Tuesday, 07 April 2020 17:19

ASA Colorado Shares Ideas to Help Shops Survive During the COVID-19 Crisis

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Redding said the automotive repair industry is not used to asking the federal government for help, but these programs are designed to help it.


"This is an opportunity and, for many, a necessity. Don’t be afraid to participate in the help provided from our federal government right now,” he said.


Stressing the importance of understanding as much as possible and sharing legitimate documentation to help everyone, Capriotto turned to Pellman to discuss what the association’s membership is doing to avoid going out of business while contending with the pandemic.


“Relief is coming with this CARES Act, but it may not be as fast as we’d like it to be,” Capriotto said.


Pellman acknowledged many shop owners are concerned, since they’ve never experienced anything quite like the current situation.


“No one can say they were prepared for this to happen in their business,” Pellman said.


“There’s never been a great opportunity to join a peer group or association," Capriotto added. "I don’t know what you’re waiting for---the time is now.”


As the conversation turned to fixed business costs, Haglin suggested shop owners examine their bills for any payments that can be deferred, and encouraged a reevaluation of every aspect of the business.


“What can you cut back on? If employees are on furlough, did you place a hold on their uniforms? Can you reduce the frequency of any scheduled maintenance items? Where can you save so you aren’t expending all that money? Start being creative as you look at your finances. You need to be asking ‘what’s next’ and explore the possibilities,” Haglin said.


In regards to shops’ reluctance to stay open, risking employees’ health and dealing with concerned customers, panelists reminded attendees they should be disinfecting keys and other high-touch points before the tech gets in the car, and the process should be repeated before it’s returned to the client, preferably where they can witness the effort.


Hand sanitizer stations are another valuable asset that can help protect employees and customers.

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