By Jeff Sanford
San Diego, California — June 24, 2015 — Major software provider Mitchell has just announced it is releasing its popular RepairCenter application in French for the Quebec market. Native French Canadian speakers can now easily manage workflows through RepairCenter. According to the Mitchell press release no longer will work orders “get lost in translation.”
“RepairCenter was created to streamline the often complex collision repairs process, providing a single platform from which to manage workflows,” says Jim O’Leary, Vice President of Product Management. “While the English version of RepairCenter has been available in Canada for some time, we are thrilled to now offer the Workspace and comprehensive suite of management tools to native French speakers in their preferred language.”
In an interview with Collision Repair magazine O’Leary explained how the French version came to be.
“We have been working on this for three years. It’s a long-term effort to make RepairCenter work for the French market. We’ve been excited about the opportunity in Quebec in the collision space. We felt it was an underserved market,” says O’Leary.
The Quebec collision repair market has always been unique, existing a little apart from the business English North America.
“Quebec is a part of Canada, but it is also a little bit separate. Taking a one-size approach hasn’t been successful. But it’s been great for us. We’ve seen momentum on both the shop side and the insurance side to these shops. We are optimistic that this will pay off in new business,” says O’Leary.
So far Mitchell has about 25 shops using RepairCenter French. Some shops around Montreal still use RepairCenter English. “But we’ll be converting them in the coming months,” says O’Leary. “There was a lot of work of translation. But that’s not all it was. The biggest area separate from the translation work was getting the tax system right. It took our Quebec team some nuance to get that nailed down.”
Mitchell has been investing expanding its operations in Europe, initially in Spain, but eventually to France, the UK and Germany. Could the investment in a French offering end up helping to position Mitchell in the global market? “That might be,” says O’Leary.
That said, the North American speakers of French appreciate the effort. “I like the way Mitchell developed this software to make our daily work much easier. As a customer, I feel important,” says Gaetan Gadbois, owner of Pro Expert Centre de Collision in Brossard, Quebec. RepairCenter “gives us necessary information related to different makes of cars, in a constantly evolving industry.”