According to MCRA President Paul Flores, “This event exceeded my expectations. Attendees were wide-eyed the majority of the event. You know it was a great experience when you walk away excited to return back to your organization and share the information with your team members. I know many of us left eager to search out more avenues to expound on the content that was shared.
“The event was highly anticipated with our largest pre-registration ever. Of course, anytime Mike Anderson is scheduled to present, it’s always a great turn-out. Mike Anderson’s ‘Learn to Research, Research to Learn’ was the main event.”
MCRA’s Spring Conference commenced on Friday night with a reception, and Saturday began with an informative presentation delivered by Sam Valenzuela and Richard Valenzuela of National Auto Body Research (NABR) on the Variable Rate System (VRS).
Flores shared, “This was of particular interest to the Association, as well as current Montana State Auditor, Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Matt Rosendale, who attended the conference to specifically learn more about VRS and its potential to assist repairers and insurers in negotiating market rates with VRS’ impartial and unbiased survey information.”
MCRA held its 2019 Spring Conference in order to “fill in the gaps,” Flores explained.
“We only know what we know,” he said. “The purpose of this event was to help highlight those opportunities that exist because of what we do not know. We as repairers are at a self-created disadvantage. We all believe we are doing the right thing on every repair, but many of us are not, because we may be antiquated in today’s world of collision repair. Constantly seeking out knowledge is the only way we will close the gap.
“As vehicle technology continues to evolve, so must the way we approach repairing those vehicles. This involves greater focus on research of OEM repair manuals, training, equipping and tooling. Our ability to effectively and efficiently communicate with vehicle owners, members of our repair organizations, OEMs and insurers must also improve to consistently ensure the highest repair standards, customer service expectations and cycle times are met. For many repairers, the knowledge they obtain at these association-sponsored events may be the only opportunity they give themselves to learn. These events are about awareness and planting seeds that take root in many attendees that then invest more personal time and interest in growing their businesses.”
MCRA will hold a Fall Conference from Sept.13—14 at Fairmont Hot Springs near Butte, MT, featuring Kristen Felder and Larry Montanez with a seminar on Advanced Estimating.
For more information about MCRA and its future events, visit mcramt.com.