“The car is a computer on wheels, and you need to be educated on its software and technology,” was the ominous warning issued by the closing speaker as the Auto Glass Week education program concluded in Orlando.
Frank Terlep is the CEO of Auto Techcelerators LLC and has been at the forefront of auto and collision technologies since the mid-1980s. He provided a very thorough and detailed road map for future success to attendees during his “Industry Disruptions: What They Are and How They Will Change the Industry” session at the annual industry conclave.
Terlep discussed six trends and technologies that are disrupting the auto glass industry:
1. New vehicle technology
4. Insurance technology
5. Connected car/big data
6. Artificial intelligence
He provided plenty of facts to show how fast these trends are moving. Terlep said 97% of new cars will have some ADAS in the future. He said, for example, that Nissan Trucks have 17 ADAS systems; there are 18 different operating systems in cars today; and, in five years there will be 130 million ADAS-equipped vehicles on the road.
Terlep asked the audience how many hope to be in business in five years and when almost all raised their hands, he provided his road map to “survive and thrive” in the new era:
1. ADAS: Become an expert;
2. Calibrations – not just glass calibrations, but ADAS calibrations;
3. Become the best in your market;
4. Become an ADAS documentation expert;
5. Make it easy to do business with you.
With that, Terlep answered some questions and the education component of Auto Glass Week concluded with undoubtedly many in company home offices receiving text messages from the colleagues attending Terlep’s seminar saying, “we need to talk.”
The penultimate seminar earlier Wednesday morning was an expert panel addressing “How to Ensure Correct Glass Parts” that included Jennifer Curbow, customer service specialist for NOVUS Glass; George Weller, president of Zenith Auto Glass; and, Josh Schwermer, chief technology officer at Glass Mechanix. There was much discussion about educating consumers and CSRs, along with a look at a number of different types of tools to help identify the right part the first time.