Three months after launching a new Web site where collision repairers could submit inquiries on the databases for various estimating products, the Database Enhancement Gateway (www.degweb.org) is going strong with more than 250 inquiries and more than 7,500 unique visitors.
“The DEG was developed with the hope of, ‘If we build it, they will come,’” said DEG Administrator Aaron Shulenberg. “And fortunately, collision repairers have.”
The DEG came about as the result of a collaborative effort by the Society of Collision Repair Specialists, the Automotive Service Association and the Alliance of Automotive Service Providers. It was developed to improve the quality and accuracy of collision repair estimates through proactive feedback from the collision repair industry and other “end users” of the information that providers supply the databases for the various estimating products.
All users of collision estimating software are encouraged to review the Web site and use it in conjunction with the tools already available from the various software providers.
It features clear navigation through the Database Inquiry process and a cleaner user interface for enhanced functionality. It allows the average estimate preparer to offer input to information providers in an easy, consistent and streamlined manner. To keep the industry abreast of all positive advancements toward more accurate collision estimating data, the Web site employs a live database of focused content to track all ongoing and resolved inquiries.
“I’ve been submitting inquiries to the DEG Web site since January, and it’s awesome,” says Kyle Cantrell, an estimator for Honda Carland. “Some of the inquiries have either been resolved or have been reviewed, and the conclusion has been no change. Even in the cases with no change, it’s explained in detail why there will be no change, which educates everyone and makes it just as important as an inquiry with a change.”
The DEG also publishes a monthly e-newsletter that will provide the industry with a regular update of the DEG and Web site activity.