*Repairathon: The process that ensures that (rental) companies can have a large amount of cars repaired in a bounded period of time, enabling them to keep their cars on the road as long as possible whilst also adhering to the OEM return date and/or mileage limitations.

Companies that manage fleets are faced with the pressure of de-fleeting a large volume of cars in the best condition possible in the fastest time-frame feasible. De-fleeting and buy-back are both words used to reflect this process; and Fixico offers a ‘Repairathon’ service to address the need for speed and quality whilst using an efficient solution. Rental companies especially often have buy-back agreements, which means that cars have to be returned to the OEM or dealer in a specific period of time or after a specific amount of kilometres have been driven. For example, our partner Sixt needs to return up to 75 additional cars per week during peak times to their supplier. This can prove to be a hassle to both the companies managing the fleet and the preferred repairers who work with them. Therefore, companies such as Avis Budget Group (ABG), Sixt, and Athlon partnered up with Fixico to make this process more manageable and efficient.

De-fleeting creates challenges from all sides

Repairathons are an essential process for companies that manage fleets, but it can bring about many challenges. As an example of the aforementioned de-fleeting challenges, costs can add up if the cars are not repaired in time due to parking space, insurance, and an additional late fee. Depreciation is also a problem as cars decrease in value. There also exists the issue of seasonality, whereby companies often have Repairathons at peak times such as September and March, following summer and winter holidays. This can add stress to the company that is managing the fleet. On the other hand, the preferred repairers are tasked with handling a substantial volume of repairs in a short amount of time which can add strain to their workplace capacity; meaning that these Repairathons become a burden for both body repair shops and companies that manage fleets.

ABG was also familiar with the challenges described above. ABG needs to return cars to their partner after a specific mileage and/or time. This proved to be an issue when they had to repair a bulk of 40 light commercial vehicles (LCV) at the same time towards a tight deadline.  It’s important to return the cars to the OEM in perfect state to avoid additional repair costs and late fees. The damages that need to be repaired tend to be cosmetic, rather than considerable. They had been quoted by an expert service, but the damage was too substantial for a quick repair; with the time offered being 3-4 months. However, our solution, which is our digital platform, is dedicated to making this situation more efficient; triggering a Repairathon.

How Sixt, ABG and Athlon managed to turn a problem into an opportunity

Our digital solution was utilised by ABG when they submitted the damages to our platform with specific requirements including quick collection, and befitting quality repairs to their batch. Our digitally connected marketplace meant that Fixico could allocate repairs smartly and efficiently with a repair time of a week and a half instead of several months with the use of our smart matchmaking tool. In addition, costs were saved by 8-12% for the repairs themselves, with the additional interest costs that could have been added by months of repairs greatly reduced. Depreciation costs were also saved as faster repair times allowed for the value of the cars to be maintained for longer, which is crucial as manufacturers also strictly inspect cars for damages.

This pressure in Repairathons is a complication that could be a huge hurdle for several companies, and not just ABG. Our solution also assisted and continues to assist our partners in returning a large amount of fleet in a short period of time. For example, we help manage the repair of more than double the amount of expected repairs for Athlon, a leasing company often tasked with returning a large fleet as fast as possible in the best quality available for their rental department. For our partner Sixt, a car rental company, we also help with their Repairathons. When Sixt has to return a large volume of cars, either due to unexpected external events which lead to delay or an expected peak of a generally large amount of fleet due to seasonality, Fixico can provide repair solutions that make car repair much more efficient and digitalised, whilst also keeping quality a priority. These repair solutions also can help predict the most common damages based on data from previous car damages. With Fixico’s solution, cycle times were shortened, repairs were much more swift, and cars’ shelf-life could be extended; benefitting all parties involved.

Digitally allocating and managing repairs to save costs & time

Fixico offers a digital solution to the hassle of Repairathons, which can make car repair a more efficient process for all parties involved. Our solution lowers cycle times by up to 30% and we can easily facilitate triple the average repair volume per week with our network of over 2,500 repairers across Europe and beyond. Sixt uses their preferred repair network in collaboration with Fixico, but our platform can also do this with any partner’s preferred network; making the platform customisable to every partner. Our buy-back service assists companies by making car repair more manageable and ensuring that each individual car is tended to by a suitable repair shop.

In our Repairathons, we provide our own buy-back manager which can help with allocating repairs to suitable body repair shops, streamlining the whole process. We assign a dedicated project manager who assists in overseeing the repairs, whilst also being the point of contact for the client. And through our smart matchmaking tool, the body repair shops are selected based on costs that can be pre-determined by the partner, repair times, specialisation and most importantly; repair quality. The whole process from start to finish is transparent and interactive too, as companies can get insights on the status of the fleet through our partner dashboard and can also intervene if necessary.

It’s clear that de-fleeting can be a frustrating experience for both companies and body repair shops. However, Fixico’s solution is well-suited to alleviate this stress. Whether Repairathon pressure is due to common seasonality or more unexpected inconveniences such as chip shortages, we can step in with our digital end-to-end platform and our international body repair shop network to allow for more seamless and less burdening experiences for everyone involved across the board. Repairathons can become a positive challenge rather than a hurdle.