I-CAR, the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair, is excited to announce enhancements to the I-CAR Platinum Individual and I-CAR Gold Class Professionals Collision Repair recognition programs. Collectively, these programs are the collision repair industry’s highest recognition for technical training, which contributes to complete and safe repairs. 2013 enhancements are in direct response to inter-industry feedback and the evolving needs of today’s collision industry businesses.
During the Collision Industry Conference (CIC) event in Palm Springs earlier this month, I-CAR CEO & President John Van Alstyne described the key enhancements to the Platinum and Gold Class programs, which are effective immediately. “I-CAR’s core role-based curriculum, the I-CAR Professional Development Program (PDP), remains unchanged; however, several program requirements for Platinum and Gold Class recognition for collision repairers have been modified to better accommodate the industry.”
Platinum program enhancements announced today include an ongoing on-ramp to Platinum, which is termed the “Road to Platinum.” Individuals on the Road to Platinum receive tailored I-CARE customer support; Platinum recognition begins with I-CAR ProLevel® 1 achievement; and Platinum recognition is maintained by annual progression from ProLevel 1, to ProLevel 2, to ProLevel 3, then through completion of six credit hours of ongoing role-relevant training thereafter. These changes are very consistent with the original program intent and provide the aspiring Platinum Individual the opportunity to start the Platinum knowledge journey at any point in time, with a logical timeframe to achieve ProLevel 3.
VanAlstyne commented, “The key principle to remember is that Gold Class is all about Platinum achievement; Platinum is the foundation, and this has not changed.”
Gold Class program enhancements include a similar ongoing on-ramp to Gold Class, which is termed the “Road to Gold.” Gold Class recognition going forward will begin with Platinum ProLevel 1 achievement, just as it did in 2012; Gold Class recognition is maintained with ongoing Platinum achievement; and the program rules have been modified to better accommodate employee turnover realities. “I-CAR and industry segment advisors identified a strong need to enhance the program by addressing technician turnover with policies that are realistic and flexible, thus ensuring that facilities remain committed to achieving a highlevel of technical competence and that technicians that are trained to perform complete and safe repairs,” said Van Alstyne.
I-CAR is dedicated to supporting all the businesses that achieved ProLevel 1 Gold Class recognition in 2012 and will continue to provide ongoing support through its I-CARE program. I-CARE is the organization’s improved customer support process that includes services such as custom reports to monitor training progress, targeted emails about upcoming classes needed to maintain Gold Class, and proactive customer outreach by I-CAR Customer Care.
For businesses that did not achieve ProLevel 1 Gold Class recognition in 2012, the new Road to Gold program will allow these businesses to get back on track and achieve Gold Class recognition as soon as they achieve ProLevel 1 status. Businesses that wish to get on the Road to Gold should contact Customer Care to learn more about the new requirements. Even businesses new to training with I-CAR will benefit from these changes; it’s easier than ever to get on the Road to Gold, and I-CAR now has the support systems to help.
Alstyne stated, “I-CAR believes that through these improvements to the Gold Class recognition program, businesses will be able to make the commitment to training that will allow them to have the knowledge required to perform complete and safe repairs. Additionally, they will enjoy related potential benefits such as improved business performance, access to revenue-enhancing repair network programs, risk reduction, and increased professionalism,” he continued. “As these benefits become more visible within the industry, we anticipate welcoming back shops that want to regain Gold Class status, as well as introduce training to many more for the first time in 2013.”
Also announced were updates to Gold Class branding and related Gold Class fee eliminations. The new, contemporary Gold Class logo and updated Gold Class Kit materials are intended to help promote the value of training and increase consumer awareness. Van Alstyne also announced that the updated promotional Gold Class Kit will automatically be provided free of charge in 2013 and the application processing fee associated with the Gold Class application has been eliminated effective immediately.
More information on 2013 Collision Repair Gold Class enhancements can be found at www.i-car.com.