NWRA Fall Conference Held in Las Vegas
The National Windshield Repair Association (NWRA) held its Fall Conference last week at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. The event was in conjunction with NACE show and other Auto Glass Week events.
The two-day event opened with a welcome by NWRA president Paul Syfko of Glass Medic America.
Rob Rust, Quest Software, opened the program with a presentation on how electronic technology can empower a business. He discussed the nuts and bolts of EDI. "The most important point I can make is that if you're not using electronic technology, you're throwing away money because of what you save in efficiency and costs," he told attendees.
Matt Larson, Delta Kits, said that his presentation would follow up on Rust's point about looking professional. "Professionalism concerns how you look and how you present yourself to others," he explained. He agreed that electronic technology gives a business professionalism.
"The first impression you make on the consumer is important," Lawson said. He introduced Jeff Olive, Glasspro, as an example of how to dress to make a good first impression. Olive said that he thinks about the first impression because he knows that the consumer is going to judge him and his ability to do a good job by that first look.
"You have to set the customer's expectations," Larson said. "Let them know what they can expect from the repair." He also advised doing a walk around with the consumer to point out any damage, which is already present. "It all lends to the experience," he concluded.
Fahmy Mechael discussed how to work with LYNX Services. He discussed the range of insurance programs that LYNX handles and the similarities and differences between them. It manages three programs: For State Farm, for Allstate and for LYNX Insurance Clients for all the other insurance companies.
There are differences in deductible waiving, damage qualification and payment amounts. In terms of the damage qualification, some clients feel more strongly about what is repairable, he explained.
In terms of similarities, he pointed out that there is enrollment in the METRYX registry, the company's service profile and invoice and payment methods. "METRYX gives a repair company the opportunity to register for the 40 insurance clients that LYNX manages with only one registration," he explained. "The efficiency is that you register once for all the programs that LYNX manages. This streamlines your business practices." One point he made to the group is that in the last year LYNX has developed a system in which it monitors the amount of conversions from repair to replacement by a shop. If this seems out of line, the system picks up on that. "Also, for repair we try to favor repair-only companies for this work," he stated. He also said that the company is working on setting up a program for on-line invoicing for repair-only. It expects to have it active by the middle of next year.
The final presentation of the day was by Rory Most of Glass Technology and Chris Boyle of Glassweld Systems on innovations in windshield repair. Most discussed the evolution of repair from the traditional method to the dry vacuum method. Boyle talked about the work his company is doing on developing a method to keep the windshield at the optimum temperature for repair by either cooling it or maintaining a high temperature to avoid causing stress. The company expects it to be available within six months. "It will allow you to make repairs at cold temperatures that you were not able to before," he stated.
The education program on the final day of the NWRA Fall Conference included a discussion of the technical aspects of a repair, an update on the Repair of Laminated Auto Glass (ROLAGS) and Auto Glass Replacement Safety (AGRSS) Standards work, customer service and round table discussions in which attendees could discuss topics of concern.
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