I felt it important to write my thoughts, as the Schaeffler REPXPERT brand ambassador, about the value they are adding to my garage folk and indeed the entire independent garage sector.
We have all been through challenging times over the last couple of years, but I feel that independent garage owners have never been better placed to tap into the new wave of vehicle owners that are realising the value of independent travel.
This has meant that workshops are busier than I can ever remember and that, of course, has brought challenges to the whole aftermarket.
Two to three-week lead times are now the new normal, and the recruitment and retention of good people is a real challenge.
However, one of the success stories coming out of all this is Schaeffler’s REPXPERT, the free service platform from the market leading Tier One OE clutch and bearing manufacturer.
Schaeffler realised a few years back that there was a disconnect between themselves and their front-end clients, the independent garage businesses up and down the country.
Thus, the REPXPERT programme was born, along with the more recent addition of the fantastic interactive App, a revolutionary concept designed to support garages like never before.
REPXPERT sets out to offer professional technicians free advice on all things technical, right across the product range, boosted not only by the huge TecRMI resource library of OE data and fitting instructions and labour times, but also their Schaeffler’s own technical bulletins and parts catalogue which is driven by a vehicle registration lookup and a VIN scanning function.
There is even a shop where garages can redeem the bonus points they collect for quality workshop clothing, merchandise, tools or even training.
This type of support was, up until a handful of years ago, only ever available to vehicle manufacturers.
REPXPERT is a huge benefit to all independents, so I urge all garage owners to download the app from the Apple Store or Google Play – and tell your technicians and front of house staff too.
You are not alone, and the support that the entire Schaeffler team offers, including the REPXPERT technical trainers, is second to none.
Go on – what are you waiting for?