August, 2002 Archives - BodyShop Business
Big Fun: The Mini-Cooper

Is bigger always better? Not according to BMW, the maker – actually re-maker – of the classic British Mini. About 10,000 Classic Minis were sold in the United States from 1960-1967 and, after a 35-year hiatus, the MINI is back – and being dubbed the first “it” car of the 21st century. (The BMW folks spell the new MINI with all caps to distinguish it from the Mini of yesteryear.) The MINI – available in the MINI Cooper and MINI Cooper S – hit U.S. soil again this year, and dealers can’t keep ’em on the lot. It’s MINI-mania. Take it from the MINI Web site: The SUV backlash starts now.

If Customers Ain’t Happy, Ain’t Nobody Happy

While progressive collision repairers are relying more and more on computerized equipment, paperless processing and electronic transactions, old fashioned customer care – friendly, timely, convenient and cost-effective service – is still the key to repeat and referral business.

Which Is Better: Flat-Rate or Salary

David Rowe, Shop Manager Johnson Ford, Inc. Kingston, N.Y. We chose the flat-rate pay system because it has a built-in incentive program for technicians. It seems to work the best. We’ve tried a “team pay” plan. The idea was to get the cars in and out more quickly. We’d put three or four technicians on

Saving Made Simple

Not only are “Simple” IRA contributions tax deductible for employers, but they’re excluded from an employee’s income for federal income tax purposes in the year contributed.

Protecting the Consumer – and You

Whether it’s health care or the collision industry, the bills California Sen. Jackie Speier sponsors always have one thing in common: doing what’s best for the consumer. As luck would have it, what’s good for the consumer is often good for the repairer.

Tired of party guests asking you to change the subject when you start talking shop? Never fear. At this industry Web site, chatting about collision repair is the name of the game.

When the Paint Hits the Fan

What are the common paint-shop screw ups? What mistakes are consistently causing paint failures – and costing you cash? Hint: It’s not all your painter’s fault.

Cut It Out: Car Inspections Showed that He Billed for Parts He Didn’t Replace

All my Barbies were bald. I was seven, armed with scissors and not afraid to use them. What little I knew about cutting hair, I’d learned from my mother – who also completely lacked any sort of God-given haircutting skills and who’d been torturing me for years with “Mom” haircuts. (I still have a hard

Cars to Come

SUVs, sedans, coupes, minivans – sometimes all rolled into one. They look futuristic, but you could be seeing some of them on the road – and in your shop – as early as next year.

Cheap But Good: Advertising Ideas

Advertising doesn’t have to be expensive. The money you pour into costly print or broadcast ads can be better spent on other (read: cheaper) advertising endeavors.

Steering Customers to the Truth

Collision repair and auto glass specialists continue to suffer discrimination at the hands of insurance companies as well as government agencies.

DRPs: Probing the Legalities

There’s a definite conflict of interest when the payer (insurer) controls the quality of repair work. In fact, without the independence of the professional repairer, some say there’s no difference between the DRP shop and the insurer – just a different organization with the same interest, adverse to the property owner. But that doesn’t make DRPs illegal – or does it?