I-CAR has introduced a variety of groundbreaking enhancements designed to better serve the rapidly evolving needs of the collision repair inter-industry.
The announcement—made at NACE Automechanika Atlanta—follows a nearly five-year comprehensive process of gathering and applying industry insights and feedback about its education and recognition programs.
Together, these enhancements are designed to elevate industry training standards and provide a more comprehensive, relevant and affordable solution to collision repair training programs while making it easier for customers to interact with I-CAR.
These new enhancements are also take aim at the future of the collision repair industry and advance I-CAR’s vision that every person within the industry has the information, knowledge and skills required to perform complete, safe and quality repairs for the ultimate benefit of the consumer. A first quarter 2019 launch is targeted.
As a result of extensive input from industry organizations, committees, advisory councils, benchmarking, and DACUM (Designing A Curriculum) workshops, I-CAR has significantly enhanced its industry training standard, which since 2010 has been focused principally on knowledge requirements.
I-CAR’s updated Automotive Collision Repair Industry Knowledge and Skills Protocol, revealed for 2019 implementation, is a “complete refresh,” reflecting the knowledge required to repair cars of today and tomorrow, plus it puts an expanded emphasis on requisite skills. This same protocol provided the inputs required for a complete update to I-CAR’s core supporting curriculum. I-CAR’s future courses will be more hands-on, generally shorter, more interactive, with far less course-to-course redundancy. All of this has been coordinated, reviewed and embraced by industry subject matter experts, including Repairers, OEMs and Insurers.
I-CAR says it will also play a more integral role in repair shops, visiting annually to conduct ongoing assessments and advise on knowledge and skills gaps that exist within the shop, thereby supporting achievement and ongoing renewal of its expanding Gold Class population, currently exceeding 5,800.
The 2019 enhancements leverage the work I-CAR has done over the past several years to build more relevant offerings geared to current and future industry needs. These enhancements have been optimized and integrated with new products and programming to offer shops a richer educational program that better aligns with collision repair technical realities, or the Technical Tsunami, as I-CAR refers to it.
I-CAR CEO & President John Van Alstyne announced these enhancements and others at NACE Automechanika in Atlanta. A summary of the key planned enhancements includes:
- I-CAR Automotive Collision Repair Industry Knowledge and Skills Protocol
- Updated and industry-backed knowledge and skills protocol that focuses more extensively on specific skills and role performance requirements
- Enhancements to I-CAR’s recognition programs (Platinum and Gold Class)
- Heightened Platinum and Gold Class requirements aligned with industry benchmarks and repair requirements
- Optional Aluminum Structural Gold Class recognition for shops that complete I-CAR’s aluminum structural requirements
- Complete refresh of all core curriculum (263 courses) aligned to the updated Protocol
- Incorporating more hands-on live training, shorter course times, more online courses with increased interactivity, all leading to less time out of the shop and off the floor for technicians
- Increased frequency of Welding Training & Certification skill re-verification, moving from 5 years to 3 years, and no longer requiring course repeat when skills are reverified.
- Automatic recognition for training with other providers that are I-CAR Sustaining Partners through I-CAR’s Training Alliance
- Industry Training Relative to I-CAR Knowledge and Skills Area published as a companion cross-walk to acknowledge both OEM and Supplier Training Alliance courses approved to Protocol and Alliance qualification criteria
- New tools for completing, planning and tracking I-CAR training
- New learning interfaces, mobile technology and reporting functionality to make completing, tracking and planning I-CAR training much easier for customers
- An unlimited training subscription for Gold Class shops to protect shops from turnover, and encourage building bench strength by better training for all technicians