‘Doom and gloom’ news items have had more than their fair share of headline space over recent months.
So it’s good to read and share some positive news too.
The good news we’re sharing comes from DVSA who has published its annual review, which outlines their 2019-2020 financial year activities.
Despite what many of us in the industry may have expected to be reading, it appears over 39.1 million MOT certificates were issued in the period mentioned above. And that generated an income of £63.8 million for them.
It doesn’t seem like five minutes ago that we were reading and sharing news that we were all in for a bumpy ride, and it was highly likely customers would stay away, and many businesses would crash.
That’s still true to an extent of course. It certainly hasn’t been an easy time, and there have been too many casualties along the way. But most of us have to agree with the report’s view. The DVSA was quick to grant the six-month MOT extension to 7.5 million motorists; ensuring widespread chaos was averted (our interpretation of their opinion!)
Those customers are now returning to MOT Stations and garages – especially now the August 1st deadline for the end of the exemption has passed.
Fraud, dishonesty and negligence
The report goes on to mention the 643 cases of ‘fraud, dishonesty and negligence’ – and confirmed that’s a 36% increase on cases identified and addressed compared to those in 2018. That statistic is not quite as positive, but as with any industry, fraudsters will continually try to find ways around systems.
Also in the report is confirmation that although test fees and MOT slots have not changed since 2010, if they had, and if you also took inflation into account, that figure would be +17%.
New, improved guidance for MOT testers
A positive change the DVSA has made this year has been to the ditch the previously used tester guidance for MOTs.
It’s been replaced with guidance that’s far more user friendly and focused and aims to make sure testers are achieving ‘higher than high’ standards each time by using logic and structure. We can see how the DVSA has achieved a 90% ‘thumbs up’ from testers across the UK; and our thumb is pointing upwards too!
The guide can be found here if you haven’t already seen it.
MOT certificates development
The DVSA recently developed its ‘replacement MOT certificate service’ as part of GOV.UK’s wider ‘MOT history service’.
Customers can now access this user friendly service 24/7 if they need a replacement for a lost or damaged pass/fail certificate. For now it covers motorbikes, cars and all passenger vehicles – however it will soon extend to buses, lorries and trailers.
Chris Price, head of MOT policy at the DVSA has said: “We knew there was demand from the public to replace MOT certificates, and there were many websites selling fakes.”
In the statement he explained how the new online service has eliminated the fakes and helped to reduce fraud.
Garage locations on MOT certificates
Another positive update, in our opinion, is the removal of the garage location from the test certificate. After it was originally added as part of the MOT history service, many concerns were raised around how abuse of this information could potentially lead to domestic violence if victims who had fled their homes were traced by their abusers through the details on an MOT certificate.
The solution came after collaboration with the charity Refuge. Now, the latest 11-digit number from the vehicle’s logbook is needed to access details on the location of the garage.
Regardless of the business we’re in, it’s been the most worrying of times.
But despite that, it’s proven that together we are stronger. That advice and support among peers and from professional bodies can’t be doubted. And if we haven’t taken advantage of this advice and support we can only blame ourselves.
The situation we found ourselves in from March this year is not over yet, and there will undoubtedly be more ‘fallout’. But don’t you agree it’s beginning to feel more positive? That a new way to move forward is being discovered?
Many businesses have suffered and some have sadly closed, that can’t be ignored. But many more have changed the way they think, the way they operate and the way they value customers. From those changes it could be that a step change we didn’t even realise was needed is taking place – and, you could argue, for the better.
If you’re ready to know how CDT can support you with the necessary training to move your MOT business towards a positive future, call Karena on 07734859604 now!