“The NBRA is encouraged to see that repairer feedback was fairly positive in our first Insurer Attitude Survey, which aims to look at the relationship between repairers and insurers”, said Chris Weeks, Director of The National Body Repair Association (NBRA).
The survey was one of the main focuses for the association last year, and was designed to find a position for how the body repair industry perceives its relationship with the various insurers on a range of different business areas. The feedback will provide the sector with a better platform for constructive insurer discussions that will help encourage improved working relationships and terms.
When asked about the overall satisfaction when looking to retain the insurer contract, results showed that there was still room for improvement with no insurer scoring above 8 points in this question.
Ageas (Tesco) was the highest valued insurer with a rating of 7.58 points
Saga was the least valued insurer with a rating of 2.44 points
When asked how well Insurers compensate repairers for providing their fault customers with mobility, this question scored the lowest overall satisfaction amongst repairers with an average of 3.20 points. It was clear to see that repairers want to see an end to what is often described as a ‘free’ service, but in reality holds a significant financial burden for them.
Zurich was the highest valued insurer with a rating of 6.83 points
Saga was the least valued insurer with a rating of 1.07 points
Mobility for a fault accident is marketed by most insurers as a benefit to consumers, albeit it is often described as ‘free’. NBRA would like to see this as the first area for the Insurer Advisory Board to collaborate on and find a way to collectively agree how fault mobility will be fulfilled and funded in the future
Insurer profitably was a key area of concern in the survey with an average score of 4.50 points. Over the last decade, the overall RPI UK rate of inflation has been 31.8% and there is an argument to say that due to a shortage of skilled labour, bodyshops have seen even greater cost inflation. Over the same period labour costs on repairs has increased by just 17.3% and this is before any overall invoice discount has been applied.
Profitability was the 3rd lowest scored question in terms of relative satisfaction
Zurich was the highest valued insurer with a rating of 7.13 points
Again, Saga was the least valued insurer with a rating of 1.53 points
Chris Weeks continued, “It is clear from our findings that repairers recognise most insurers value their customers highly and consumer safety is a top priority for them. However, the financial pressure that a lot of repairers are under, means that investment in equipment and training is a challenge. A reduction of that pressure would make future safety issues less likely.
“There is still scope with certain insurers to develop their relationships with their repair networks as some still fall well below average in many areas of the survey.
“We will now work closely with insurers and repairers and hope to see our comments and recommendations taken on board, and significant improvements across key questions in our next survey”.
About the RMI
The Retail Motor Industry represents the interests of operators in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man providing sales and services to motorists and businesses. The RMI has a formal association with the independent Scottish Motor Trade Association which represents the retail motor industry in Scotland.