Tuesday, 28 April 2015 00:00

Blue Hen Collision Express in Delaware One of 375 Shops Recognized for being in Top Five Percent in Customer Service by Mitchell

Blue Hen Collision Express in Dover, Delaware recently received Mitchell's 2014 AutocheX Premier Achiever Awards for exemplary customer service. Owned by brothers Carl and Chuck Cimino, the business was one of 375 collision repair shops across North America that was honored.

"This is an important measure for shops in helping to make sure they are delivering a good experience to their customers," Jim O'Leary, Mitchell's Vice President of Product Management, recently told Autobody News.

The company’s 13th annual Premier Achiever Awards honored repairers that consistently earned customer satisfaction scores in the top five percent of their programs measured by AutocheX.

"One really important part of Mitchell's AutocheX program is having a baseline of the same data collected so that we can compare one shop's results to another and one insurance company's results to another so they can benchmark themselves against the industry," he said.

Blue Hen Collision Express opened its doors in 1983 and the Cimino brothers have owned the shop since 1997. During that time, Carl said they have more than doubled their annual sales to the current level of $2.3M+. They have 15 employees, including 10 technicians, a shop manager, parts manager, office manager, an estimator and a receptionist.

Chuck oversees the operation on a daily basis and ensures that CSI is a continous focus. "Our team of techs and office personnel are the ones that make it happen," said Carl. "The quality of our work exceeds most other shops in the region because we are one of the few facilities that employ strictly hourly technicans. No flat rate here!"

Carl said this allows them to better manage productivity. "And when you put a first-class product out front for the customer, everything else is easy," he said.

After incorporating AutocheX in 2010, Carl said they have found it is easier to monitor CSI on a daily basis, rather than when they receive a call from a customer or an insurance company. "By using AutocheX and maintaining such a high level of customer satisfaction, our insurance partners know that if there is any issue with a customer, it is a rare expection rather than the rule," he said. "In short, by using AutocheX, we are running our business proactively rather than reactively."

Mitchell, a provider of technology, connectivity and information solutions to the Property & Casualty claims and collision repair industries, conducted the surveys by phone and on the web.

O'Leary said, "There is one question that we believe is most indicative of the consumer's experience with the repair; 'Would you refer this shop to a friend or family member on a scale of one to 10?'"

Based on the results of the surveys, Mitchell selected the award recipients, which represent 41 states and provinces across the United States and Canada. They range in size from small, family-run businesses to large consolidators.

In addition to winning the AutocheX Premier Achiever Award this year, Blue Hen also received it last year, and won a major insurance carrier's regional CSI Award based on Mitchell CSI data. "We believe the business philosophy of 'you get what you focus on,'" said Carl, who said he feels a sense of pride being recognized.

"It's ok to think that you are the best but when a respected third party recognizes you, it means more. It's proof of our daily commitment. Now we need to try and do it three years in a row!"In addition to the recognition, the recipients receive a trophy, signage for their shops and access to a website that provides promotional materials and congratulatory messages from industry leaders.

Nearly 4,000 Premier Achiever Awards have been presented since the program was launched in 2002.

O'Leary said that 7,500 shops currently participate in AutoCheX. He said that some of the main advantages of the program include improved communication and loyalty with customers as well as maximizing repeat and referral business.

"The benefit is providing them with very actionable, timely feedback that helps them to improve their operations," said O'Leary. "It's also valuable to the shops to have an objective third-party measuring their results and then use those results to make a case for receiving more business from their insurance partners."

For more information about Mitchell and the AutocheX program, visit www.mitchell.com

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