Welcome back to our two platinum sponsors Compass Claims and Axalta Coating Systems who enthusiastically support recognising the best businesses and individuals in the industry. It's these two companies, and our Gold and Silver sponsors, that make these awards possible.
Awards categories As well as the traditional awards for best boutique, medium, large and new shop in each state (except for SA and WA where there is no medium category), we also invite nominations for an industry Rising Star and a Community hero. The full list of awards that you can nominate a shop for or enter your own shop are: • Best boutique shop • Best medium shop (QLD, NSW, VIC) • Best large shop • Best new shop • Dealer and manufacturer owned, large groups • Axalta sustainability award • Best customer experience • Best country repair shop • Community Hero • Rising Star • Most innovative bodyshop • Operational excellence
Best boutique, medium, large shop categories are divided by turnover. Boutique: Up to $3.5m Medium (QLD, VIC, NSW): Between $3.5m - $5.5m Large: $5.5m+
How the nomination process works Anyone from the repair industry can nominate a shop for any of our categories or you can self-nominate. Each nomination is considered on its own merits – it doesn't matter whether it has been nominated multiple times or just once. Shops without websites will not be considered for judging.
Previous winner? If your shop has won in any category previously you will not be considered for a minimum of two years for an award in the same category. You can, however, enter a different category. For instance if you won a new shop award last year, this year your shop could be nominated for a size-category. Or you won best medium shop in your state last year you could still nominate or be nominated for best customer experience or for the Axalta Sustainability Award or Community Hero.
Here are the basics that a shop must comply with in order to be considered. • Comfortable customer facilities • A clean, tidy reception • Good signage • Dedicated estimating space • Clean toilets • Equipment • Investment in the latest repair technology • Organised equipment storage • Organised parts area • Robust training schedule for correct use of equipment to achieve repairs to manufacturers’ specifications • Staff welfare • A clean, healthy work environment • Good OH&S procedure • Staff training • Acceptable staff facilities • Green initiatives • Solid recycling program including thinners • Extra credit for water recycling, energy efficient equipment and other green initiatives • A website
What scores extra points? • Having a coherent vision for the future of your businesses • Demonstrating how you have adapted your business to meet current challenges • Innovation in business practice • Involvement in the industry - trade associations or industry business groups • Positive attitude towards the industry • Marketing program which connects with customers and work providers, social media involvement
What do I have to do to be considered? When you have nominated yourself or have been nominated for any of the awards you will be asked to complete a questionnaire on Survey Monkey. This helps the judges, Sam Street, editor at Paint & Panel, and Neil Powell to select which shops will be judged. The information you provide is completely confidential and will not be shared with anyone outside of the judges. If you win a regional award which entails an article in the magazine, you will have the opportunity to see what is written prior to print. The spirit of these awards, for the industry by the industry, is to celebrate the best bodyshops and personnel, not to give away any trade secrets. You will be notified if your shop is selected for judging and a time arranged for this. The judges visit your shop, the owner or manager shows the judges around, the judges take photographs and video and the process should take no longer than 40minutes. The judges only have two days in each state and try to see as many shops as possible and as such are inflexible on dates and times. We will publish the exact dates for each state shortly, these will range from the end of June to the end of July. Each shop that is judged will be asked to fill out a form telling us about your suppliers. The reason for this is that many suppliers such as paint companies and parts suppliers like to take out congratulations adverts in the magazine to support their customers. This information is used for this purpose only.
Here's some information about some of our best practice awards
Axalta sustainability award Sustainability is about so much more than just being 'green'. It is also about building a better future for your business and creating a better environment for your staff to ensure that your business stands the test of time. You don't need to tick every box but here are some of the criteria the judges will be looking for:
• Strong vision for business and plan for future • Staff training, especially encouraging the next generation, e.g. apprentices • Marketing program • Efficient operating procedures • Environmentally responsible • Community involvement • Specialisation or diversification strategies
Operational excellence One of the signs of a well run shop is that no one looks stressed or hurried. How is this magic created – by operational excellence. Is your shop or a customer's shop a great example of operational excellence with efficient procedures, great staff communication and with a system and culture everyone buys into? Then nominate now.
Best customer experience What is the award for? Consistently exceptional customer service. Think carefully before nominating. Does this business really go the extra mile? Do they measure customer satisfaction? What sets them apart from a run-of-the-mill repairer? In order to be considered you will have to fill out a Survey Monkey form detailing your customer procedures and what you do that makes you stand out from the crowd.
Best country repair shop VIDEO ENTRY It's impossible for the judges to visit all the entrants given the vast distances involved so we will be judging video entries. Please check out the last year’s winning entry which you can find here.
What do I have to do to be considered? Enter or be nominated online. Make a movie of up to 10 minutes long which showcases your shop and key staff members. 2014's winner, Craig Carey, made the smart move of getting one of the youngsters in the shop to make the video and edit it. If you haven’t got a clue where to start and there’s someone under 25 working in your shop you can almost guarantee that they will have the necessary skills to shoot a movie entry for you. If you can’t supply a movie on a memory stick, cd rom or via websites such as Hightail or Dropbox, then a well presented powerpoint will be considered with plenty of reasonable quality photographs. The video should show your shop inside and out including customer reception area, offices, estimating area, parts storage and workshop - demonstrating workflow if possible. Please look at the judging criteria above and consider how you can cover these in your video. You can make this film with a smartphone, iPad or camcorder, or you could take the opportunity to go a bit more upmarket and end up with promo video which you can put on your website. You are a regional repairer if your shop is not located within 80km of: • Sydney • Melbourne • Brisbane • Perth • Adelaide • Gold Coast-Tweed • Newcastle-Maitland • Canberra-Queanbeyan • Wollongong • Hobart • Geelong • Townsville-Thuringowa • Cairns • Darwin • Toowoomba
Rising star VIDEO ENTRY This award is to recognise younger people in the industry, under the age of 35, that are on the path to becoming leaders or innovators. We're looking for positive, energetic people who have contributed to the success of a smash repair shop or chain of shops.
What do I have to do to be considered? Be nominated or nominate yourself. We are hoping that suppliers who have been impressed with their dealings with an under 35-year-old in a smash repair shop will also nominate. We will ask the person who nominates this individual to fill out a form detailing why they believe the nominee is worthy of the title Rising Star. We will then ask the nominees to make a video of less than 10 minutes talking about themselves and the industry.
Most innovative bodyshop We're looking for someone who really thinks out of the box. It might be the way that staff are incentivised, processes used, marketing programmes to name a couple of example – the judges are ready to be dazzled. What do I have to do to be considered? Nominees will outline in a Survey Monkey form what they believe makes their shop an innovation leader.
Community Hero We want to recognise shops that are involved with their community, which is another indicator of good business practice.
What do I have to do to be considered? This business will be involved in community initiatives such as supporting local sports teams, seniors clubs, raising money for charity, making a contribution to local business community initiatives or being involved with schools and colleges. The nominated business will need to fill out a form detailing their community involvement.
What happens if I win? You will be flown to the Paint & Panel Bodyshop Awards dinner to receive your award. Each winner will have a profile of their business in the September edition of the magazine, with the national winners profiled in the November issue. As well as the physical award to display in your reception area, you will receive a winner's logo to display on your website and in your marketing material. Any financial data (eg turnover etc) will be kept confidential and only viewed by the judges Sam Street and Neil Powell. You will see the article before it goes to print.