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Certification – Safety, Customer Service And Business Style

A significant component of repair facility certification by non OEM aligned certifying bodies (CCIAP is the national example in Canada) is customer service and the appearance of customer areas. Pictures of the customer washroom are always asked for.

In 2021, this is missing the point. These organizations should be verifying the important things that car owners cannot see or be expected to understand. They can all see the office and decide if they like it, none of them can see the spot welder and know what the gun pressure is. The certification should be verifying the ability to perform correct repairs and leave judgement of customer satisfaction and business style to the marketplace. It is unlikely that a facility that can meet the requirements for safe repairs will have a scruffy looking front office and impolite staff. If they do the potential customer can see that and will probably not do business there. Or maybe it will not bother them, and they will stay. 

“The objective of accreditation is … to provide a safe repair.”

There is also the 2021 reality of Online Reviews. This is where potential customers will look for insight on how other people feel about the facility. Customer service, in all its aspects will be well covered in these reviews.

The objective of accreditation is not to standardize the overall experience to the customer, but to provide a safe repair. With demonstrated ability to provide that safe repair as a base the business owner should be free to participate in the market with whatever style they chose.

OEM certifications are not the same as a non-aligned certifying organization and these OEM certifications often have a strong overlay of marketing in these programs. Just as a manufacturer will have service and appearance standards for their dealerships they may have these types of standards for their certified repair facilities. 

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