Over the last several months the viewpoints from dismantlers, assessors and insurers regarding green parts have appeared in ATF Professional, part of this circle are the bodyshops themselves.
Are they ready for green parts or are they hesitant to embrace them? We spoke to Mike Monaghan an automotive aftermarket consultant with over 45 years of experience in the bodyshop industry and who interacts with those who receive or could be receiving green parts every day. He provides us with just some of his thoughts as to why bodyshops may still be resistant.
As an industry veteran of over 40 years, it does not surprise me, nor indeed should it surprise anyone why the take up of bodyshops using green or recycled parts has never quite been the solution many hoped it would be.
Firstly, anyone who’s been around this industry for a time will know this subject has been discussed, presented, assessed and debated for a considerable number of years.
So, why has the take-up of its potential never really achieved its objectives?
We know the whole subject matter is both complex and wide-ranging. From quality, delivery, consistency of supply and technical issues around fit and safety, to name just a few.
All of the above are factors which have equally never been fully addressed, but there have been solid improvements in that sector.
The fundamental aspects affecting the bodyshops adoption of the position is the vast number of variables which exist. Take those listed above and then add the key variables of cost and time.
Insurers want by definition to achieve standard times and prices, but with each recycled or green part, a wide number of variants exist. These are simply too many to list but range from an incorrect part to the part having poor previous repair or paint defects to hidden damage not identified by the salvage dealer.
The cause and effects at this point to the bodyshop are exponential. These events result in delays, re-ordering of parts, rescheduling of the repair, cycle times, customer contact calls and loss of revenues, none of which are recognised by the insurer or the supplier of the parts. A further replacement part will not compensate the bodyshop for his loss of time and profit, plus the additional impacts right across the bodyshop.
If the green revolution is to ever be more than a tiny part of a £5Bn industry, it will require a very honest appraisal of the cost of the parts refitment model, but on a case by case basis and this is something the insurers will struggle with as they like predictability outcomes.
With increasing technology, it’s accepted we are simply writing off too many cars and these have a very valuable supply offer to the market, but all things from policy wording, making the customer aware of what parts are being fitted, to costs of business interruption when things do not go smoothly are clear factors of consideration.
The debate will run for some time and a few will flirt with small samples of its practice, but it will never be mainstream until the above considerations are addressed.
Do you agree with Mike Monaghan? Is this an issue that needs to be addressed? or do you think enough is already being done and if it is being done how can bodyshops find out more about the processes in place? Please feel free to get in touch with ATF Professional to share your points of view.