Waterloo, Ontario -- December 22, 2016 -- Economical Insurance has announced its official support for the Canadian Collision Industry Accreditation Program (CCIAP). CCIAP has already received official support from a number of Canadian repair networks including Fix Auto, CARSTAR, CSN and Assured Automotive, but Economical is the first insurer to come out in support of the program. CCIAP is administered by the Automotive Industries Association (AIA) of Canada.
“We applaud AIA Canada for taking leadership on this and are exceptionally proud to be the first Canadian insurer to endorse this new accreditation program,” said Rocco Neglia, Vice President of Claims at Economical. “We will require all of our collision repair facilities to work towards and become accredited through this independent non-profit organization.”
AIA Canada developed the program in recognition of the increasing complexity of vehicle repairs. Modern vehicles have new requirements for collision shop training, equipment and procedures. According to AIA Canada, the new accreditation program verifies shop quality which is critical for all industry stakeholders and for the public at large.
“CCIAP is a program created by, and run by, the Canadian collision repair industry,” said Jean-François Champagne, President of AIA Canada. “By making this commitment, major partners such as Economical Insurance are enhancing their focus on excellence – not only in vehicle repair but in customer service. We are extremely pleased to be meeting the needs of such an important industry stakeholder.”
CCIAP accreditation requires collision repair facilities to meet established standards in three areas: Core Business Operations, Structural Repair Capabilities and Advanced Repair Capabilities. Details of exactly what is required under each of these broad categories are available at cciap.ca/cciap-guidelines.
“We focus on our customers first,” said Joe Carvalho, Manager of National Auto Vendor Programs at Economical. “We have always maintained the highest standards of auto repairs. We believe this accreditation will help us ensure the collision repair shops in our direct repair program continue to deliver the highest level of repair standards in the industry … period.”
There is no charge for a repair facility to create an account and start tracking its progress. The facility is only charged when it is ready for the audit. AIA Canada is also working on synchronizing CCIAP with the accreditation program run by the Automotive Retailers Association of British Columbia (ARA of BC). CCIAP is administered by Andrew Shepherd of AIA Canada and I-CAR Canada.
“We’re on the verge of a memorandum of understanding on program coordination,” Shepherd said in an interview with Collision Repair magazine. “One of our goals is to make sure the programs are synchronized. Nobody wants to see shops pay twice.”
Fix Auto North Bay was the first shop to be accredited under CCIAP. The facility is owned and operated by Kelly Roberts.
“Once the program was officially announced, we were eager to begin the process,” says Roberts. “We are extremely proud of the quality of work in the shop and the team holds itself to a pretty high standard. Having an accreditation from a Canadian program for Canadian businesses just adds more value and reassures clients to the quality of the work we do here.”
Currently, well over 100 shops from across the country are engaged in the process of CCIAP accreditation. CCIAP is backed by a national field staff of auditors with a rigorous set of audit standards, and will also measure shops against participating OEM requirements. AIA Canada says the program will thus serve vehicle manufacturers who are seeking shop audits to support their certified repair network programs.