Mike Anderson of Collision Advice said he sees several ways to measure whether his quarterly “Who Pays for What?” surveys, now in their third year, are having an impact.
The industry trainer and consultant said the first way is whether the surveys find an increase in the percentage of shops successfully getting paid for some of the “not-included” labor operations the surveys ask about. The most recent survey found that for each of the 21 procedures detailed in the survey, more shops this year reported insurers are paying them “always” or “most of the time” compared to the same survey last year.
But a second way Anderson said he is measuring the surveys’ success is a little more subtle. He hoped the surveys would raise awareness of not-included operations and reduce the percentage of shops who acknowledge they’ve never even included some of the operations on their estimates or invoices. After all, when those shops are asked why they’ve never asked to be paid for one of those procedures when it is necessary and done, about 75 percent of them say they were either not aware that the item was "not-included," or it simply never occurred to them to charge for it.
By that measure, the surveys are clearly having a positive impact, Anderson said. The survey conducted in January, for example, found that nearly every “not-included" refinish operation asked about had a higher percentage of shops (compared to a year earlier) now negotiating to be paid for them.
Although about 66 percent of shops report being paid to “refinish pinch welds after clamp damage” always or most of the time when it is necessary and performed, about 1-in-7 shops say they never have billed for that “not-included” operation.
“If you don't bill for it, you will never be paid for it, yet the biggest percentage of shops not billing for these procedures say they never thought of billing for them when they are required as part a repair,” Anderson said. “These surveys were designed to help raise that awareness."
The latest of the 2017 “Who Pays” surveys, focused on frame and mechanical labor operations, is being conducted throughout the month of July; click here for more information or to take the survey.