Created by car painters for car painters

It is easy to create an IT system. But it is difficult to create a system that matches the challenges facing a modern body repair shop perfectly. With ProcessManager, PPG has succeeded in creating a system that gives a better overview, optimises productivity and directs focus towards increasing earnings at the body shop, all at the same time. You can read more about the secret behind the system’s success here.

The actual idea for the system originated from a need for a new time clock at a body shop in Denmark. However, development was rapid and today ProcessManager covers a long list of different requirements at body shops across the whole of Scandinavia. The system provides an overview of where the cars are in the repair process, how the body shop earns money, abolishes all conventional paperwork using work slips and offers automatic stock control of goods. And these are just some of the many advantages.

User involvement is crucial

One of the central driving forces in the development of the system at PPG has been Steen Jørgensen, who is Technical & Training Manager for the Nordic countries at PPG. He emphasises that the basic idea was always to take the user’s needs as a starting point: “Right from the start we could see that if ProcessManager was to have real value as a tool for our customers, it needed to be user-friendly and flexible. The system must be able to adapt to the user’s needs – not the other way round. And we could also see that there was a great need throughout Scandinavia for a system that could help make it clear how the body shop’s key financial figures were developing, to give the best basis for increasing earnings.

And it is this adaptation to the users’ needs that has been the focus ever since. This also means that users have been actively involved in the further development of the system.  Today, further development of the system is taken care of by Farah Mourali, Business Solution Manager at PPG, who describes the process thus: “We hold quarterly meetings with selected key customers and our dealers to gather input for developing new functions and to receive feedback on the functions developed most recently. This ensures that we always have a system that is in line with the current needs in the market.” So to summarise in a few words, you could say that this is a system developed by body repair shops for body repair shops.

How it works

The repair process starts when the owner delivers their car to the authorised garage: when registering their car with the authorised dealer, a simple online login will also allow them to book an appointment for repair directly with the body repair shop, where it is also possible to enter when they want the car to be ready. Repair work is then commenced. The claims assessor’s documentation is automatically imported into the system with a link to CABAS so that the body repair shop has automatic access to all claims data and is able to see how much time has been allocated for the repair work.

When the repair work has commenced, the authorised garage is able to track online where the car is in the repair process. So if the car’s owner calls and asks when the car will be ready, the dealer always has an answer ready without having to make any phone calls first. Back at the body shop, the colours to be used are being weighed and mixed. The mix is entered automatically on the car’s dedicated electronic card. Before the car starts the next part of the repair, the body repair shop records the time spent on the process by simply tapping an iPad. This allows the body shop to track the exact cost of each claim in terms of both labour and materials.

When the car has been painted and checked, the car is ready. An SMS can then be sent to the car owner or authorised garage to notify them that the car is ready. This in turn ensures that costs for replacement cars are minimised.

We could see that there was a great need throughout Scandinavia for a system that could help make it clear how the body shop’s key financial figures were developing, to give the best basis for increasing earnings.

Full overview

Customers always have a full overview with ProcessManager. Steen Jørgensen from PPG summarises: “When employees arrive in the morning, they scan in so the ProcessManager system knows they are at work and can be allocated jobs. When a paintwork job is created – via the online booking function – by one of the body repair shop’s customers, the body shop manager can quickly and easily see who has time to do the job and thus ensure that they do not ‘double-book’ their employees.” In addition to these benefits, the system offers the retrieval of absence statistics and holiday lists, which all contribute to facilitating administration.

Another important area that may potentially save all body shops a great deal of money is the previously mentioned retrieval of a range of useful key figures. It is possible to view how many of the available hours at the body shop have been invoiced – both in total and per employee. The system also allows very exact insight into the body shop’s use of materials, as ProcessManager includes a stock management module where consumables have to be scanned out so that they are automatically reordered.