Friends and forums: CCIF Vancouver “a well-run success,” says Collision Repair columnist

Vancouver, British Columbia — The Canadian collision repair industry is on the heels of another successful Canadian Collision Industry Forum (CCIF), full of networking, new products and presentations from the biggest names in the business secondary live from Vancouver, including frequent Collision Repair columnist, Stefano Liessi.

Liessi, a featured CCIF speaker this time around and a fan of the forum in general, delivered a talk on electric vehicles and how techs need to anticipate the rapid changes that continue to consume the industry.

“It’s a new world of learning for our technicians, who will have to start early in their careers,” he said. Collision Repair following the event.

“The biggest hurdle here is understanding that the electric vehicle is more than just a typical model change. It’s an additional career beyond what we already do on a daily basis. There is no room for compromises and shortcuts with these electrified Duracell strollers.

Discussing similar ideas, Enterprise Holdings Vice President of Replacement and Leisure, Mary Mahoney, hosted a talk in which she discussed the opportunities presented by the potential of connected vehicles, particularly how lost or stolen vehicles can be tracked and returned to their owners.

Simon Wong, a risk consultant with global accounting firm Ernst and Young, discussed the dangers of ransomware and how hackers seize vulnerabilities in businesses of all sizes.

Liessi shared his thoughts on Wong’s presentation: “I found it fascinating to see how there is an entire industry around ransomware and the business model hierarchy behind it. An effectively well-oiled machine that needs more than a McAffee update. The chronological order in which ransomware sets up and how it infiltrates your business is beyond anyone’s comprehension. What I took away is that it’s not the size or the nature of the business; it all depends on whether you leave a door ajar.

Finally, Keith Mew, an automotive refinishing instructor at Vancouver Community College, spoke to the audience about what the automotive aftermarket can do to compete in today’s declining skilled trades market.

“A great, heartfelt presentation to impress on the industry that it’s more than the classroom that needs to make changes if you want to attract and keep new employees,” Liessi said.

“Mentoring, salaries and education are some of the carrots that lead to staff retention. Train from within, recognizing that your technicians need to attend classes to take home new and updated information to get better at their job and better for your business.

Liessi offered the following final thought on CCIF Vancouver 2022:

“Overall, I see CCIF Vancouver as a success for all involved, a well-run show that wouldn’t be worth it without its sponsors; kudos to them. As with any human being, a few days and good food is the number one cause of information leakage, a statistic I pleasantly invented from ordinary observations. Take the time to revisit presentations posted on the CCIF website in the near future to trigger that memory and capitalize on some of the key points that you have found beneficial to you and your business.

CCIF Vancouver 2022 took place October 6-7 at the Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel.