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Ring, Ring, I’m talking to YOU!

I’ve heard it all, people. The entire span from “Ya!” to “BODYSHOP!” to “Thank you for calling ABC Collision Repair, this is Susan, how may I help you today?”; it’s all over the board. Really, I think it is a measure of personal respect, the manner in which you answer your business telephone.

In this issue, we’ve talked about the first impressions made by the physical appearance of the outside and inside of your business, and your employees, but the telephone is no less important. Giving the due diligence to have a procedure for anyone answering will pay off indefinitely.

Your first impression on the end of the ringing line is a concern. It is a primary source of revenue. It’s a first line to your customer, both existing and potential. Talking to your staff – including yourself – about what takes place when you pick it up can change the dynamic of your customer base. The expectation of folks today is that any retail business should be professional, and act professionally.

What are the most important factors of answering the phone properly?

  • Identifying the business name
  • Stating the person’s name answering
  • Smiling face and cheerful tone of voice

To put it all together, put a smile on your face and say my latter example above: “Thank you for calling ABC Collision Repair, this is Susan, how may I help you today?” personalized to you of course.

Why the smile and cheerful tone? You can’t ask someone to come to work happy, but you can have an expectation that their private woes will not affect their manner in interacting with your customers. Hence, the smile, because it’s difficult to sound down while doing it. You can improve a lot by empowering those in this position with the understanding of how crucial they are to the success of the entire business.

No customer expects a receptionist to be able to answer all of their questions, but they do want a friendly voice that can assist them in a time of need. If there is not a dedicated answerer, then anyone who would ever pick up a phone should be on the same page as to how the phone will be answered. Then the team can maximize any incoming lead into new repair jobs.

Taking a few minutes to give this part of your business a mini-makeover could be more important than the sign out front.

Published in the June issue of Hammer & Dolly Magazine

By |June 1st, 2015|Categories: Executive Director, News|Comments Off on Ring, Ring, I’m talking to YOU!

CNN Reports – Are cheap repairs part of an insurance scheme?

WMABA Reviews CNN’s Collision Repair Story by Anderson Cooper

Jordan Hendler, Executive Director

VIDEO: Are cheap repairs part of an insurance scheme? – including Article.

On February 11, CNN’s Anderson Cooper aired a special expose of the collision industry during his nightly broadcast of Anderson Cooper 360, “Are Cheap Repairs Part of an Insurance Scheme?” If you have not already seen it, the video coverage can be viewed at http://cnn.it/1EZTGPa. It was a 10 minute piece that will go down in infamy for our industry, covering examples of how consumers have been harmed as a result of insurance company interjection into parts and repair service provider selection.

Covering a broad range of issues in a short amount of time, the video left one sour taste for me: the notion that all preferred shops are providing poor repair quality. We know this is simply not true. The differentiation of repairers comes at the helm of education, tooling, and dedication to providing safe, quality repairs on continuously advancing vehicle platforms with ever-increasing OEM requirements. Not whether they participate in a direct repair agreement.  There are plenty of great repairers in DRP agreements, and conversely poor examples of independents. That issue aside, WMABA is pleased that CNN has given our industry this much needed exposure.

The Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) highlighted the issue of differentiation in their review of the newscast, saying, “In a well-functioning market, those with lesser skill, lesser capability and lesser quality would be incentivized to improve because those who perform better would receive appropriately higher degrees of compensation based on skill and competition. Consumers would seemingly seek out those with the best skill set available to them, further ensuring their vehicles are safely repaired, and providing those leading repairers with greater market share. Unfortunately, insurers often refuse to recognize these gradations in the marketplace; just as they have proven not to distinguish similar gradations between part qualities.” 

Where we hope progress can be made is the incentivizing of having the proper education, tools, and equipment with a fair compensation. This emphasis, rather than the current lowest price, highest use of alternative parts, or quickest turnaround would improve the overall quality of the repair process for all parties involved, and mostly the consumer. All consumers want their car back fast, and for no additional out of pocket, but with rare exception would knowingly trade that for their safety or diminished value of their vehicle.

Once watched, how does that help us, and how can it be used for the common good?

It can be a stepping stone for other news media to give coverage to our industry. As an association, resources like this are hard to come by from an outside perspective. Especially, when they’re devoted to the position of the consumer and still convey a meaningful story. Having momentum is important for securing meetings, memberships, news sources and more, so this serves as a tremendous help in that regard. In the end of it, we utilize this material to open a door […]

By |February 23rd, 2015|Categories: News|Comments Off on CNN Reports – Are cheap repairs part of an insurance scheme?