It’s been just over a year since Holden launched its Accident Care program and its Collision network. Sam Street talked to some of the certified shops to see how they are faring.

It’s early days for the network as there is always a chicken and egg element to a repair network. You have to get enough shops on board in order to promote it to the retail customers and dealership network. There are now 27 shops that have achieved certification. Holden has been very strict in its standards.
Repairer must be committed to the Holden ‘Safe, Proper Repair’ methodology of all Holden vehicles, which includes:

  • Qualified repairers and a culture of continuous training
  • Using new Genuine Holden Parts
  • Using GM Holden Repair Procedures
  • Adhering to GM Holden Position Statements
  • Using the correct repair equipment

Now that the network is maturing, Holden collision business manager Damian Cahill has commenced the customer education side of the program. “We wrote an editorial for Holden customers via our Holden Lion e-newsletter. Another editorial will be released shortly from Holden Financial Services explaining the importance of only using genuine parts,” he said. “This will be part of a series promoting the benefits of Holden premier motor insurance. Project Monaro is showcasing the high standard of work that our network is capable of. And lastly, we’ve finalised the scripts for our education videos on the importance of having your vehicle repaired in our Network that will be released to during 2020.”
Peter Kittle Motor Company boasts a Toyota & Holden dealership in Adelaide as well as its Collision Repair Centre. Chad Buckley, manager collision repairs said: “Becoming part of the Holden Collision Repair Network has been a fantastic achievement for us. Being the only certified shop in South Australia has been great for business and our Holden customers.
“Damian Cahill and Holden were really forward-thinking with their approach to the program and the development of Holden Accident Care. Holden offers repairers a great range marketing materials, but also promotes us through Accident Care and other initiatives like ‘Project Monaro’. From this, we have seen customers and insurers come to us from all over SA, trusting our commitment to Safe, Proper Repair. Our access to Holden Repair Data has been invaluable. Peter Kittle Collision has also witnessed some huge benefits internally. When employing highly motivated and talented staff, it can sometimes be challenging to keep them fulfilled and hungry for more. But, being part of the Holden Network has us living in a culture of continuous training.”
Nikki Slattery who runs Cranbourne Body Works in Victoria with her husband Kevin was one of the first certified repairers in the network and the business has just been awarded I-CAR Gold Class - a program requirement. “Having to commit to I-CAR Gold has been a huge plus for our team. It has brought us together and now everyone is really keen to keep learning and improving their skills.
“The marketing materials are great and the certification inspires customer confidence. We find the customer is more at ease and we are able to say that the car has been repaired with all genuine Holden parts by a technician trained in the latest repair methods. The Holden team continues to develop and add to the program regularly.”
Scott Stahlhut from Eagle Smash Repairs in Brisbane joined the network in August and agrees that the I-Car training requirement has been a plus. “It’s pushed us harder to train and really helped the guys. Now insurers and fleet companies know we are Holden Certified they are directing cars to us for repair. Customers see the signage and it inspires confidence and gives more of a dealership feel.
“It’s early days and as time goes on and the network is promoted it will become more and more valuable. It’s great to get in at ground level.”
To apply to be part of the Holden Certified Repair Network log in to Holden Trade Club and fill out the application.

This article was first published in Paint & Panel magazine November 2019.

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