As 2019 draws to a close, the world looks back on the year and reflects on all the changes that have come with the turning of a calendar.
A handful of collision repair industry leaders share their thoughts on the most impactful memories for their associations in 2019, ranging from association growth and events to future-focused enterprises, such as legislation and aiding the next generation of collision repair professionals.
Many associations report growth in membership and benefits for their members. SCRS Executive Director Aaron Schulenburg discusses the group’s continued commitment to their healthcare plan and the launch of their 401K Multiple Employer Plan. “There is a significant retirement savings shortage in America, and SCRS wants to change that in the collision repair space. We’ve put together and launched a solution that provides our small business members the opportunity to offer their employees a chance at something better. I really believe in the work we’ve done,” he states.
Schulenburg continues, “2019 has been a really interesting year with a lot of ways that SCRS served as a place to turn for information, a source of education and a voice of advocacy, but I think the year has also been earmarked by our focus on finding ways to not just improve the industry, but the lives of those who work within it. It’s exciting to work on things that will matter to people in their business, and we are happy to be leading the charge for the industry.”
CAWA established an ERISA health insurance trust this year, according to President and CEO Rodney Pierini, and Sandy Blalock, CEO of the ARA, proudly shares that ARA University, “our industry-leading online learning platform,” was converted to a full, free member benefit for direct members. “ARA leadership felt that the resources and training courses housed on the University were so valuable that every ARA member needed to have full, 24/7 access to the platform.”
Earlier this year, AASP-MA implemented a labor rate survey being run by National Auto Body Research, and according to Executive Director Lucky Papageorg, “It has substantiated something we all know – that the labor rate in Massachusetts has been artificially suppressed. It’s been a galvanizing issue for us.”