OEM certification programs are increasingly becoming a major topic of discussion among collision repair facilities across the country.
Scott Biggs, CEO and chairman of Assured Performance Network, recently shared how to leverage the certified repair provider model during an Elite Body Shop Academy webinar.
Biggs talked about the specialized business tools, processes and strategies that are crucial to successfully operating as a certified repairer in the changing marketplace.
“Nearly 90 percent of automakers in the country have a certification program or a repair network of some kind,” said Biggs. “This has permanently changed the collision repair world.”
Many shops are adopting a new business model based on becoming a certified repair provider.
Not only are the programs being designed to produce a certified repair, but Biggs said they are also focused on offering customers an exceptional repair experience. Part of this includes creating a repair plan that requires OEM procedures, documents every single repair and enforces quality control throughout the business. Biggs said these components will help the shop achieve and maintain high efficiency and profitability.
Four Contributing Factors to the OEM Certification Model
Just a decade ago, Biggs said there was a perfect storm of conditions that led to the creation of the compelling model that is altering the industry.
The first of these is commodization, which he defined as the process by which goods lose their economic value and are indistinguishable in terms of their uniqueness or brand in the eyes of the market.
“This means that your product and what you sell has the same price, look and name,” explained Biggs.
In this case, he was referring to body shops having many similarities in the early 2000s, which didn’t allow for them to differentiate themselves from their competitors.
Biggs said the second condition that had a significant impact was the negativity buyers often associated with having a poor collision repair experience.
“About 62 percent of the time, if customers had a bad repair, they would blame it on the car manufacturer or the car, and they would have the propensity to change brands,” explained Biggs.