Technological advances do benefit technicians and the industry as a whole, but certain advances make it harder for PDR technicians to get a grasp of the tools required to repair these cars, Williams said.
“Dentsmart embraces these challenges,” he said. “Our advanced training programs not only include PDR repair processes, estimating and customer service skills but also advanced electronics and safety systems, structural design, panel composition, position statements and OEM repair procedures.”
Debbie Haxton, another partner at Dentsmart, said a hailstorm can mean more revenue, but it’s a lot more involved than just simply repairing dents. There is havoc that begins in the front office, she said.
“In a matter of minutes, a shop can go from capacity—trying to handle their normal conventional workload—to 100% over capacity when a hailstorm hits,” Haxton said. “There are a lot of questions to be addressed. How to handle the calls from customers and insurance providers? How to efficiently handle estimates and scheduling so you capture the job?”
Dentsmart and other PDR companies are using new technology to serve its network shops and provide better customer service, Haxton said.
“At Dentsmart, we developed a proprietary hail management system—an automated estimating program that interfaces with the body shop's estimating program,” she added. “We also capture all of the photos during the estimating process.”
So, the next time you see a hailstorm coming your way, think about PDR and how it can raise your bottom line. Adding another item to your menu of services requires strategic planning and the correct training, tools and equipment to do the job right.