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Making Efficiency Easier: OEConnection’s Nicky Woerner talks shop processes, top-down and bottom-up

Quebec City, Quebec — Running an auto body repair centre is busy work and every manager wants things to run smoother, but who has the time to make plans? Luckily, Nicky Woerner, director of the Richfield, Ohio-based OEConnection, has the skills and the experience to get your business running like clockwork.

A 27 year auto industry veteran and widely regarded as an operational efficiency expert, Woerner works directly with body shops on a daily basis to develop solutions to the many hiccups that can prevent a collision centre from performing its best.

Collision Repair caught up with Woerner following her presentation last Friday at the Fix Network National Conference in Quebec City.

She spoke to how supply chain disruptions are still  a reality for many shop owners  and how OEConnection can formulate streamlined solutions that keep the parts ordering process in motion.

“At this particular time, with all of the new technologies that are coming in, from changing vehicles, certification, tooling and equipment, to how you order parts—we think it is really important to try and solve those inefficiencies and confusion that stakeholders within the collision market are dealing with today,” said Woerner.

She says that her company is currently planning a decade in advance to provide clients with the most proactive solutions possible to today’s issues affecting them.

“We [at OEConnection] said, ‘we need to plan for the next ten years,’ and so that strategic plan really honed in on some of the noise and the inefficiencies as it relates to parts ordering and distribution, as well as the ability to access the right information at the right time.”

“Ideally, the goal is to reduce the complexity and have the ability to restore that vehicle to pre-accident condition,” said Woerner.

To that end, OEConnection offers businesses solutions that start from the top-level, engaging a shop network’s processes overall to determine how best to consolidate and streamline business segments in order to open up new efficiencies.

“Our products are very unique and some of them apply to the enterprise or corporate level in what we would call a top-down approach. With that approach, we are helping the organization streamline their processes and solve for gaps in those processes to connect everything, because we believe that when everything is connected, everything is more efficient,” said Woerner.

The company also approaches efficiency from the bottom up, addressing technicians skill sets  individually, and putting them on track for success in a way that minimizes the burden on managers, says Woerner.

“These franchisees and collision shops are in need of something that is easy to implement because they are tasked with talent issues.

“What we hope to strive for, is to solve for some of that, or contribute to some of the solution by changing the skill sets of the individuals who pull repair procedures today, to reduce all the demands that are expected of technicians,” she said.

Those interested in OEConnection’s services can visit the website at https://oeconnection.com/.

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