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  Extra, Extra

ASA Focuses on State Farm Data Timeline, Seeks Benefit for Repairers

Posted 9/17/2012

Since May 2012, the Automotive Service Association (ASA) and its volunteer leaders have taken a transparent and methodical approach to State Farm’s electronic parts ordering application currently being piloted. Seeking context regarding the specifics of the pilot, ASA previously presented the industry with verified details of the State Farm pilot and the application developed by Parts­Trader at State Farm’s request.

For ASA to continue in good faith to provide accurate information to its members – and act on their behalf as advocate and industry liaison – ASA has now entered into a phase in which data delivery will be associated with a timeline. If State Farm cannot provide data showing how this application benefits collision repairers (operationally/financially) within a feasible, specified time frame, ASA will respond appropriately. ASA acknowledges the pilot is still in process and State Farm is currently reviewing data.

This follows a public request by ASA June 12 to State Farm on behalf of ASA’s collision repair members for factual evidence of how the electronic parts ordering application would benefit collision repair facilities. Within this request ASA clearly stated that if this application does not provide benefits to the collision repairer, then ASA would not support the application moving forward. On July 17, ASA made another public request to State Farm for data demonstrating that the pilot application benefits repair facilities, receipt of which was confirmed by the insurer.

George Avery, State Farm industry liaison and claims representative, said during a recent phone interview with ASA that State Farm is still sifting through the feedback received from the 158 shops using the system in four U.S. markets, and is implementing changes in the pilot that, in turn, put them in a position of needing to go back to repairers to gather further data. Avery stressed it is a fluid process. Although lacking current data to provide specific answers, he assured ASA that State Farm would respond to the association when answers were available.

Previously published, ASA’s areas of concern regarding the pilot – as expressed by collision repairers – includes efficiency issues, additional administration costs, reductions in shop profits, potential compromises to local repairer-to-supplier relationships and increasing insurer involvement in the repair process.

More than 100 formal and informal interviews have been conducted by ASA, primarily with collision repair businesses and other industry groups such as RealParts.com, PartsCheck Live, the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), Team PRP Recyclers, independent aftermarket parts distributors, wholesale original parts dealers and original equipment manufacturers. From the vast pool of conversations conducted thus far, overwhelmingly, the majority of all segments interviewed continue to express strong concern about the current State Farm pilot, particularly its electronic parts ordering component.

Collision repairers may share their comments or concerns regarding the pilot by contacting Denise Caspersen at denisec@ASAshop.org, or by phone at (800) ASA-SHOP, ext. 106, or (817) 514-2906 (direct). All ASA announcements and documents regarding the State Farm pilot are conveniently located at www.ASAshop.org. Click on “Tools & Resources” (in the blue menu bar), then “State Farm Pilot Program.”

 

 

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