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Mobile repair services rise 'significantly'

Date: 27 January 2011   |   Author: Rachel Burgess

Mobile repair services are on the rise, partly due to increasing numbers of fleet managers paying for damage directly instead of paying out expensive excesses to insurance companies.

Steve Thompson, managing director of Nationwide Mobile Repairs, said he has seen a "significant increase" in fleets choosing to pay for damage independently through mobile services, which cut costs such as hire cars and employee downtime.

"Generally speaking, I think excesses have gone up so fleet managers are having to repair themselves - they haven't got insurance companies to pay for hire and repair," said Thompson.

He continued that as insurers wise up to using mobile repair services, more and more of Nationwide Mobile Repairs' business will come either from insurers directly or from fleets self-funding repairs.

Nationwide Accident Repair Services' mobile arm launched in June last year after a two-year pilot, which initially began with de-fleet centres and car rental companies. Its service is "absolutely geared towards fleets" said Thompson, with average time from notification to completion of job currently at 3.5 days. It currently works with insurers and directly with businesses, and its three-strong sales team is actively seeking work with leasing companies and 50-plus fleets.

Beginning with four vans in 2008, it now has 36 and intends to grow that to 75 by the end of this year.

The business runs alongside windscreen arm Nationwide Motorglass, which has been running for six years but relaunched in June 2010, and 70-site bodyshop business Nationwide Crash Repair Centres.

Thompson said that businesses that use a range of the firm's services benefit from one point of contact for windscreens, bodyshop work and mobile repairs, cutting cost and time compared with dealing with alternative companies for the different aspects. He added that it also "gives customers the opportunity to leverage their relationships with us".

Furthermore, fixed menu pricing for mobile repairs and the convenience of repairs carried out on site means customer satisfaction is currently above 90% based on independent surveys.

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