The Vehicle Damage Assessor (VDA) Standard has been approved and published by the Institute of Apprenticeships, AutoRaise has announced.
At present, there is no apprenticeship framework for a VDA, meaning that anyone wishing to undertake this role has to learn on the job and then - after a minimum of three years - undertake an industry professional qualification to confirm their knowledge.
This route provides practical knowledge over a number of years but doesn’t provide a structured approach to learning and development of skills alongside development of practical skills, AutoRaise said, claiming that the new Standard will change that.
AutoRaise are supporting development of the Assessment plan with a working group of employers and training provides, facilitated by the IfA.
Indra Nauth, head of engagement, education and learners at AutoRaise, said: “The new templates that the IfA are using to create assessment plans, pre-populated with information from the Standard, will hopefully reduce the time it takes to develop the assessment plan."
Set at level 4, equivalent to the first year of a Bachelor’s degree and anticipated to take up to three years to achieve, this Standard recognises the importance of the VDA role within the sector and sets the bar at a level to reflect this.
Rainbow Bodyshops’ Earle Avann said: “Everything is geared around the estimate we carry out. The skill of the VDA in putting the estimate together, negotiating, talking to clients and liaising with workshop team members is pivotal to the success of our business.
"It’s easily the most important but most overlooked role”.