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Blogs - Associated Collision Center
The Parts Shortage in 2022

The Parts Shortage in 2022

Associated Collision Center wants you to be safe and aware, this blog contains great info on The Parts Shortage in 2022.

2021 was a challenging year for industries across the country. It hit the parts and service industries especially hard. And it may get worse in the coming months, extending into next year. Kaylee Felio, Sales and Marketing Manager for Parts Edge, joins Corey to talk about what’s going on. She explains why the supply chain issues persist and what dealerships can do to retain their customers and their satisfaction scores in the middle of a supply chain crisis.

The Outlook for Parts & Service Industries in 2022

Shutdowns ended up delaying everything, especially at an international level. Global suppliers couldn’t get goods shipped out at their normal rates. That meant dealerships and customers were waiting for much longer than normal for shipments of parts.
The outlook for 2022 is going to be more of the same. Global shutdowns have (for the most part) come to an end, so manufacturers are once again shipping items out. It’s now the carriers at the end of the supply chain that are having issues because there simply aren’t enough drivers to go around. The supply chain is now broken in those final miles, between getting parts from the dock to the parts department door. That means parts managers are spending more of their time tracking parts and making claims on a daily basis.

It’s not just obscure parts that dealerships are waiting on, either. Dealerships are running out of parts that are so common, no one ever expected them to run low. Who thought air filters would ever be hard to come by?

What Parts Managers Can Do to Mitigate Supply Issues

The broken supply chain issue shouldn’t be solely on the shoulders of the parts manager to overcome, especially when there is no playbook for a situation like this. Most parts managers understand how to deal with inventory management and handling the parts once they get to the dealership. But if the parts aren’t there, what can they do?
This is when the dealership needs to come together as a whole. As a team, the dealership must understand what issues every department is facing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. To do that, dealerships will need to:

  • Remove the blame. You won’t do anyone any favors–including your customers–by blaming one department or the other. Work with sister stores or friends in the industry to create mutual support networks that could help you overcome current challenges. They may be able to share parts or even mentor new parts managers in how to handle shortages.
  • Create a structure for communicating with customers. Be honest with your customers about what’s happening. If you are upfront and honest with them, most of them will understand why a part isn’t available for their vehicle.

What Dealer Principals Can Do to Help

In a recent poll, PartsEdge asked parts managers that if they could have more of anything, what would it be? Thirty-nine percent of those surveyed said that they’d have more staff, and 46 percent said that they’d have more time. Parts managers are spread thin, and they aren’t just managing inventory anymore. They are dealing with shortages in both their supply chain and in their workforce. Those issues aren’t coming to an end anytime soon, either. At the earliest, says Kaylee, it will be the third quarter of this year, but it’s likely to last longer.
That means tensions are high in dealerships and could remain high without dealer principal intervention. combat growing tensions, they can:

  • Make sure departments understand the challenges that other departments are facing. Encourage them to find ways to support one another and create a unified front for the customers.
  • Beware of employee burnout. That might mean doing things like scaling back hours, eliminating Saturday hours for parts and service.
  • Support parts managers as much as possible. This is especially true for new managers. The situation is frustrating for everyone and giving them a chance to vent can go a long way towards easing tension.

The Takeaway

So, what can dealerships and parts managers do to provide a superior level of customer service during this supply chain crisis? Kaylee recommends:

  • More meetings. Keep everyone up to date on supply chain issues and what’s happening now and in the future. That will keep everyone on the same page and ease tension between departments.
  • Find additional support for your teams. That might be downloading an e-book for them or finding mentors in sister stores. Whatever you can do to give them more support will go a long way towards avoiding burnout.
  • Stay positive. It might be difficult, but a good attitude will help everyone get through this tough time.

Want even more insight from Kaylee on the supply chain crisis? Head to our YouTube channel for the full video interview of her latest Fixed Ops 5 episode with host Corey Smith. And be sure to subscribe to the YouTube channel as well as to the Fixed Ops 5podcast on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen, so you never miss a new episode!

What to know more? please visit our last month’s blog Acting on ADAS. A complete Blog can be found here.

 

Acting on ADAS

Acting on ADAS

Associated Collision Center wants you to be safe, here is some important information about Advance Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) that we want you to be aware as you drive cars equipped with these systems.

Keeping that in mind, another important area of advancement for consideration is advanced driver assistance systems. Along with all of the conversation surrounding EVs, ADAS is also undoubtedly a hot topic right now.

Some shops are leaning into it, and some are leaning away. But what aspects should shops really be focusing on? Seyfer says it depends on your shop’s discipline.

“If you’re in the collision industry, you need to be aware. You need to be capable of providing service for those by whatever means you do it,” Seyfer says. “But for general repair shops … those vehicles can’t be aligned without some kind of calibration, and that will change as more and more dynamic cars come online. But you still have to calibrate them.”

Understanding ADAS calibration and repair procedures is crucial if you don’t want to be turning away repairs. In order to avoid miscommunication with a customer, Seyfer says it’s important to be well-versed on the processes and procedures ahead of time. Put in the work to understand ADAS, and it will pay off.

“If you’re still thinking that this is a trend that is not going to go on or these cars will be completely self calibrating, that’s not actually going to be the case,” Seyfer says.

Seyfer goes on to say that another step worth taking involves customer education. Currently, ADAS has the potential to interfere with how a driver performs on the road. That is to say that these systems are not perfect, even if they are well intended. Seyfer is hopeful that in the future ADAS will only help and not cause distractions for drivers.

“They know it’s there, but I don’t think they have any idea in most cases what’s involved in making those systems work properly after what they would consider a simple operation like an alignment,” Seyfer says of general customer knowledge on ADAS. “As a repair shop, you have to be aware of this.”

This also ties into who is hired on as technicians. Who are the people in your shop educating the customers and doing these complex repairs?

The labor shortage throughout the industry right now certainly does not make this question any easier to consider, but Seyfer has an idea of the right approach, which unsurprisingly has to do with shedding perspective on the situation.

“Where I would be focusing is that technician/IT mindset,” Seyfer says. “Because everything on the cars anymore is on the network in some way, shape or form. So, someone’s got to be able to service the network.”

Donny Seyfer, executive officer for NASTF,

For more information please visit our Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) blog, and please visit our great Blogs page here.

Advanced Driver Assistance Systems

Advanced Driver Assistance Systems

Associated Collision Center wants you to be safe, here is some important information about Advance Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) that we want you to be aware as you drive cars equipped with these systems.

Keeping that in mind, another important area of advancement for consideration is advanced driver assistance systems. Along with all of the conversation surrounding EVs, ADAS is also undoubtedly a hot topic right now.

Some shops are leaning into it, and some are leaning away. But what aspects should shops really be focusing on? Seyfer says it depends on your shop’s discipline.

“If you’re in the collision industry, you need to be aware. You need to be capable of providing service for those by whatever means you do it,” Seyfer says. “But for general repair shops … those vehicles can’t be aligned without some kind of calibration, and that will change as more and more dynamic cars come online. But you still have to calibrate them.”

Understanding ADAS calibration and repair procedures is crucial if you don’t want to be turning away repairs. In order to avoid miscommunication with a customer, Seyfer says it’s important to be well-versed on the processes and procedures ahead of time. Put in the work to understand ADAS, and it will pay off.

“If you’re still thinking that this is a trend that is not going to go on or these cars will be completely self calibrating, that’s not actually going to be the case,” Seyfer says.

Seyfer goes on to say that another step worth taking involves customer education. Currently, ADAS has the potential to interfere with how a driver performs on the road. That is to say that these systems are not perfect, even if they are well intended. Seyfer is hopeful that in the future ADAS will only help and not cause distractions for drivers.

“They know it’s there, but I don’t think they have any idea in most cases what’s involved in making those systems work properly after what they would consider a simple operation like an alignment,” Seyfer says of general customer knowledge on ADAS. “As a repair shop, you have to be aware of this.”

This also ties into who is hired on as technicians. Who are the people in your shop educating the customers and doing these complex repairs?

The labor shortage throughout the industry right now certainly does not make this question any easier to consider, but Seyfer has an idea of the right approach, which unsurprisingly has to do with shedding perspective on the situation.

“Where I would be focusing is that technician/IT mindset,” Seyfer says. “Because everything on the cars anymore is on the network in some way, shape or form. So, someone’s got to be able to service the network.”

Donny Seyfer, executive officer for NASTF,

For other great articles please take a moment and visit our Blogs page here.

How to report an accident and file a claim

How to report an accident and file a claim

Associated Collision is here to help you every step of the way, but knowing what to do at the scene of the accident is an important part of filing a claim and, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III), it can help speed things along when you do. Here are some basic steps to take at the scene:

  • Call The Police To Report The Accident And Any Injuries.
    First, check to see if you or anyone else involved in the accident has any injuries. Call 911 if someone needs medical attention. If no one is injured, you can call the local police to report the accident. The police may send out an officer, or direct you to the station to file a report. Be sure to ask how you can get a copy of the police report (your insurance company will likely need it).
  • Exchange Information And Take Notes.
    Share insurance, contact and vehicle information with any other drivers. And then snap pictures, video and if you have cameras on-board, please make sure you save the video and note accident details and jot down the names and phone numbers of any witnesses. It can also be helpful to take notes about the accident, including details such as what occurred, road conditions and relevant details of the scene. Your notes may be helpful for your insurance provider as they investigate the accident.
  • Protect Your Car From Further Damage.
    Get your car off the road, if possible, or set up flares or reflectors so you are more visible to other drivers, the III says.
  • Call Your Insurance Agent As Soon As Possible — Regardless Of Who’s At Fault.
    It’s important to contact your insurance agent after an accident, regardless of how minor the accident may have been, says the III. If the other party or their insurance provider calls, your insurer may be at a disadvantage if they are unaware you were involved in an accident. Your agent will ask a few questions, explain what your policy covers and what deductible you’ll have to pay. Then, typically, you’ll have to submit a claim.
  • Remember You Have The Option.
    The option to have your car repairs done by experts, here at Associate Collision we take pride and joy when we repair your car and we can see your smile of approval. Please call us at 210.828.6258 or send us a message and we can make arrangements to take care of you and your car each and every step of the way.
Working from home and not driving as much

Working from home and not driving as much

Working from home and not driving as much during Covid? this is the perfect time to take care of that little dent that annoys you so much. We at Associated Collision can schedule your car for service, work with your insurance company and even assist you with rental car needs. We will give you an estimated completion date and confirm pickup time. We believe that keeping you informed of repair progress helps with your schedule and expectations that you can truly appreciate.

You will be happy that you called, from the minute the process starts to the day that your car is scheduled for your arrival—we strive in attention to details as we are here to restore your car to its original condition, so taking advantage of low car usage could be the perfect time to silence that annoying little dent .

We encourage to read our We Pride Ourselves on Returning Your Vehicle in Clean and Sanitary Condition blog for further information on High touch points.

We Pride Ourselves on Returning Your Vehicle in Clean and Sanitary Condition

We Pride Ourselves on Returning Your Vehicle in Clean and Sanitary Condition

At Associated Collision Center we pride ourselves on returning your vehicle to you in clean and Sanitary.  Amidst everything going on in the world today, we are taking additional steps to ensure your vehicle is returned to your safe.  All vehicles are clean and sanitized before calling the customer that vehicle is ready for delivery. In addition, we are wiping down all touch surfaces at time of delivery to the customer.

High touch points that get additional cleaning include: steering wheel, steering column controls, all console, cup holders, touch screens, radio controls and climate controls, all air conditioning vent exhausts in the vehicle, all door handles, lock/unlock controls, all seat belts and buckles, trunk grab handles, gas caps and doors, and key fobs. As an additional measure, driver’s area is disinfected as a last step when it’s been moved to its final location and ready for you to inspect and drive home.

We encourage you to read U.S. Travel Association “Travel in the New Normal” developed based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and White House guidelines, PDF release here. https://www.ustravel.org/sites/default/files/media_root/document/HealthandSafetyGuidance.pdf