3M has released RepairStack Performance Solutions, a connected platform to help shop owners and collision repair managers with critical information relating to shop performance, invoicing, and materials usage.
The platform, combining hardware and software, was launched at the 2022 SEMA Show following an initial beta testing period. It is currently available in the United States with Canada to follow next year, and the company aiming for a rollout globally after that.
3M said collision repair shops face challenges that include a reduction in gross profits due to labour shortages, increased complexity of repairs, decreasing parts discounts, and increased replacement work. Additionally, new repair processes are disrupting established routines and testing body shop capabilities. As a result, shop owners must grapple with a lack of visibility and clear understanding of their shop performance, while experiencing increasingly tight margins in a complex repair environment.
These new challenges demand greater agility, strategic planning, and collaboration. With 3M RepairStack Performance Solutions, the company says it is pioneering the era of connected body shops to help businesses unlock opportunities for profit, efficiency, and growth.
“Operational efficiency inside a shop is critical for long-term business and customer success,” said Dave Gunderson, President of 3M Automotive Aftermarket Division. “That operational efficiency is what we’re striving to simplify with 3M RepairStack Performance Solutions. In an increasingly digital landscape, this customised, connected solution provides the fast clarity and transparency needed to drive optimal value from materials and labour.”
RepairStack features hardware that houses all 3M allied materials. As an integrated and automated platform, the company says body shops are offered three key benefits: an inventory management system ensuring materials needed for safe and reliable repairs are always available, a streamlined blueprinting and billing process, and real-time insights into business performance.
With RepairStack Inventory Management Software, body shops can manage materials and maintain consistent inventory. The software tracks material usage by technician, shop, RO, and more, while enabling automated reordering of products based on inventory stock levels and direct connection to preferred distributors. This tracking and auto-replenishment improves a shop’s inventory turns while reducing waste and emergency orders. 3M says better-managed inventories empower technician training and increased technician performance and satisfaction, allowing hands-on work to remain with the vehicles.
RepairStack Billables Invoicing Software automates scanning and invoicing to ensure project procedures and materials are accounted for and billed. The software comes with a simple scan and assign process to add materials to press orders. 3M and non-3M materials can be added to repair orders, so payments are made for materials used. Body shop owners can choose invoicing options that best fit their needs, whether that’s CRiMP, RepairStack CRiMP 1.0, or RepairStack Integrated Invoicing.
The RepairStack Performance Analytics Tool tracks shop performance, overall sales mix and materials, costs, and profits all in one place. The tool tracks labour, materials, costs, sales per technician, and invoices. Robust data and reporting capabilities provide real-time snapshots of shop performance, and shop owners are given insights into opportunities for improvement. 3M says this allows shop owners to better understand gaps in throughput, identify areas for additional training support, and leverage real-time data to optimise their business.
“One of the biggest reasons I would recommend 3M RepairStack Performance Solutions would be for shops to get paid for materials and labour they are providing,” said Brian Martin, Director Of Auto Collision, Craig Zinn Automotive Group, Lexus of Pembroke Pines and North Miami.
Mike Anderson, President and owner of Collision Advice Group, said: “We have seen shops that use 3M RepairStack go from losing money on materials to becoming a profit centre, allowing them the opportunity to reinvest in their business.”