Why become a CIECA Member

CIECA is about making connections:

Electronic and Business connections. Powered by our members, CIECA connects your company to resources that help drive innovation and market growth, create new opportunities for collaboration and foster the development and adoption of critical industry standards.

CIECA’s work benefits the collision industry, as a whole, and, most specifically,  the six industry segments represented by CIECA. Therefore, it is important to articulate the additional benefits that belong to CIECA members only. Also, see Member Benefits Matrix.

Charting the Course - Establishing the Direction 

CIECA Members establish the priorities for the Standards Development Committees (SDC) and Board Committees' projects. Planning and prioritization is performed at least once a year at a Strategic Planning session and monitored throughout the year. Only CIECA Members can decide which projects are staffed. Only CIECA Members can assume leadership positions on SDCs and Board Level Committees.

Sitting in the Front Row – Advanced Access to Information

CIECA Members are in the "front row" of the electronic commerce ("EC") event. They have advanced notice and access to all CIECA public and private communications including position papers, technology documents, committee materials and other industry documents.

With this first hand, advanced information, CIECA Members are positioned to be an early implementers of technology and standards. With advanced knowledge of leading-edge information, a CIECA Member will be able to plan EC implementations within his/her company in advance of their competition, rather than reacting and playing “catch up” once the work has been completed and published.

Developing the Standards – Insuring that your Company’s interests are met

CIECA develops EC standards for the collision industry. Member leadership and participation virtually guarantees that the collision industry EC standards will accommodate members' requirements. Aside from highly unusual and highly proprietary requirements, the EC standards can accommodate almost anything.

In addition, as a CIECA Corporate Member, you will have full access to the CIECA standards, implementation guides and standard codes, including the personal, nontransferable right to use them in your company’s business and (Corporate Technology Members only) to incorporate them into software that your company develops and provides to third parties while a CIECA Corporate member.

Implementation Investment Protection – Lead with the Standard

Since CIECA Members develop the industry solution, they know what it is, how to use it, and when to use it, better than and long before others in the industry. This translates into fewer false starts and fewer re-investments in technology solutions.

Likewise, it helps to avoid investment in something that does not meet the direction of the rest of the industry. Insurers can no longer compel their repair partners to do electronic commerce differently that they do for the Top 20 Insurers. The use of technology requires large investments for shops and insurers, and those investments must be leveraged through standardization, or they will not happen at all.

The best way to get full return on your electronic commerce investments is to leverage them across virtually all repair partners, even those with minimal activity. Standardization protects your investment and facilitates business and technical success.

Working together – Implementation Partners

The biggest challenge of electronic commerce for most companies is learning to work together with their trading partners. The CIECA structure brings industry people together to learn together; car rental agencies, glass shops, collision shops, parts suppliers, and information vendors. Representatives from all segments are ensuring compatibility of systems, especially for insurers. The goal is to create a win-win situation that keeps everyone enthusiastic and working together for mutual benefit.

Industry consistency – An Advantage in Numbers

CIECA projects address common industry issues. There is no long term, competitive advantage to be gained in the areas that CIECA addresses. Therefore, performing them in a common, standard manner, is itself a big advantage.

Participation in the development and use of standard industry solutions ensures minimal investment; it is a way to share your costs with your trading partners and competitors. For example, an insurer that attempts to train all its repair partners in a unique communications method assumes the entire burden. One that uses the industry common method shares the training burden with all other insurers using the common solution. This is particularly critical when dealing with numerous small businesses.

Networking/Training – Learn Together and Share Your Experiences

The standards setting process is an outstanding networking opportunity for you and your company. The ability to communicate with other industry members with similar issues and problems, is of immense practical value. Many companies in other industries have discovered that with leading technologies such as this, their people who participate in such forums become significantly more knowledgeable and therefore, more valuable. There is no way to directly measure this benefit, however, our members know it exists and will share their experiences with you.

This educational experience and transference of knowledge is not limited to participants and members of CIECA. Non-participating company employees learn and grow based on the shared experiences of the members that do participate.  Some companies hold internal workshops to further educate/train other employees. CIECA staff can also assist in providing this education/training.

Overall costs – Reducing the Cost of Doing Business

The consistency principle applies to the cost of technology, whether it is hardware, software, or communications. Standardized and widely used solutions usually cost less to acquire and to support.

CIECA research indicates that shops employing all three estimating platforms lose $30 per vehicle repaired in additional overhead. In other words, a single system would save them $30 for every car repaired. Insurers will save money if repairers can net more profit from smaller margins due to cost control.

Therefore, it benefits everyone to support and use standard methods. Let your partners know that you support standards. Join CIECA today and start enjoying the benefits of CIECA Membership.