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ACIS and Grove help Fix Auto UK on the ‘Process to Profit’ journey

Posted by Ian Gallagher on 27th April 2019

A focus on the ‘F’ word may seem like an unconventional approach to tackling challenges in the car refinish and commercial vehicle accident repair sector. But ‘flag it’, ‘find it’ and ‘fix it’ is the time-honoured mantra helping Fix Auto UK bodyshops prime and polish their profitability.

The ‘Process to Profit’ philosophy was developed by ACIS member The Grove Group, which has been working with Fix Auto UK since the model was introduced in the UK in 2010.

“We became involved with Fix Auto UK right from the beginning,” said Graham Sutcliffe, managing director of the 102-year-old national distributor, which now employs more than 100 people.

“We have been a massive advocate of their business model and all the benefits they can offer their network of repairers.

“Today’s market is not just about agreeing discounts and supplying product, it’s so much more than that. Both Grove Group and ACIS share the approach that we must differentiate ourselves from our competitors and offer our customers something that brings genuine value to their business.

“At Grove Group, we have been selectively running our ‘Process to Profit’ programme for the last seven years. The programme has evolved and changed its face over the years, but the main objective remains the same – to support our customers optimising quality,  profitability and efficiency – not just in paint and materials, but the business in its entirety.”

Bodyshop health checks

“It’s not a set term programme or a quick fix solution. The process follows a set programme after a bodyshop health check and highlights areas that require attention and improvement through the 3 F’s approach – Flag it, Find it and Fix It,” added Graham.

“Fix Auto UK creates a national group that shares best practice, uniforms procedures and offers consistent and excellent levels of service across the UK. All this while empowering a forward-thinking approach so that businesses are not only prepared for market change, they embrace it.

“Equally, through our partnership with ACIS we are able to provide 100 per cent UK and Northern Ireland supply coverage, share best practice, market information and synergies in terms of strategic approach.

“This could be obtaining various market approvals with motor manufacturers, insurance companies, accident management businesses or fleet and rental companies. At ACIS we have specialised teams working to obtain national agreements and winning national group business on our behalf.

“In addition, the Grove Group benefits from ACIS’s business and IT support solutions – ASCRIBE and ACIS Tracker, for example. We really understand what ACIS needs from its distribution partners to support the programmes and approvals that it puts in place.

“On many occasions we have used ACIS IT solutions and packages to enhance our programme. Although there isn’t one solution that fits all, we understand the needs and changes of all repairers differ.

“Our relationship and offering has so many synergies with that of Fix Auto, you could argue we are very similar businesses which are simply working in different sections of the supply chain. We share many of the same visions and practices which makes it very easy to provide a seamless route to success.”

Fix Auto Hoddesdon

This synchronicity is demonstrated at Fix Auto Hoddesdon, where director Grant Ealey said: “As I’ve worked with Grove for three decades, it made complete sense to involve the company when we launched Fix Auto Hoddesdon. Grove’s ‘Process to Profit’ programme has been extremely beneficial in helping us to enhance efficiency and profitability. Grove continually strives to add improved repair processes, innovative products and equipment. In addition,  the team supports our business with structured training for our operatives.”

Tony Thorpe, business development director for the Grove Group supporting Fix Auto Hoddeson, said: “It’s great to work with Grant and his team as their business is a great example of what can be achieved when you work together and share the same goals and objectives. Fix Auto Hoddesdon is already a fantastically run business, but Grant and his team are always looking to improve and they have a willingness to embrace new ideas.”