it is becoming increasingly necessary to follow OE repair processes, specifically because of the changing complexity of vehicles and increased liabilities shops today face, says Chris Hollingsworth, vice president, sales and business development – North America.
By following the OE repair procedures, technicians will be able to navigate the multiple steps in the proper order, increasing the ability to work within cycle times and avoid sending an unsafe vehicle back on the road. Whether it is advanced materials or snap-assemble sections, it is imperative to properly repair vehicles according to OE procedures.
“If you don’t follow the OE repair process, it’s a liability,” Hollingsworth says.
Additionally, he adds that another trend is insurers and DRPs requiring the use of OE data to limit liability.
Beyond that, the regulatory environment is becoming more active, especially because it is an election year. It boils down to did you do everything you needed to do to make that vehicle safe, Hollingsworth says. Repairers must complete thorough coverage of the vehicle ensuring every repair is completed.
The OE recall crisis ties into that. Hollingsworth says that the collision industry is likely one step away from being held accountable in the same way the OE dealers are held accountable to repair these recalls. Today collision repair shops need to have customers sign documents acknowledging that the shop informed them of the recalls and they chose not to have them closed at that time, limiting the liability the shop faces.
“It’s a great way for the collision shop to show the customer that they are their vehicle safety partner,” Hollingsworth says.
Changing the landscape also is that more collision shops are doing mechanical repair, another way the shop can make itself a partner with the customer.
“We see this as a necessity or opportunity to really optimize the revenue,” Hollingswoth says. “If you position it right, you’re looking out for them.”
Simple options such as testing batteries or replacing wiper blades offer a large profit option for a shop. These added features are a great way to get the referral for additional business.