Efficiency. Lean processes. Productivity. Streamlining. All are buzzwords used in shops across the country to do one main thing — increase profitability.
So if you could cut a process you use in the shop, sometimes 10s of times a day, from roughly 40 minutes to less than 10, it could mean some serious dollars for your business.
SWAF Color System Manager John Ceglarek said the tool not only speeds the color matching process, but also makes a place in the paint department for younger, less experienced technicians. “Shops used to rely on the skills and knowledge of an expert painter with 30 years of experience,” Ceglarek said. “But these types of painters are now starting to retire and we need to make room for younger technicians. This tool is about improving process, lean and shop throughput. You can get it right the first time, and anyone can do it.”
With FormulaExpress 2.0, painters and technicians will spend much less time picking the right color for the job, and much more time delivering vehicles. The system intuitively sorts formulas by popularity instead of the “standard with alternates” method widely used by many existing color retrieval systems. Additionally, FormulaExpress 2.0 has a unique patent-pending Color Filter feature, which helps the painter select from a list of color variations by selecting a few, very simple, user-friendly filters — a first in the market.
The tool was first implemented in a shop in South Dakota, and has since been rolling out through the country. SWAF plans to complete rollout throughout the Americas, and then globally.
Designed to work with multiple platforms including tablets, smartphones and PCs, FormulaExpress 2.0 also provided simple storing, tracking and reporting. With access to more than 750,000 color formulas, the system is functional with every automotive finishes intermix and factory pack system Sherwin-Williams provides.
“Color produces a lot of anxiety,” Ceglarek says. “We are using every trick we can think of to make it as easy as possible."