As EVs become more common, there are steps service providers can take to ensure they accommodate motorists who drive these vehicles easily and efficiently.
Owning an automotive service repair business today is a lot different than it was years ago.
Technology is moving faster than ever, and we see it every day, in the news, during business seminars and events and of course, within our own industry.
I am talking about electric vehicles (EVs). Billions of dollars are being invested into Zero Emissions Vehicle (ZEV) technology and production, right here in Canada.
It’s a reality that our industry has seen many research and development papers on how this will affect the environment and help us to achieve Zero emissions. Government, manufacturers, suppliers, repairers, recyclers, and insurers are now focusing on what they need to do to prepare for the future.
There are many questions regarding EVs however, including infrastructure and of course, what happens when they reach the end of the road. Currently, there is a lot of discussion taking place around End-of-Life (EOL) electric vehicles in Canada and how they can be disposed of properly and safely.
To help with this, the Automotive Recyclers of Canada (ARC) has developed a Roadmap and Implementation Plan for the management of End-of-Life (EOL) electric vehicles in this country. ARC is now communicating with other auto sector influencers and the Automotive Aftermarket Retailers of Ontario (AARO) is participating in these findings and based on the results, determining what the next steps will be.
In the automotive aftermarket, we all play an important role in ensuring we have program materials and training to ensure the safe and environmentally friendly dismantling and parts usage of all end-of-life EVs in Canada.
AARO is delivering training on EVs in-person with different makes and models that technicians can see and work on safely. To learn more about this EV training, please contact Patty Kettles at [email protected].
Showcase your efforts
It’s important to let your customers know that your technicians are highly trained to work on these electric vehicles. You want to demonstrate that you have invested in training your technicians and have the certificates of completion of these courses visible in the waiting area, so your customers can see them.
Advertise that you specialize in EVs and that your equipment and staff are trained to diagnose, repair, and keep their vehicles to the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) standards. This past year, I have seen more shops using EVs as shuttle vehicles with advertising on them that shows that the business services electric vehicles.
Besides ensuring your technicians are properly trained, you need to ensure your front counter staff are too. They need to be able to ask the customer if they have any questions about their vehicle or when they are ready to purchase a newer one. You also need to ensure that your staff are there to answer any questions they may have before buying. After all, you know your customers driving habits well since you have been servicing their vehicles for years.
For EV customers, you also need to make sure you invest in charging infrastructure and have designated parking for those EVs. You also need to make sure your waiting area is clean and comfortable—after all, would you want to sit there while your own vehicle is being serviced?
The same goes for your washrooms, you want to make sure they are regularly cleaned and stocked. Ultimately the goal is to make it easy, convenient and transparent for your customers to do business with you, whether they happen to drive an EV or a conventional vehicle.