In today’s competitive marketplace, it’s important to take every opportunity to enhance profitability. On September 12, 2013, more than 100 individuals did just that by attending the Automotive Industries Association (AIA) of Canada’s Western Canada Automotive Service Providers Forum at the beautiful Elk Ridge Resort in Waskesiu Lake, Saskatchewan.
“The success of the Canadian automotive aftermarket industry is dependent on the success of each level of the supply chain, which is why AIA is committed to helping automotive service providers reach their full potential and improve the profitability of their shops through events like the Western Forum,” said Marc Brazeau, president and CEO, AIA Canada.
This year’s participants, half of which were automotive service providers, were treated to a number of high-quality presentations by incredible speakers. James Shields kicked off the presentations by addressing advancements in vehicle technology, followed by Rui Martins who discussed business management processes that ensure prosperity, and Susan Hitchon who presented strategies for embracing TPMS technology. Robert Scott (Glenwood Auto), Bill Bentley (Clavet Service Station), and Don Klassen (Crestview Auto Service) also gave wonderful shop owner presentations in an interview format, led by Allan Janssen of Newcom Business Media.
This year’s Forum also featured a highly informative panel discussion on skills shortages in the industry. The discussion, which was moderated by Sean Corcelli of Uni-Select, examined key trends in skills shortages as well as a variety of recruitment strategies, government programs, and incentives to help deal with employment issues. The panel featured Bill Bentley of Clavet Service Station, Andreas Hofstaetter of Employment and Social Development Canada, and Penny Sommervill of Saskatchewan Labour Market Services, and was a great addition to the event.
The presentations were followed by a reception and dinner, and the successful day was closed by an engaging speech by Olympic Gold Medalist and former member of the Canadian Women’s Hockey Team, Cheryl Pounder, who brought along her gold medals from the Salt Lake City and Torino Olympic Games and spoke to attendees about the importance of one’s journey. Cheryl kept her audience on the edge of their seats and patiently answered questions and posed for pictures following her presentation.
The next day, more than 85 golfers hit the links at the Elk Ridge Resort for the Saskatchewan Division’s annual golf tournament.
Thanks to everyone who attended and made this year’s Western Canada Forum another great success! Be sure to check AIA’s Facebook page in the coming days for photos from the event.