Frank Gerardy was the first contractor to join the IRS Group in 2016. Since then, he has been managing the Frank Gerardy GmbH sites in Polch and Koblenz as Managing Director and in parallel supports the further development of IRS Karosserie und Lack with operational know-how and his excellent network. In 2019 Frank Gerardy became Co-Managing Director alongside Norbert Dohmen. Now the 49-year-old is assuming sole responsibility for IRS Karosserie und Lack GmbH with around 1000 of the total of 2200 employees in the entire group. The management of Frank Gerardy GmbH is to pass into other hands in the course of the year.
“The German IRS division K&L has developed very well in the last few years. In the beginning, we had to do a lot of convincing, but in the meantime body and paint entrepreneurs are recognizing the advantages of a strong group, regardless of the current corona crisis”, Frank Gerardy states.
Focus on customer satisfaction and profitable growth
Frank Gerardy sees the focus of his work in creating optimal conditions for high customer satisfaction, motivated employees and sustainable profitability in the K&L operations of the IRS Group. “Strategically, we continue to focus on growth through new locations, while at the same time optimizing the capacity in the workshops that already belong to IRS”. The intensive cooperation with the SmartRepair and Hagel business unit is also important to him. Together, the two divisions of the IRS Group offer the full range of damage repair services and can thus respond very flexibly to the needs of customers.
In recent months, the management team has been working intensively on the definition and implementation of standards to be guaranteed to customers at all IRS locations. In addition to investments in technical equipment and the digitalisation of production and service processes, cooperation agreements with equipment partners such as PPG or HGS were also concluded under the leadership of Frank Gerardy.
Employee development at the IRS Academy
Gerardy describes the program for the qualification and motivation of employees as at least as important as technical investments. “Accident repair is a high-tech process and is becoming increasingly complex due to electromobility and driver assistance systems. In order to permanently keep the level of knowledge of our teams at the highest level, we recently established the IRS Academy in Polch.” Behind this are ultra-modern diagnostic and painting technology and a demanding training programme in which the IRS works together with experts such as KtD, Dekra and Hella Gutmann. Due to the current circumstances, however, the academy will be suspended for the time being.
Strong team spirit
The IRS Group has so far coped well with the corona situation. Central crisis management is setting the strategic course for the Body & Paint and Smart Repair & Hail. In contrast, the development and implementation of ideas for the flexible adaptation of services to legal requirements is taking place in a lively dialogue at site level. Frank Gerardy comments: “We are using the creativity and commitment of everyone to meet this challenge. It is this team spirit that makes our Group strong and I am very much looking forward to the projects that we want to implement in the K&L division in the coming years”.
CEO Norbert Dohmen, who will now once again devote himself increasingly to IRS’s other business areas and markets, emphasizes: “I could not imagine anyone better than Frank Gerardy to take our largest and fastest-growing division in Germany to the next level and I look forward to working with him in the future.
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