Correction, clarification: An earlier version of this article incorrectly described the scope of Estify Pro’s integration with estimating services. The program currently can be integrated with Audatex and CCC. The same prior version might have unintentionally misled readers regarding Estify Pro’s role; it doesn’t seek to replace the estimating services; rather, it helps estimators populate an estimate with the line items dictated by OEM repair procedures. The article has since been updated to reflect these points.
Estify on Monday announced a pilot program to help populate estimates with line items corresponding to OEM repair procedures and accompanied by the instructions themselves.
“In broad terms, Estify Pro allows repairers to use a software platform that generates OEM documentation for repairs specific to their vehicles within minutes,” Romulus Capital Chief Communications Officer Molly Donovan wrote in an email.
The service will be “widely available by early 2018,” Estify wrote in a news release.
Estify Pro precedes Audatex and CCC, according to Estify CEO Rochelle Thielen. Asked if the program was similar to Mitchell’s two-year-old partnership with Toyota, which populates an estimate with line items corresponding to the OEM’s repair procedures, Thielen wrote in an email:
“Once the user selects the damaged panels or structural area, the repair plan is automatically generated with all OE documentation (repair procedures) attached. The user then selects the estimating system they prefer and sends the repair plan into their estimating system. From there the estimating system takes over, does it’s job and the workflow is uninterrupted making it fast, accurate and easy. Estimators can change anything they chose in the estimating system but they may not need anything once the plan is received from Pro.”
“Estify Pro is not an estimating system,” Thielen wrote Thursday. “It does allow very accurate and complete repair plans to be created with little subjective knowledge. However, it is not a replacement for the vast resources that are required to create a labor database among the other integrated components in the complete process of a repair. We have no intention of replacing the value that these estimating partners provide.”
“Non-reusable parts are specified on the notes, as well as any parts that are 50-50 replacement requiring inspection,” the video narrator states.
“Estify is passionate about providing repairers and carriers with instant and integrated access to OEM repair data,” Thielen said in a statement Monday. “We understand that repairers, carriers, and vehicle manufacturers (OEMs) are all committed to high-quality repairs that restore vehicles to pre-loss condition. However, with so many external pressures surrounding the repair process, manually referencing approved repair procedures is far too time-consuming. … We know we can save more lives and the hundreds of millions of dollars lost to inefficient repairs by getting in front of the repair, integrating directly into the current estimating workflow, and automatically providing all the documentation needed to properly restore the vehicle to pre-loss condition.”
As Thielen and Donovan pointed out, the system attaches OEM repair procedure documentation to the estimate. Thielen wrote in an email that the “procedures are directly from the OEM,” not pulled from a third-party aggregator.
Thielen wrote that Estify has seven automakers “at various stages of build and rollout,” including FCA, Volkswagen and Audi. “The vehicles we cover are current generation and in certain cases one generation back,” she wrote.
“Estify Pro is a great product, a real game changer for the industry,” Mercedes collision manager Benito Cid said in a statement, which Estify stressed was Cid’s personal opinion, not that of Mercedes. “It gives the collision centers the ability to write an accurate, complete repair plan following manufacturer repair procedures and requirements, in a fraction of the time it currently takes. This product could have significant benefits to shop productivity, cycle times and even CSI. I look forward to what this product will do for the industry.”
Thielen also noted that Estify Pro’s preceding the estimate system means “it doesn’t require the end user to have knowledge of an estimating system.” That means shops can tap employees outside of estimators, such as “CSRs and others that may not be pros in an estimating system,” to get the process rolling, according to Thielen.