AGRSS Validation Program in Full Swing; Many Find Process is Simple

March 12, 2010

Auto Glass Plus in Richmond, Va., was in the first cluster of shops, which underwent validation reviews last November.

The Auto Glass Replacement Safety Standards Council Inc.'s (AGRSS) third-party validation review program, which kicked off last fall, remains in full swing, and last month, the group embarked on its third cluster of AGRSS-registered businesses to be validated throughout the United States. Last November, several AGRSS-registered companies in the Richmond, Va., area underwent validation reviews, and, in January, several AGRSS-registered businesses in Michigan had validation reviews conducted. In February, a validator from Orion Registrar Corp., the company contracted by the AGRSS Council Inc. to administer the validations, visited several businesses in Ohio to conduct reviews.

Bruce Hardy, divisional manager for Harmon Glass of Michigan, describes the validation review process, which his company went through in January, as "pretty painless."

John Cox, director of glass operations for Belle Tire Auto Glass in Royal Oak, Mich., agrees. "Because of the preparatory work and communication [involved], I knew pretty much exactly what to expect," he says.

Charles Groves, president of Dominion Auto Glass in Richmond, Va., says as long as technicians are already well-trained and versed in the AGRSS Standard, not a lot of additional steps are needed.

"The installers just have to be educated," he says. "That pretty much all there is to it."
Still, many have taken other steps to prepare.

"[The time after our notification] allowed my staff and technicians and I to review the everyday practices of installation, as well as some of the more technical detail-oriented techniques needed for larger, more complicated jobs," says David Cooper of Auto Glass Plus in Richmond, Va.

Hardy took a similar approach. "Everyone here tries to do everything correctly all the time," he says. "We had a couple breakfast meetings to make sure everyone was up to speed."

The validations have varied in time, depending on the number of technicians a shop has, as each one must be observed during a company's validation. Both Hardy's and Groves' company reviews took the better portion of a day.

For those preparing for future validations, Cooper offered a few tips.

"I would urge all glass shop managers to compare their technicians' installation practices to the guidelines set forth in their adhesive manufacturer's training manual," he says. "If they're not one in the same, I would suggest a refresher course be given immediately. Close attention should be paid to the curing times as it applies to temperature and humidity."

The third-party validation review program was launched last fall. Clusters of shops are chosen at random throughout the United States, and, each year, a certain number of clusters will undergo validation reviews, during which a third-party representative visits the business to review its installation methods and ensure the business is installing glass in accordance with the AGRSS Standard.

CLICK HERE for more information on the program.

Be sure to look to the March/April issue of AGRR magazine for an in-depth look at the third-party validation review program.

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