OEC Acquisition of NuGen IT Will Further Assist Collision Repairers to Meet Requirements of Insurers
By Autobody News on October 13, 2020
Autobody News recently talked with Pete Tagliapietra, founder and president of NuGen IT, about the company’s acquisition by OEConnection (OEC) in July and what it means for the collision repair industry.
OEC, established in 2000, is a leading parts fulfillment software solution provider for OEM distribution networks.
As a result of the OEC acquisition of NuGen IT, Tagliapietra said the companies are working together to deliver a combined technology platform that will not only facilitate a substantive step forward in refining the collision repair industry, but will also drive higher levels of efficiency over what is available in the market today.
“As much as DRPs impacted the way collision repairers process damaged vehicles since the early 1990s, it is inevitable that technology and OEM-certified repair networks will impact this long-standing model,” said Tagliapietra. “The industry is moving toward a model in which OEMs will have significantly more influence on where and how to repair vehicles.”
The discussion led to further questions.
How did your experience working in three different market segments lead you to establish NuGen IT?
I began working in the collision repair industry at a young age doing all the tasks technicians didn’t want to do at a collision repair facility. After completing my higher education, I spent 10 years in automotive retail, specifically in collision repair management, and then had a decade of auto claims experience working for two different insurance companies. Following that, I worked for a collision repair database and estimating system information provider for 15 years.
Looking back, I realize how fortunate I am to have worked in these three market segments of our industry. My experience has given me a good perspective on how to create balance and minimize friction among those segments.
In the late 1980s, I met Dayle Phillips, who became my business partner at NuGen IT. Dayle, who was employed at a leading-edge software development company, often collaborated with me to discuss possible technology solutions to an auto claims or collision repair problem. We found our skills complemented one another.
I’ve never met anybody like Dayle who understands a business issue and can come up with a solution that applies technology and enhances the process significantly, eliminating the amount of human task associated with it.
After 35 years of experience in the industry, I felt it would be an ideal time to start my own business in 2004. As a result, I established NuGen IT and Dayle joined the company in January of 2006. It has been an incredible run since then.
What was the primary focus of NuGen IT and how has the company grown?
From the onset, the goal was to leverage the CIECA (Collision Industry Electronic Commerce Association) Standards the collision industry embraced. The strategy was, and has been, to offer open solution platforms to the insurance and collision repair communities.
Limiting the proprietary software environment with the exchange of information between insurers and collision repairers was having a positive impact on the industry. We set out to create an open environment that would alleviate estimating system mandates for insurance companies, allowing collision repairers to select and license the estimating system that provides the best outcome for both parties.
Over the years, NuGen IT continuously reinvested into research and development. We typically look at where gaps exist in the process for collision repairers and insurers. Then, we identify accuracy, efficiency and productivity issues, as well as technology to further refine the process in various end-user workflows.
We rely heavily on our business-rules-driven compliance technology to accomplish this through the products we develop. I believe this, along with other technologies---such as our ability to accurately transform a PDF of an estimate back into the CIECA Legacy EMS (Estimate Management System) or BMS (Business Message Suite) data formats---helped set our company apart from competitors.
Our product offering also heavily focuses on Business Process Compliance. Business Process Compliance utilizes computer software to analyze an estimate or just about any other formatted document. Hence, an insurance appraiser or body shop service manager knows when the estimate is not in compliance with the database, external or internal policies, and procedures or regulatory requirements.
The technology is compatible with any estimating system and almost any formatted template. As a result, collision repairers use one compliance tool rather than purchasing multiple tools to meet their needs and requirements of their insurance company partners.
NuGen IT’s product offerings incorporate robotics automation whenever possible. Software robots can perform the analysis function on behalf of the user, so the correct outcome is delivered the same way every time, creating accuracy, uniformity and consistency.
The nice thing about robotics automation and software intelligence, commonly referred to today as machine learning, is computers can “perform an outcome” the same way every time based on the input of many different variables.
Initially, we developed our products primarily for insurance companies and giving them open network capabilities to deliver an assignment directly to a network or non-network repair facility. As long as a collision facility had an internet connection and a computer, they could receive an assignment and then import the administrative data into their system(s).