Two Organizations to Get Involved In
There are two types of people out there—joiners and followers. Joiners usually end up being leaders and followers eventually follow them, because they prefer to stay off the radar and they’re satisfied by just doing a good job. Well, that’s fine, but in the collision industry, being a joiner and finding the right organizations to be with can lead to bigger things down the road—such as increased revenues, new business alliances with vendors and insurance companies and a better connection to the industry as a whole.
Here are two nationally respected organizations that can help body shops to interact with some of the top operators in the collision repair industry, through attending events, workshops and communicating both in person and online to improve their respective businesses. It all comes down to power in numbers, and each of these two entities has the clout and ability to achieve things that shops can’t do on their own.
The Collision Industry Conference (CIC)
The Collision Industry Conference (CIC) is a forum made up of participants from all industry segments for the expressed purpose of discussing and exploring the issues that occur among them. Through discussion and research during meetings and extensive interim committee work, CIC attempts to form consensus on various issues to determine best practices, if possible. CIC is not a trade association that has membership fees, but it holds four forums annually that anyone can register to attend.
CIC forums are open to all interested professionals of all segments of the industry to include repairers, insurers, paint and material companies, equipment, vehicle manufacturers, data providers, trade school instructors, representatives of trade associations and anyone with an interest in creating a more professional industry. After every CIC forum, participants are invited to publicly address their concerns during what they call an “open microphone”.
From time to time, the Collision Industry Conference will also pursue projects and develop papers, resolutions and booklets in order to improve inter-industry communication and find solutions to the complex issues that are challenging the industry.
Some of these topics in the past have included: Minimum Recommended Requirements for a “Class A” Collision Center; Beneficial and Productive Repairer-Insurer Relationships; Guidelines for the Use of Quality Used Parts and Guidelines for Estimating and Processing Auto Physical Damage Claims. By addressing and dealing with current concerns in the industry, CIC plays an instrumental role in making the body shop business profitable and enriching for all parties involved.
Each CIC forum has a registration fee and they normally sell out fast, so check them out and see if they’re right for you. You can either call CIC at: (509) 543-7773 or visit their web site at: www.ciclink.com.
The Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS)
Through its direct members and 45 affiliate associations, the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) is made up of 6,000 collision repair businesses and 58,500 specialized professionals who work with consumers and insurance companies to repair collision-damaged vehicles.
Since 1982, SCRS has been the largest national trade association representing and 1005 committed to collision repairers throughout North America SCRS was founded with the principles that through working together, collision repair facilities could encourage positive advancement in the industry.
According to their web site, the organization’s mission is to educate, inform and represent the collision repair professional in all aspects of the industry. To achieve this, SCRS promotes supports and encourages exemplary businesses committed to the future of the collision repair industry, while providing the visibility and leadership needed to raise the professional image of the industry and advance the business conditions of those whom we represent.
One of the amazing things that SCRS does for the industry is the March Taylor Memorial Fund, which was established in 2007 to benefit collision repair technicians who are in need of financial assistance. This fund is renowned and highly-respected, because it focuses on helping technicians and sending the country a message that body shops truly do care.
For information about joining SCRS, call (877) 841-0660 or visit their web site at: www.scrs.com.
By working together, we can all be stronger and more effective in repairing collision-damaged vehicles and providing consumers with a better product. Give either of these groups a try and pretty soon you’ll realize that being involved with CIC and SCRS (or both) can benefit you in more ways than you’d ever imagine!
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