Hammer & Dolly October 2022

Page 20

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Knowledge to take your shop to the next level.






Are shops calibrating as often as they should?


Change – good and bad – is coming.

3October 2022 DEPARTMENTS 4 President’s Message 6 Executive Director’s Message 7 WMABA Member Application 17 WMABA Sponsors 29 WMABA Board of Directors 34 Advertisers’ Index
VAN ALSTYNE A transparent conversation. ? ?

Steven Krieps (304) 755-1146 skrieps@live.com

For a long time, insurance policies have contained appraisal provisions, which provide policyholders and insurers with an alternative dispute mechanism for handling loss value disputes –without costly and time-consuming court cases. But as with any contractual provision, misinformation and mishandling occurs on all sides.

When there’s a dispute about the cost of repairs, many shops will suggest customers check their policy to see if it includes this dispute mechanism. Between insurers insisting on virtual inspections and appraisers being required to adhere to a long list of mandates, the appraisal process itself can become muddy, costly and even involve court; however, as a licensed public adjuster who conducts appraisals daily, I can assure you that invoking the Right to Appraisal is worthwhile if the carrier isn’t being fair and reasonable. Over 90 percent of customers end up being reimbursed at a significantly higher amount than the insurer’s original offer.

Sadly, this may take weeks or months due to delays. Additionally, the insured must pay $300-400 or more for an appraiser since most policies require each side to cover the cost of their own appraiser and split the cost of an umpire if required. Because these payments are not damages, they are typically not recoverable. As you research the Right to Appraisal, “arbitration” will be mentioned frequently. It’s important to recognize the distinction: Appraisers are limited to making factual determinations regarding the amount of damages (loss) incurred. The appraisal provision does not determine liabilities of the contracted parties…it seeks to answer one question of fact: What is the amount of loss?

Because it is not an arbitration clause, the appraisal provision determines what options each side may pursue following a breakdown or non-participation by the other party. So, what does an Appraisal Clause look like?

APPRAISAL: If we and the insured do not agree on the amount of loss, either may, after proof of loss is filed, demand an appraisal of the loss. In that event, we and the insured will each select a competent appraiser. The appraisers will select a competent and disinterested umpire. The appraisers will state separately the actual cash value and the amount of the loss. If they fail to agree, they will submit the dispute to the umpire. An award in writing of any two will determine the amount of loss We and the insured will each pay his chosen appraiser and will bear equally the other expenses of the appraisal and umpire. We will not waive our rights by any of our acts relating to appraisal.

Although this is pretty typical language, policies can vary – some even prevent invocation without mutual agreement by both parties! Courts may not always agree, but as an appraiser, there’s not much you can do at this point except leave it alone. I often advise my customer to get a certified copy of their policy that was in effect on the date of their loss. Most states require insurers to submit contracts to the insurance commissioner for approval, where they’re filed on a database. Shops that are considering (or currently) providing information to consumers about Right to Appraisal can look up insurance policies online at bit.ly/HDSERFF.

As a shop, what do you do if the consumer has this provision and decides to elect this process? You’re not actually a party to the contract between the insurer and the insured, so the outcome doesn’t affect you – except, are you going to receive a reasonable cost to repair the vehicle if the customer is being underpaid? Probably not. So, maybe there’s a few things you’ll want to know…

Stay tuned for the November edition of Hammer & Dolly when Steve will share some thoughts on what shops need to consider when a customer invokes Right to Appraisal. H&D


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PUBLISHED BY TGP, Inc. 244 Chestnut St., Suite 202 Nutley, NJ 07110 973-667-6922 FAX 973-235-1963

Reproduction of any portions of this publication is specifically prohibited without written permission from the publisher. The opinions and ideas appearing in this magazine are not necessarily representations of TGP Inc. or of the Washington Metropolitan Auto Body Association (WMABA). Copyright © 2022 Thomas Greco Publishing, Inc.

Stock Images courtesy of istockphoto.com.

4 October 2022
Don Beaver (donbeaver3551@gmail.com) 443-235-6668 Barry Dorn (bdorn@dornsbodyandpaint.com) 804-746-3928 Bill Hawkins (hawkinswilliamjr@gmail.com) 510-915-2283 John Shoemaker (john.a.shoemaker@basf.com) 248-763-4375 ADMINISTRATION EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Jordan Hendler (jordanhendler@wmaba.com) 804-789-9649 WMABA CORPORATE OFFICE P.O. Box 3157 • Mechanicsville, VA 23116
WMABA OFFICERS PRESIDENT Steve Krieps steve@gregclineauto.com 304-755-1146 VICE PRESIDENT Rodney Bolton boltonconsulting61@gmail.com 443-386-0086 TREASURER Kris Burton kris@rosslynautobody.com 703-820-1800 SECRETARY Phil Rice phil@ricewoods.com 540-846-6617 IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT Torchy Chandler Torchy Chandler torchy.chandler@gmail.com 410-309-2242 BOARD OF DIRECTORS RIGHT TO...WHAT, EXACTLY? MESSAGE PRESIDENT’S



It’s a shame to waste wisdom on a fool, but a fool can become a wise man if only he would seek counsel from those who have the experience and knowledge they seek. Rhetorically, why reinvent the wheel when a perfectly good wheel design can be copied? I want to give you a series of articles where I share some wisdom I’ve gathered in my notes over the years of learning, and from some unlikely places!

This first one will no doubt give a giggle to those who know me well. Even if you don’t know me “well”, it would probably come as no surprise that I lead a Greeting Team at my church. In this role, I am built up weekly with leadership messages from my church pastors and team leaders. There is so much collective knowledge in this group from folks who corporately manage teams of hundreds of people with shared goals and directives. So, this small morning meeting is full of giant gold nuggets of wisdom I use in my own daily business and my personal life.

I’d like to share with you some of these principles that have impacted me a lot. They are pretty simple, but that’s what makes them awesome.

First, my favorite one: Develop an unoffendable spirit. Ouch. This one hurts me. It’s a constant work in progress, always and daily, and while this one is important in many ways, it isn’t as simple as it first sounds. It doesn’t mean you can just eat whatever you don’t like to move on, or to just get along to be a team player. It means you have to practice being offended, and dealing with it. Step forward into what someone is trying to correct you with. Do this by listening with the intention to hear, hearing their side of the situation, and then finding the opportunity to grow yourself from what they’ve shared.

If someone has come to you with a complaint about something you did: Thank them for sharing, because it was likely hard for them. You know this if you’ve ever tried to tell someone something you know they don’t want to hear, with fear you’ll have a fight on your hands.

Setting down your offense means you have to also submit your ego, or “check your ego at the door” as the popular saying goes. When you agree to be on a team with a leader, you submit to their leadership. At minimum, you agree to submit to the team as a whole even if you are the leader. And here’s the kicker:

Submission is only tested in disagreement. Who are you when you disagree with your leader? If you are the leader, how can you be when you disagree with the complaint given? A fool will get twisted up in their feelings, while a wise man will hold them back. Practice this the next time someone brings you something which takes your leadership – or submission to leadership – and adopt an unoffendable spirit.

Everyone around you will see someone who is considerate, objective and leading through strength by choosing wisdom over the easy emotional response. H&D

It’s the month of our annual WMABA Golf Outing on October 13, being held this year in Maryland at the Oak Creek Golf Club!

Like I said last month, a morning tee-off will no doubt have a crisp bright start to a fun day together, to benefit our community. I cannot wait for this day every year, when we can have a great time for a great reason! I hope you will be there!

Jordan Hendler (804) 789-9649


Valuable insights from unlikely places.
6 October 2022
Check the WMABA website and newsletters for regular updates and reports from the Executive Director’s perspective.


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Now that kids have been in school for a little over a month, it’s almost time for automotive professionals around the world to follow suit as they pack their bags and head to the 2022 SEMA Show to learn more about the industry’s latest products, innovations and trends – both in the education rooms and on the trade show floor at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

But collision repairers eager to stay in the know will be heading next door to the Westgate Resort & Casino on Tuesday, November 1 for a crash course in all things collision via the Collision Industry Conference (CIC). This year’s meetings have been jam-packed with relevant discussions and networking opportunities, and the final CIC of 2022 promises to maintain that momentum.

“The industry and vehicle technologies are changing faster than ever before, and CIC is the best place to learn what is current in regards to processes and issues that repairers contend with,” shares CIC Chair Darrell Amberson (LaMettry’s Collision). “We have lots of informative, interesting and compelling presentations

lined up, and I’m looking forward to learning something new.”

Although every presentation at CIC is sure to be engaging and serve to elevate the industry, the Data Access, Privacy and Security Committee plans to build on discussions held during this summer’s industry meetings in Pittsburgh, combining three separate presentations into a single impactful message for attendees.

Committee co-chairs Dan Risley (CCC Intelligent Solutions) and Trent Tinsley (Entegral) are excited to share insights on consumer privacy rights, ensuring attendees have the prerequisite knowledge to benefit from the following discussion on chain of custody as it relates to data and agreements.

“For the past year, we’ve invited industry leading companies that require the use of EMS and/or BMS data from collision repairers to present during our committee’s allotted time. Companies such as Enterprise, CCC, Entegral, Car-Part, Mitchell and others have used this time to explain how their company uses EMS and/or BMS data and specifically what data fields they need,”

8 October 2022


Risley explains.

“Collision repairers need to understand their EULAs (end user license agreements) with all of their partners and how the data could potentially be shared intentionally or accidentally with the companies they do business with,” he continues. “This sets the stage for a discussion on the data chain of custody.”

During the most recent CIC, Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) Executive Director Aaron Schulenburg shared “some disturbing information relative to a company selling collision repairers data including PII,” Tinsley recalls. “Understanding how this company acquired the data and where the breakdown in the chain of custody occurred would be helpful in preventing this in the future. In addition, there will be a presentation from two collision repairers who will share their stories of data being shared – and likely sold – to vehicle history reporting companies without their authorization or knowledge.”

Consumer privacy concerns extend beyond the shop. “This isn’t just important to the collision repair industry, but to all industries,”

Tinsley points out. “But as an industry, we need to find solutions before the government assists us in defining those solutions. Several states have elected to take a proactive approach to protecting consumers’ data. The collision industry needs to take notice, especially in light of SCRS’ bombshell announcement. Data is being aggregated and sold on an individual claim basis with PII. That should be enough to make this one of the most important topics for all of the stakeholders in the collision repair industry because it impacts everyone. This issue should remain at the forefront until there is a resolution.”

“CIC is the one place for the industry to come together to discuss these extremely sensitive topics,” Risley stresses. “In fact, the CIC mission statement embodies the work of this committee: a forum where collision industry stakeholders come together to discuss issues, enhance understanding, find common ground and communicate possible solutions to the industry. The committee is still discussing and unearthing issues and is laser focused on helping the

What you learn in Vegas DOESN’T stay in Vegas. BY CHASIDY RAE SISK
9October 2022
11October 2022



As summer comes to an end and the weather begins to turn cooler, WMABA members and supporters are excited to return to the fairway for a fun-filled day of reconnecting with industry friends at the association’s 2022 Golf Outing, taking place at 9am on October 13 at the Oak Creek Golf Club in Upper Marlboro, MD.

“WMABA’s annual Golf Outing always promises a great time outdoors on the green,” WMABA Executive Director Jordan Hendler predicts. “Shop owners and other members of the collision repair industry enjoy taking a break from the chaos of the day-to-day grind to kick back and let loose for a leisurely game of golf, a little good-natured competition and a delicious meal.”

A couple things will be different this year – in addition to testing out a new venue, WMABA will kick things off with a shotgun start, concluding with a BBQ lunch and awards, allowing attendees to head home early with a full belly. But much will stay the same, including contests for Closest to the Pin and Longest Drive…there’s even a cornhole contest for those who are better with the bags than the clubs. Either way, the competition often becomes fierce.

“The prizes and recognition at the end of the day are always memorable, and with so many great prizes up for grabs, the golf tournament definitely gets a little competitive,” WMABA Board member Kris Burton (Rosslyn Auto Body; Alexandria, VA) acknowledges. “But really, these events are more about spending time with old friends and meeting new ones. It’s always good to network with other industry professionals, plus I’ve heard Oak Creek has a really nice course, and I’m excited to play somewhere new.”

Of course, not everyone’s talents are geared toward the green. There’s still plenty of opportunities for non-golfers to participate in the fun and fresh air by coming to assist throughout the day and join colleagues for lunch following the tournament – and to cheer on their co-workers as winners are announced.

“I look forward to seeing industry friends at the WMABA golf outing every year,” John Shoemaker (BASF) notes. “Since I am not much of a golfer, it gives me a chance to talk with the attendees, catch up with them and discuss issues they are facing so I can prepare solutions. My favorite part of the outing is the cornhole fundraiser, since it gives me another chance to talk with people

and see their reactions when they play.”

Funds raised at the 2022 Golf Outing benefit WMABA and the Jerry Dalton Memorial Education Fund, which supports local automotive education programs.

“WMABA plans to work with specific schools in our area to improve industry relations and job placements for students wanting to enter collision repair fields,” Hendler explains. “Our industry needs more techs, and the association wants to do our part to engage and support these upcoming collision professionals.”

A lot of effort goes into preparing for WMABA’s golf outing each year to make sure it’s the best it can be.

“Hats off to Jordan and her team,” Burton praises. “It’s always such a wellorganized event that it’s easy to forget how much hard work goes into planning and coordinating an event of this size and nature.”

But it’s a worthwhile effort that benefits the association.

“Our annual golf outing always offers an awesome day to network in a relaxing setting, and we’re hoping this year will be our best yet,” Hendler says. “We hope to have a successful, well-attended event for our local industry – something that’s both beneficial and FUN!”

Register for WMABA’s 2022 Golf Outing as an individual player ($175) or a foursome ($625) via wmaba.com/ golf-outing. Sponsorship opportunities are also available…for now! Contact jordanhendler@wmaba.com to secure a sponsorship before they’re gone.


Join the competition and take home the gold.
October 202212
13October 2022


CRASH! A typical fender bender once required a fairly basic repair, but today’s vehicles aren’t that simple – advancing technology has created ADAS, the ultimate co-driver. These systems’ ability to process information faster than humans prevents accidents, but if they are not properly scanned, calibrated and repaired after a collision, the repercussions can be catastrophic!

“ADAS calibration isn’t rocket science; it’s much more complicated than that!” quipped George Lesniak (Autel), who emphasized that it’s also a vital component to ensuring a safe repair.

“ADAS systems save lives…but once they are repaired, they have to be repaired the right way in order to do their jobs properly,” Chuck Olsen (AirPro Diagnostics) stressed.

That begins with pre- and post-repair scans. According to the October 2021 “Who Pays for What?” survey on scanning and calibrations, 85.2 percent of shops prescan “all” or “most vehicles;” that number increases to 92.9 percent for post-repair scans.

But when it comes to calibrations, which I-CAR defines as “aiming, module setup, relearn, zero-point calibration, initiation or calibration is a required step following the removal, installation and/or repair of many safety and driver convenience system parts,” a different story is unfolding, and although the exact metrics vary from source to source, the overall message remains the same: auto body shops aren’t calibrating every vehicle that requires it.

“Sixty to 65 percent of vehicles that should receive a calibration didn’t, so when we ask where the industry sits on this, the numbers speak for themselves… We’re behind!” claimed Frank Terlep (Auto Techcelerators)

“The industry is missing about 85 percent of ADAS calibrations. That is, only about five percent of jobs have an entry for a calibration, when the number should be much closer to 33 percent,” shared Nick Dominato (Repairify). “If you’ve got a model year 2020 vehicle, there’s about a 50-50 chance that it requires at least one ADAS calibration.”

Unfortunately, less than a third of estimates for those vehicles included a line item for calibration, according to Repairify’s analysis. CCC Intelligent Solutions’ 2021 Crash Course Midyear Report indicated fewer than 17 percent of estimates on current year or newer vehicles included an appraisal line for “calibration/ reprogram/flash.” And although the majority of respondents to the 2021 New Jersey Automotive Industry Survey reported they perform an average of two calibrations on each vehicle, just 14 percent stated they run as many calibrations as is required by the OEM.

“If you’re not following OEM repair procedures when you work with ADAS, you’re not calibrating the vehicle – you’re mis-calibrating it!” Dominato insisted.

“A calibration technician cannot rely on memorization; they need to constantly be researching and keeping on top of this evolution because things change continuously,” Olsen agreed. “From a workflow perspective, this work requires a different skillset.”

And the demand for that skillset is only going to grow with the government’s mandates related to vehicle safety forcing OEMs to include ADAS systems in virtually every new vehicle being manufactured. The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) indicated that 60 percent of registered vehicles on US roadways were equipped with at least one ADAS feature in 2021.

Yet, only 30 percent of collision shops are capable of ADAS component replacement due to complexity, expense or perceived lack of demand, reported Chris Gardner (Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers

14 October 2022

Association), expressing concern about the number of shops “working on [ADAS-equipped] vehicles without staying up-to-date on what’s changing. And that can be dangerous.”

During a shop visit and equipment demonstration six years ago, Barry Dorn (Dorn’s Body & Paint; Mechanicsville, VA) realized that his shops’ aftermarket scan tools didn’t generate all the trouble codes that applied to the vehicle in question.

“The shop is 100 percent liable for the repair, and to repair the vehicle right, we need to know everything that needs to be addressed; using the proper tools helps us do that,” Dorn says. “When we perform the repairs correctly and diagnose everything as the OEM requires, we sleep better at night because we know that we’re restored the customer’s vehicle to its safe, pre-accident condition.”

Choosing to enlist the services of a remote diagnostics service provider made things a lot easier, but “scanning and calibrating a vehicle isn’t as simple as clearing a few codes; there’s a heck of a lot more to it than that,” Dorn stresses. “It definitely is a process that takes time. You need to get your employees’ buy-in, and they need to have that moment when this all rings true for them. And we’re still not perfect at it; there are still times when things slip because there are so many moving parts.”

Dorn acknowledges that getting paid for scanning and calibrations presents its own set of challenges.

“They want to generalize and normalize the process, leaving shops feeling as though they have to just deal with it because they don’t know any better. But it’s our customers who are in jeopardy when we accept that it’s ‘not included.’ That doesn’t matter. The important thing to pay attention to is what the OE requires. That’s how we achieve safe repairs.

“Who didn’t think these vehicles would cost more to repair and recalibrate?” Dorn asks. “We all want to contain costs – myself included – but the consumers wanted these features in their cars. It’s our job to diagnose and repair them properly, and it’s up to the third-party payers to recognize what is necessary to make this possible.”

What’s the real story of calibrations? We don’t know…yet. We want to hear straight from the source – YOU! Visit https://bit.ly/TGPADASpoll to share your thoughts in a brief reader poll. We can’t wait to hear from you! H&D

Executive Director’s Thoughts

ADAS, pre- and post- scans, calibrations, and diagnostics in general doesn’t seem to even now be generating the respect and recognition is REQUIRES of our industry. We focus on structural technicians, welding or bonding special metals, and how good our estimators are at catching all the “additional items”, but the real potential culprits or even opportunity lies in the area of on-board electronics systems. National level meetings discuss this relentlessly and it’s only going to get

Weigh in by taking our calibrations survey! -Jordan Hendler
15October 2022
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THANKS YOU WMABA WMABA thanks their generous supporters of the Corporate Sponsor Program for 2022! We encourage YOUR SUPPORT of those who SUPPORT US! For more information about the sponsorship program, please contact Executive Director Jordan Hendler at (804) 789-9649 or email jordanhendler@ wmaba.com www.wmaba.com BAPS Auto Paints & Supply Certified Automotive Parts Association FinishMaster National Coatings and Supplies LEVEL 1 LEVEL 2 17October 2022
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Training. Every profession changes and requires ongoing education to some degree, but these days, few industries are experiencing an incessant flux of advancing technology quite as dynamic as auto body shops have seen in recent years…which experts predict will continue for some time.

The best-known training option for collision repairers - right now - is I-CAR (the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair). As “an international not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing the information, knowledge and skills required to perform complete, safe and quality repairs,” I-CAR’s mission is to “deliver increasingly accessible, on-demand and relevant education, knowledge, services and solutions for the collision repair interindustry.”

According to their website, “Ongoing changes in OEM technology, materials, manufacturing capabilities and standards make I-CAR more relevant than ever to the collision repair Inter-Industry.”

But is that true?

After hearing several auto body professionals cast aspersions on I-CAR’s relevance, value and motivations, Hammer & Dolly reached out to I-CAR CEO and President John S. Van Alstyne, who agreed to discuss some of the concerns shops have been voicing.

Hammer & Dolly: I-CAR has been making a lot of waves lately. You recently opened the Chicago Technical Center, and at the Society of Collision Repair Specialists’ (SCRS) recent meeting, Bud Center (I-CAR) mentioned soliciting industry feedback as part of efforts to enhance your curriculum. How is I-CAR using their customers’ feedback to make training more specific, detailed and relevant?

John Van Alstyne: I-CAR develops its curriculum in close collaboration with the inter-industry, significantly including collision repair shops, through our Voice of the Customer (VOC) processes. We engage members of the collision inter-industry (repairers, OEMs, insurers, suppliers, services and educators) to create loops for

input and feedback. Through our Industry Knowledge and Skills protocol, we determine whether a course is needed, consider credentialing impact and build or update the course. Industry professionals help us test and pilot the new course for quality and relevancy before its launch.

At the end of 2019, we launched a complete overhaul of our educational program, developed directly based on feedback and input from the industry to ensure current relevancy, eliminate courseto-course redundancies and increase efficiencies through course design and new delivery methods with the goal of improving the overall student experience. We engaged different stakeholders, including a wide cross-section of SCRS shops and others across the country, to review our intended program and course adjustments – and we made significant enhancements to our previous offering.

We’re requiring more online courses, less classroom time and more in-shop training focused on the increasing number of skills relevant to complete, safe and quality repairs today and tomorrow. For a typical shop of nine employees in the four key roles (Structural, Non-Structural, Estimator, Refinish), the former curriculum would have required 236 hours’ worth of non-skills courses to reach ProLevel® 3, but by tightening efficiencies, we’ve reduced that time to 139 hours, allowing technicians to learn what they need to know with less impact to the shop workflow. Skills courses increase that time – and yes, we’ve added more, including MIG brazing and spot welding, at the industry’s demands. Our curriculum has been driven by advances in vehicle technology and repair methods, so we provide more training in the skills needed, while we cover the other knowledge areas in a much more efficient way to save time for busy shops.

It’s also important to recognize that a single course is not representative of an entire portfolio or complete credential. Our program is designed to progressively and logically build knowledge and skills, equipping people to develop and do the right things. Our 2019 redesign implemented the

foundational principle of “recognizing existing knowledge” before jumping into training. Technicians accrue knowledge through experience and training, whether with I-CAR or our Alliance partners, so we maintain their historical records, and since 2019, we now get direct data feeds from our Alliance partners. This combined history gives us the starting point for the technician and shop journey to Platinum™ ProLevel 3 and thus shops’ path to Gold Class. We also offer “In-Shop Knowledge Assessments” where an I-CAR assessor meets with students in-shop and extends credit for ProLevel 1 knowledge areas the student demonstrates competency in. This can shorten the timeline to Platinum and Gold Class, while ensuring we minimize the need for potentially redundant training.

H&D: The biggest complaint we’ve heard from shops is that obtaining I-CAR Gold Class is too expensive and lacks value for the investment being made since I-CAR doesn’t publish a list, insurers don’t seek out Gold Class shops and consumers don’t know the difference. How do you respond to shops’ belief that I-CAR training is too expensive?

JVA: Over the past decade, the cost to repair has gone up for a number of reasons, largely related to advancing technology –and the industry’s interest in complete, safe and quality repairs for the ultimate benefit of the consumer. The cost of training has

Answering collision shops’ questions. BY CHASIDY RAE SISK
21October 2022



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23October 2022

increased because of the same dynamics. Our actual pricing has not gone up…in fact, it has effectively gone down in most cases! We now offer an UNLIMITED training subscription option (excluding skills courses), allowing all shop employees to train as much as they wish and mitigating the risk of extra spending due to technician turnover – a cost savings for the shop while building broader shopwide competencies. That said, there’s a different mix of courses with different pricing for online, classroom and skills courses, all of which relate directly to the associated costs for delivering that course. We require more skills courses that are taken in the shop to provide that hands-on training that techs need specific to their role.

a revamp to our welding program, decreasing the period of reverification from five to three years since the five-year period was deemed too long given learning retention, age and health which can all impact welding quality. But after taking the base course, reverification is a simpler process, at a significantly lower price point (compared to taking the entire course again, as formerly required). Shops will also enjoy an associated savings from a production time standpoint since the reverification course is shorter, but shops likely aren’t fully seeing that yet. We did increase the base one-student price to cover our cost, but the upcharge for extra students dropped by 50 percent. As a result, for our average Gold Class shop with two structural techs, the cost to train both did not change.

Another factor impacting cost is the level of training now required. Whereas we previously only required one person to be credentialed in each of the four key roles (and one person could hold all four), the inter-industry deemed this inadequate, and we now require credentialing at a higher level: 100 percent of structural technicians and 50 percent of estimators, non-structural and refinish techs; one person may hold no more than two roles. So, while our pricing has improved, the total cost is up; however, benchmarking against similar educational programs indicates that we’ve stayed very competitive, and we remain focused on making it as affordable as possible.

Our informational services through Repairability Technical Support (RTS) are free to those who train with I-CAR. Also, we absolutely do publish a list of Gold Class shops (bodyshopology.com), which is used by insurers and OEMs to research for potential network additions. Over the years, we’ve collaborated with multiple OEMs to help them identify, engage with and build their networks by virtue of our Gold Class population, which today numbers just under 9,000 shops in the US.

H&D: Shops are saying the opposite: They claim that the costs have increased, specifically for the welding program.

JVA: That’s true; the cost of the welding program has gone up, largely due to the level of training. Our 2019 updates included

Implementing “scaling of training levels” in 2019 also impacted welding competencies required. Before, only one structural technician in a shop needed to be certified; now, 100 percent of a shop’s structural technicians must receive and maintain welding certifications for a shop to achieve or maintain Gold Class status. So, depending on the size of the shop, it may be more expensive, but VOC participants took that into consideration and determined that it was more important to elevate the level of training in collision shops. Repairers and OEMs advocated for scaling to ensure every Gold Class shop has an appropriate level of trained professionals. Our Sustaining Partners have helped offset the training costs, and through their support, we’ve been able to waive all shop fees for Alliance credits. And on a side note, our Sustaining Partners program has also allowed us to eliminate curriculum licensing fees for upwards of 250 Career Technical Schools that participate in our Fixed Training Site program for live classroom delivery, despite being shut out of these schools since March 2020.

H&D: The Alliance and Sustaining Partners programs might be more beneficial to shops if a large number of OEMs participated. Shops feel they’re often duplicating efforts to take extensive training through an OEM…only to be required to take a less-focused version to maintain their I-CAR status. If OEMs are the experts, shouldn’t their courses be sufficient?

JVA: While we have a portfolio of resources available for shops, we are also focused on strong collaboration with OEMs. We rely on their expertise from an engineering and technical perspective and refer the industry to OEM repair procedures in all of our courses and technical messaging – we 100 percent advocate the use of current OEM procedures as the starting point for repairs. I-CAR collaborates with OEMs on many fronts, but not all OEs offer training, and even fewer offer a program as comprehensive as I-CAR offers; thus I-CAR performs a real value-added service for those that don’t by providing the core training that most have adopted as their baseline, or complete, training requirement for network participation. Other OEMs that do offer training often require Gold Class as a baseline which their courses build upon.

For the OEMs that offer their own training, we offer cross-credit through the Alliance program, but unfortunately, we don’t have all

“Our actual pricing has not gone up…in fact, it has effectively gone down in most cases! [but] there’s a different mix of courses with different pricing...
So, while our pricing has improved, the total cost is up.”
24 October 2022

the OEMs in there yet. We’ve had a challenging time gaining OEM participation in our Sustaining Partner program which has been our mechanism to also enable Alliance participation. Ford is a Sustaining Partner, and we have a total of 49 Sustaining Partners. We understand their reticence; and I-CAR does believe it’s important to engage more vehicle manufacturers in our Alliance program as a first priority, thus we’re actually planning to make changes in the upcoming months to attract more Alliance partners, OEMs included. We’re exploring offering Training Alliance independently to those that have not yet adopted the Sustaining Partners program, as an initial step toward Sustaining Partner. We hope this will attract more OEMs to the Alliance program, providing the opportunity to transfer more credits that repairers have already acquired and allowing us to better recognize technicians’ existing knowledge, one of our educational programming goals. We’re looking at different approaches to make it more appealing for the OEMs and more beneficial for the shops.

H&D: While we’re on the topic of who best knows how to repair vehicles, some collision repair professionals also take issue with the emphasis on cycle time and being taught to work with “insurance partners.” If I-CAR is training collision repair shops to perform safe, proper repairs, why hire insurance representatives who emphasize following OEM procedures –only to deny those same processes on an estimate mere days later?

JVA: I sense some of this is a flashback to prior years. Since most of our courses are now online, we only have a handful of insurers doing (instructor-led, web-based) I-CAR training. Most of our on-site skills courses require technical skills like MIG brazing and welding, thus teachers are typically former technicians and welding experts.

As far as “cycle time,” we consider cycle time to be an important dimension of the business process, whether you’re operating a repair facility, a manufacturer or a restaurant. Customers only wish to wait so long, and cycle time impacts many operational and financial outcomes. I relate cycle time in our industry to my experience in the OEM world prior to my I-CAR days. We operated under lean principles that required us to gear all operations involved in meeting customer demand around the notion of TACT time (units of output/ time), but while we had TACT time targets, these never superseded the prerequisites of technical accuracy, quality, etc., which were required to remain in business…you need to do it all in a balanced manner to have a viable business model. It’s about running an effective business and meeting customer needs.

In regard to the direction insurers may give shops, we’re not involved with insurers at that level. It’s kind of the great industry fallacy that I-CAR is in the back pocket of the insurers. It’s complete nonsense. We have three insurers, three OEMs and four repairers on our Board; our insurance reps are assuredly interested in having shops do good work, and they don’t unduly influence our programming to the detriment of repairers or OEMs. I-CAR stands for complete, safe and quality repairs, and our Board reads our vision statement at every meeting.

H&D: So, how else does I-CAR create value for shops?

JVA: I-CAR does everything we can to help shops, and we remain committed to ensuring our program remains relevant, adjusting initiatives based on industry feedback. Now, could we do it better? Of course we can, and we are committed to continuous improvement, a required component of our recently-earned IACET (International Accreditors of Continuing Education and Training Providers) accreditation, which requires us to follow strict process controls and undergo third-party audits to ensure we’re following best practices. As such, the industry can look forward to a few adjustments we will be announcing shortly, based on VOC garnered over the past year as the transition to our updated programming continues through the end of 2022 and then moves forward steady-state.

Our customer care team is our primary form of outreach to our customers, and they stay in contact with shops all year, though the second half of the year is usually focused on scheduling training to prepare for renewals. An obstacle we run into is a lack of responsiveness from shops; we leave messages, but callbacks often don’t occur…and we get that – shops are busy. But waiting until the last minute makes it difficult to react and support them effectively. Shops can also request to schedule face-to-face meetings with our field team, when necessary.

We also support the collision industry through RTS, which is free. While our online shop portal, MyI-CAR, offers business support, “Ask I-CAR” (our RTS portal and technical call center service) provides real-time technical support for shops that are struggling with a repair and need guidance. Through “Ask I-CAR,” our team coaches the shop through the process – they’ll even coordinate directly with the OEM to find any missing information and be the conduit between shops and OEs in that manner.

I-CAR recently announced a new initiative we’ve undertaken with the Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF): the Industry Talent Programming initiative. We want to help the industry attract entry-level-ready talent across various channels by creating consistency in the industry’s image. We’ll offer marketing assets for shops and schools to use in their areas, create job boards and recraft our school curriculum to help schools improve (targeting to launch updated school curriculum in the 2023-2024 school year). We’ll also make the school curriculum available to shops that wish to develop their own entry-level technicians internally, and related, we intend to create an industry apprenticeship program. Since shops need help with retention, we also plan to offer HR best practices/ training and mentoring programming, which we have found to be a key success criteria for entry-level technician success. As an industry, we need to attract more talent, but importantly, we need to retain our talent. To help offset the cost, we plan to pursue large foundation and government grants, and although it’s likely that there

25October 2022



will be a nominal fee structure for shops and schools, we’re doing everything possible to prevent it from being burdensome or onerous.

When I-CAR coined the phrase ‘Technical Tsunami’ a decade ago, we knew that advancing technology would require a step up in knowledge, skills proficiency and business sophistication. That tsunami is rolling over the collision industry right now. At the end of the day, the level of training has increased as defined by the industry in response to the technological changes in vehicles. Training is an important component of running any business, but in collision repair,

technicians need to be educated to perform safe and proper repairs. Ensuring customers’ safety and avoiding liability depends on those competencies. Shops that embrace training will not only survive –they can also thrive because they’ll be performing safer repairs and becoming better businesses along the way. H&D

Executive Director’s Thoughts

As affiliate associations of SCRS, we were in a meeting recently where we were asked to contribute industry feedback to I-CAR . After speaking with numerous members in addition to our own Board, I had a literal arms-length list of items they wanted me to bring up. Concerns addressed in this article about price increases, welding program changes, and the like were on that list. Another item on that list - and for me personally as well - was the fact that I-CAR is designated a 501(c)6 Not for Profit Association. In my humble opinion, it doesn’t look a lot like what you would find in a not-for-profit organization, not to mention a membershipbased one. While recognizing the good things they do, we should also spend more time questioning who is driving the bus. In an association, it’s the members. Period. If the members are complaining about the “business” of the association, I think they should have the most trusted voice in the room. Members are also the “customer.” If, for example, the I-CAR spin-off of the Collision Repair Education Foundation is doing more to support schools while I-CAR sits on tens of millions in the bank, that right there is a single red flag of why the industry has, at minimum, trust issues with the largest training entity there is. -Jordan Hendler

26 October 2022
27October 2022

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28 October 2022


PRESIDENT: Steven Krieps srkrieps@live.com 304-755-1146

VICE PRESIDENT: Rodney Bolton rbolton@aacps.org 443-386-0066


Business as

Just like equipment and training, WMABA membership is not only a commitment to excellence, but also a valuable investment.

WMABA is recognized both regionally and nationally as the key forum for the exchange of ideas concerning the D.C., MD, VA and WV collision repair industry. It is the venue to discuss, learn about and impact evolving standards and policies in the technical, administrative and legislative fronts of our industry. Shops and industry supporters can best develop themselves and their employees by actively engaging in the association and its activities.

TREASURER: Kris Burton kris@Rosslynautobody.com 703-820-1800

Automotive collision repair facilities in Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington, D.C. who are willing to adopt WMABA’s Standards of Membership and offer a guarantee to their consumers are encouraged to engage their business as an active member of the association. For over 40 years, the WMABA membership of professional collision repair businesses and affiliates have committed to operating at a higher standard on behalf of their industry and their consumers. Over the years, WMABA has proudly represented the collision repair industry at hearings on Capitol Hill, in Annapolis, MD, and Richmond, VA as well as almost every national collision repair event. While WMABA has a rich history of dedicated men and women serving the local collision repair community, WMABA also boasts numerous past and current accomplished Board members who represent our membership at the national level.

WMABA offers current and dynamic discussion forums on topics facing collision repairers, technical information and educational seminars, opportunities to network and discuss pressing topics with leaders of the collision repair industry, an arbitration program that works with consumers to help resolve issues they might have, apprenticeship programs, legislative representation and the ability to receive and contribute to one of the nation’s leading collision repair magazines, Hammer & Dolly

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: Jordan Hendler jordanhendler@wmaba.com 804-789-9649

29October 2022 “ ”
Contact Executive Director Jordan Hendler to find out how WMABA can amplify YOUR voice in the collision repair industry.
a Leader! An association fostering the exchange of ideas and providing a voice and support for the collision repair professional. BOARD OF DIRECTORS SECRETARY: Phil Rice phil@ricewoods.com 540-846-6617 PAST PRESIDENT: Torchy Chandler torchy.chandler@gmail.com 410-309-2242 Bill Hawkins hawkinswilliamjr@gmail.com 510-915-2283 Barry Dorn bdorn@dornsbodyandpaint.com 804-746-3928 John Shoemaker john.a.shoemaker@basf.com 248-763-4375


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30 October 2022



industry understand where there are potential breaks in the chain of custody and where they may have exposure. As we continue down this path, solutions will surface, and it’s our goal to share those to the benefit of all industry stakeholders.”

Who would have ever believed repairers would get excited at the word “study”? During one of the most highly-anticipated discussions at CIC, Schulenburg and a panel of participants will present the results of SCRS’ week-long blend study, which was conducted the last week of August at the Global Finishing Solutions (GFS) Center for Excellence in Osseo, WI with participation from AkzoNobel, Axalta, BASF, PPG and Sherwin-Williams, with parts donated by Ford.

SCRS initiated the blend study in response to members routinely indicating the blend values found in information providers’ databases are not reflective of the actual task.

“For a long time, SCRS has contended that blending a panel takes more skill and near-equal amounts of time as it does to apply refinish across an entire outer surface of a panel,” Schulenburg says. “Similarly, members have expressed that the 50 percent formula of the full refinish value is not reflective of the necessary tasks to prepare, apply product and facilitate an invisible transition. We’ve routinely communicated this on behalf of the industry to each of the information providers, and yet the 50 percent formula persists.”

And no year of school would be complete without a report card. But the pupils being graded won’t be shops – each year, CRASH Network conducts an annual survey, the “Insurer Report Card,” allowing shops to grade the insurers they interact with from A+ to F, “based on how well those insurers’ claims processes ensure quality repairs and services,” explains John Yoswick (CRASH Network).

“We also capture WHY shops give some insurers lower grades. The findings are surprising at times; they’re often unrelated to the insurers’ payment practices. And though the reasons for poor grades can vary from one insurer to another, a lot of the problems are process-driven,” he adds. “At CIC, I’ll be sharing some findings that demonstrate how even just some basic changes to an insurer’s process could potentially improve its relationships with shops.”

Shops that can’t get enough schooling will definitely want to sign up for SCRS’ Repairer Driven Education series, a five-day schedule of courses led by some of the industry’s most well-informed minds, including Danny Gredinberg (Database Enhancement Gateway), Tim Ronak (AkzoNobel) and John Shoemaker (BASF), beginning Monday, October 31 and extending through the end of the Show. (Check out our coverage in the August issue of Hammer & Dolly at bit.ly/Hammer0822, and stay tuned next month for some tips on all the collision happenings you won’t want to miss!)

Class Dismissed!

But all work and no play makes for a dull trip to the Entertainment Capital of the World. CIC’s day of education concludes with a reception that offers a chance to unplug, unwind…and maybe

even wine a little.

The most-talked-about collision networking event during SEMA, the SCRS RDE Afterparty gives collision repairers a chance to rise to new heights…literally! The two-story, 12,600 square foot Versailles Sky Villa is located on the 30th floor of the Westgate, and in addition to providing amazing views of the Strip, it gives guests a great opportunity to relax and catch up with industry friends.

“SEMA Week is a great place to connect to a variety of partners and industry stakeholders,” Tinsley notes.

“I always look forward to meeting with industry leaders and reconnecting with friends at SEMA,” Risley agrees. “One of my mentors routinely states, ‘The world is run by those who show up.’ That said, being in Las Vegas provides all of us an opportunity to be a part of those conversations, listen, have a voice and engage with those influencing the direction of the industry.”

Repairers have a chance to celebrate those influencers on Wednesday morning during the fifth annual Collision Industry Red Carpet Awards breakfast as numerous leaders are honored for their contributions to the collision repair industry.

Those dedicated to the industry’s future generation will definitely want to check out the Collision Repair Education Foundation’s (CREF) reception, held in the West Hall Atrium November 1 from 7-9pm, where CREF will showcase the talented career and tech students whose designs advanced to the final round in its Art Meets Automotive contest this year. Find out what inspires them (the theme of the contest); more details are available at bit.ly/CREF22SEMA

Acknowledged as one of the world’s largest and most exciting automotive shows, SEMA 2022 will be held November 1-4, and hotels are running out of space fast. Don’t miss your chance to participate in the most relevant education, training, discussions and networking available to the industry.

Automotive and collision industry professionals can register for the 2022 SEMA Show at semashow.com. Sign up for SCRS’ RDE series at scrs.com/rde, and visit ciclink.com to secure your seat at CIC.

Don’t be a dunce…Make plans for SEMA 2022 today! H&D

Executive Director’s Thoughts

The week at SEMA, with the CIC meeting as well as the SCRS Repairer Driven Education, is something that you can only experience to understand. It’s a week of learning, networking, ooh-ing and aah-ing. You’ll see famous personalities from inside and outside the industry, and you’ll make connections with people you’ve “only talked to on the phone” but never had the chance to meet. I can’t say enough how much an industry week like this can change your perspective completely. If you have not yet made your plans, it’s never too late to make the right decision to come!

31October 2022



How Disruptive Will the Future Actually Be?

This month, we “ASK MIKE” for his thoughts on future disruptions that could drastically change the industry. We at Hammer & Dolly hope you find the following exchange useful, and we encourage you to reach out to us if you have a question for Mike on this or any industryrelated matter that he can answer in a future issue.

Hammer & Dolly: The collision industry is in a state of constant change. What are some future disruptions you expect to impact the collision repair world, and what can shops do in advance of these changes to prepare for them and ultimately take advantage of them?

Mike Anderson: There are good and bad things that could happen. Number one: there are a lot of non-DRP shops that are profitable because of storage and teardown fees on total losses. Whether we like it or not, I truly believe that we are going to see artificial intelligence identify total losses. When that happens, that vehicle will not go to the shop; it’s going straight to auction. Those shops that are profitable only because they’re being paid a lot for storage and teardown are going to see that money go away. They’re really going to be in a bad position, because they’ll have to figure out how to make that money back. I’m not saying it’s wrong to make money off storage and teardown, but losing that revenue could be destructive to a business if it can’t make enough money from regular body work. Shops

need to make sure their business models of profitability are not 100 percent based on total losses and storage. We have to be cognizant of that.

Whenever I’m talking to someone during training we do, I say, ‘There are 400 pages of OEM repair procedures to replace this quarter panel. How come you didn’t pull all of that?’ People usually tell me they didn’t have enough time to do it or didn’t know about it. We have to figure out, as collision repairers, how to embrace technology to give our employees more time back. We need to ask ourselves how we give our employees more time back and what they could do with that time. They could spend more time looking up OEM repair procedures or following up on receivables. When a new technology or new software program rolls out, we always talk about what it won’t do. We need to say, ‘Okay, it’s not perfect today, but what could this lead to in the future? How could it benefit us?’

Customer expectations are going to continue to evolve. For example, a $7 prescription from CVS can be delivered to their house for free. I get groceries delivered to my house for free. When we do a $4,000 repair, someone has to leave work early to get their car. It’s just a matter of time before consumers demand white glove concierge service in collision repair. The customer experience is going to continue to be shaped by other industries – Amazon Prime, Uber and companies like that. More and more shops that have been DRPs forever are coming to the conclusion that they have to charge the customer the difference for what it takes to properly repair a vehicle. You’re going to see more customers having to pay out of pocket – not just for their deductibles, but for additional funds as well. That’s just the nature of the beast.

32 October 2022

H&D: Many people in this industry talk about the future bringing new challenges and technologies that shops will need to adapt to in order to survive. None of us have a crystal ball, but do you see things coming down the road that could make life easier for a body shop?

MA: Everything ebbs and flows. Vehicles are already complex, but as they continue to become more complex, you’re going to see the required skill sets of technicians increase. With that, you’re going to see wages get adjusted accordingly. We’re going to have to do something to attract the right people. We’ve already seen that; some of the major MSOs are saying, ‘Hey, we’re going to have to raise our

Mike Anderson is an Accredited Automotive Manager (AAM) and the former owner of Wagonwork Collision Centers, two highly acclaimed shops located in Alexandria, VA. He has served as a member of many industry organizations throughout his career, including the WMABA Board of Directors, the Mitchell Advisory Board, the MOTOR Advisory Board, the ASE Test Review Committee, the National Auto Body Council, the Collision Industry Conference and the Society of Collision Repair Specialists. Additionally, he is a past Virginia SkillsUSA chairman, serves as a facilitator for Axalta Coating Systems’ highly recognized Business Council 20 Groups in both the US and Canada and facilitates numerous courses for Axalta Coating Systems’ Educational Series. He currently offers expert industry consulting via his latest venture, Collision Advice (collisionadvice.com).

prices because we can’t afford to pay people.’ Our industry will get back to where we were. My dad used to tell me that the labor rate for body work was always higher than mechanical work. Then, it went the other way. But as we see fewer parts that need to be repaired and more parts that need to be replaced, that will need to be offset by additional labor operations or even rates in general. The industry is going to have to shift back the other way. It’s just inevitable. It’s the only way shops will be able to survive.

H&D: Of course, insurers will need to make that change right along with the shops.

MA: Yes. Insurers are going to need to get smarter and re-think ways to determine premiums by involving OEMs and the right collision repairers and say, ‘Okay, what’s it going to take to fix this vehicle?’ They will become a little more realistic about what needs to happen. I also believe those days of attempting to control severity to reduce the amount they pay out on a claim are over; the insurers need to look inside their own operations for cost or expense savings and how to become more efficient – just as shops have had to do over the years. H&D

33October 2022
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