Sarah Bruce
Public Relations / Member Engagement
Email: sarahbruce@ara.bc.ca
Phone: 604-432-7987

71 Percent of Industry Optimistic

Since the beginning of COVID-19, the ARA has conducted four industry surveys to better understand how automotive sectors are coping. The results from the first three surveys can be found here. The results of the fourth industry survey are as follows:

The majority of responders say they have seen a decline in revenue of more than 30 percent:

82 percent of responders have applied for financial aid through either the 75 percent Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS), The Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) for small businesses, and/or The Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA).

59 percent say these financial assistance programs have reduced layoff and prevented closure and 71 percent are optimistic that their business will remain open.

Every responder reported a change to the way they do business due to COVID-19. The following are some of the changes implemented since March:

  • Vehicle home pickup/delivery
  • Vehicle disinfection procedures
  • Improved online repair updates to customer
  • Improved digital payment infrastructure
  • Decreased lobby seating
  • Taking extra precautions with senior customers
  • Mobile estimating
  • No longer accepting walk-ins, appointment only
  • Physical Distancing
  • Proving personal protections for employers
  • Installed plexiglass dividers between customers and staff (some glass shops got creative and even installed windshields)
  • Closed office to the general public until a request is called in or emailed

70 percent of responders said they expect some of the new COVID-19 procedures and policies to become best practices in industry even after the pandemic. Services such as home pick-up and delivery, mobile estimating, pre- and post-service vehicle disinfection could continue after a vaccine because it demonstrates improvement to customer satisfaction and safety.

The ARA also asked what advocacy projects you want to see us engaged in order to improve the automotive industry. Based on the results the ARA will:

  • Continue with regular advocacy initiatives and projects
  • Provide health and safety information concerning COVID-19
  • Keep providing information about the government’s response
  • Offer education/training and/or webinars
  • Communicate with government to ensure shops are being understood and are able to remain viable contributors to the economy
  • Carry on being the voice of the automotive industry in order to represent you

Remember, the ARA is your association. We are here to support you. If you have a question, concern, or suggestion, please reach out to us at communications@ara.bc.ca.