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Collision repair shop owners, managers feel less insurer influence, study shows

Monday, August 8, 2016 - 07:00
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For the second consecutive year, collision repairers say they feel less insurer influence when buying replacement automotive parts, according to the Aftermarket Business World 2016 Collision Shop Study. The study asked collision repair shop owners and managers about their parts purchasing practices, preferences and influences.

When asked, “How much influence does the insurance company have on the part service or replacement work you can perform,” a record 70 percent said “none.” That is up from 63 percent who answered that way in the 2015 study and 58 percent who answered “none” in the 2014 study. Possible replies included “none, some, moderate, major” and “complete control.”

Collision repairers answering “none” or “some,” the two least intrusive answers, increased from 79 percent in the 2015 study to 85 percent in the 2016 study.

Answers at the other end of the spectrum also showed an improvement in the sometimes contentious relationship between collision repairers and insurers.

Those answering “complete control” decreased from 4 percent in both the 2014 and 2015 studies to 2 percent this year. In addition, those answering “major” control decreased from 9 percent in 2015 to 4 percent in 2016. Those reporting that they feel “moderate” pressure stayed steady at 9 percent.

When asked who they tend to purchase parts from, collision repairers in this year’s study said auto parts retailers, jobbers, dealership and warehouse distributors. When asked who their preferred supplier is, responses included auto parts retailers (41 percent), jobber (19 percent), dealerships (18 percent) and warehouse distributors (14 percent).

When asked the primary reason that they prefer one supplier over another, collision repairers said it was due to good relationships (34 percent), parts availability (24 percent), fast delivery (16 percent) and carries specific product brands (11 percent). Click here to see the study.

Methodology: The Aftermarket Business World Collision Shop Study was fielded via email to readers of ABRN, a sister publication of Aftermarket Business World. The findings are intended to show general trends, not statistical certainties.

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