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Friday, 31 March 2006 17:00

Tech support group will use funds to support Tools for Techs

Written by Janet Chaney
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How many times does a technician come to a grinding halt in the middle of a repair due to lack of technical information? Such delays cost the collision industry a lot of money and create another layer of angst between technicians, management and adjusters. New technology abounds in today's vehicles, while repair information to the shops is limited and not easily available. Often, the shops are paying a great deal of money and using a lot of time to get answers to the questions. 

Todd Hoffman, a thirty-year automotive industry veteran from Houston, Texas, is offering a new solution to shops - Technical Support Group. Participating shops subscribe to Technical Support Group for $399 per year. A subscriber has unlimited access to technical support information, which Hoffman's Technical Support Group will provide upon request.

They do the research through manufacturer information, Tech-Cor, I-CAR, Independent Testing Laboratories and other resources to provide the shop with information to make the best repair decisions. Technical requests are made online at the Technical Support website, via e-mail or by fax. In emergency repair situations, there is an information hot line available.

Technical Support Group will work with subscribers through difficult repairs. They will look at photos, frame printouts and alignment reports to give a second opinion. They will assist shops in reading fault codes and help with driveability problems They will function as a third party in repair disputes by providing the most current repair information.

Shop owner Bob Schubert, Impact Auto Body, Mesa, Arizona, finds real value in the Technical Support Group. "I really like this program. We use it at least twice a week - maybe more," he says. Impact Auto Body is a large, well-respected shop dedicated to a quality repair. Five full time estimators at Impact will have access to Technical Support Group.

This is a win-win-win program. Technical Support Group is a non-profit organization with all funds going to the "Tools For Techs" program. The $399 annual Technical Support Group fee will fund new tools for technicians that have suffered severe hardship. This program was developed by Hoffman to respond to the urgent need of tools for technicians on the Gulf Coast after the 2005 hurricane season literally wiped them out.

For information regarding Technical Support Group and Tools For Techs, please go to www.toolsfortechs.org.

"Almost all technicians on the Gulf Coast last year lost all their tools," states Hoffman. "Most of them have lost their homes and places of employment. Without tools they have no way to rebuild their lives."

Hoffman is passionate about this project. It has changed his life. He has spent countless hours searching for people to help. He declares, "Our Tools For Techs program is helping hurricane victims return to work by providing them the hand-tools they lost in the recent storms. Without the necessary tools, these technicians cannot return to work and support their families. We are not giving hand-outs we are giving a helping hand to people that want to help themselves."


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