Snap Shop: Basin Collision Repair
LOCATION: Vernal, Utah OWNER: Roger Hutcheon SIZE: 11,300 square feet STAFF: 12 (1 owner, 1 estimator/manager, 1 office manager/accountant, 2 detailers, 3 painters, 4 body technicians) AVERAGE MONTHLY CAR COUNT: 114 ANNUAL REVENUE: $3.2 million
1. IMPRESSIVE LANDSCAPING
Those driving past the edge of town in Vernal, Utah, are likely to take note of Basin Collision Repair. For starters, a longtime lot tech maintains its landscaping religiously, trimming bushes, and mowing the lawn. The main motivation for the manicured landscaping is Hutcheon’s desire to alter the image of gritty, industrial repair facilities.
“We just didn’t want it to look like the general view of a body shop,” notes Hutcheon, who has owned the Utah shop since 2008.
2. RUSTIC STONEWORK
When Basin Collision Repair moved to its current facility in 2013, Hutcheon invested $13,000 in stone masonry work on the outside of his facility’s office area in an effort to help the shop fit in to its residential surroundings. He also wanted his shop to look presentable for the long run.
“I didn’t want anything that would deteriorate over time,” Hutcheon says in reference to the stone work.
“I actually bought an old house, tore it down, and built this facility where it was at. And it has worked out fantastically,” adds Hutcheon, whose business garners 4.8-star reviews on Google.
3. SLEEK SIGNAGE
To prove he planned to run his business for the long haul, Hutcheon made a long-distance request to a sign company in Salt Lake City, approximately 200 miles away. After a slew of emailed rough drafts, graphic art and sketches from the folks at Impact Signs in Salt Lake City, Hutcheon had a nearly $15,000 sign that was the envy of the competition in his town of 20,000.
Hutcheon took the shop’s longtime color scheme and brightened it ever so slightly to blend in with his building’s partially stone facade.
4. EFFICIENT SHOP FLOOR
Earlier in his career, Hutcheon always felt it was inefficient for shops to feature traditional layouts that required employees to shuffle vehicles in and out of the shop at various stages of the repair process. So, when Basin Collision Repair moved to its new location, Hutcheon configured the shop floor with lean, efficient philosophies in mind.
Now, the Utah facility’s paint booth is confined to a corner of the building. Meanwhile, fast-track repair work occurs on the middle of the shop floor, and vehicles are then driven directly into the detail bay, while non-driveable repairs have dedicated stalls.
“You’re not driving vehicles in and out, backing them outside” now, notes Hutcheon, whose shop produces a 5.7-day cycle time. “It’s for the comfort of the techs, because it’s hard to cool a 10,000-pound truck down when it’s 100 degrees, and it’s hard to heat them when they’re 10 degrees. And, happy techs are efficient techs.”