By Vince Edivan
If you are reading this, you are very likely already a member of ARA. And you may even be well aware of the many member benefits afforded you.
What you might not realize as “benefits” are the things we do every day that you enjoy without realizing the effort it takes behind the scenes to make them available for your easy access.
Here are some that are noteworthy.
Content is King
At ARA, we produce a lot of content that doesn’t cost anything. Some of it is even free to everyone (i.e.: non-members) to benefit from. This content is in the form of:
• Member-only “Recycler Update,” our email news that you should know to help guide business decisions;
• Automotive Recycling magazine – the #1 member benefit – with articles that share best practices or relevant stories of auto recyclers;
• Social media channels, which are filled with panel discussions and relevant articles about what is happening in our industry and what is likely to happen in the future;
• Legislative updates on PPP and other regulatory measures; and,
• ARA’s websites that contain valuable industry information, such as training resources that you’ll find on the public side of ARAUniversity.org or quality vendor information that you can use to shop for new or upgraded services on AutoRecyclingBuyersGuide.com.
There are so many more resources I could list, but I think you get the picture. We are constantly sharing info on something!
I am especially proud that in the last year we’ve exerted a lot of work to build our social media platforms into valuable resources, and we will continue to develop ideas and content that will make it even better. (If you haven’t already, you should check out ARA’s active Facebook page and our growing YouTube channel.)
In 2020, we also developed a media platform to reach “outsiders” in the creation of ARA’s internet reality show called Totaled Treasure. (Check it out, the show has its own Facebook page and YouTube channel.)
Totaled Treasure is an exciting industry awareness “infotainment” piece – a literal treasure hunt inside salvaged cars – and projects a professional image of auto recyclers. It has the potential to change industry mis-perceptions, provide auto recyclers a unique way to highlight their business, and have some fun along the way!
Fighting for Your Rights
Now, would ARA continue to fight for your right and ability to sell recycled original equipment even if you were not a member? The answer is yes.
As hard-working entrepreneurial business owners, you understand that when you receive a substantial benefit it should cost you something. We all agree that there is no such thing as a free ride.
Yet, if you know that somebody is ‘out there’ working hard to prevent legislation or regulations that impede upon your ability to do business and you’re not supporting them – then you are riding on someone else’s dime. I know I’m preaching to the choir here. But it is important to remember that through its daily advocacy efforts, ARA represents the interests of professional automotive recyclers on issues impacting the industry – in the halls of Congress, in all 50 states, and globally.
Training for Success
Anyone who wants it can receive access to quality industry training, 24/7. For those who are not members, it costs a yearly subscription. For ARA members, it is free.
ARA University is the industry’s only online training platform specifically for auto recyclers and their staff on safety, compliance, sales, technical processes, and more.
We will have new courses added! Dismantling, Hybrid and Electric Battery Handling, and a growing library of videotaped facility tours are being made available this year to honor our commitment to producing new, updated and relevant training for you and your staff.
Mentoring is Free, and Priceless
As I write this, we are currently accepting applications for our ARA Peer-to-Peer Mentoring Program. We believe when one rises, we all rise. Now, what other industry offers FREE mentoring from other successful members? That is insane.
Mentoring is available to any ARA-member auto recycling facility owner or manager who is looking for a fresh perspective on their business strategy and daily business operations. Mentors and mentees are paired based on criteria developed to create a successful match.
The return on investment in your ARA membership dues could easily be met just by participating in this program. To apply, email Jessica@a-r-a.org.
Share the Benefits
I bet everyone reading this knows at least one recycler who would benefit from a membership to ARA. And that recycler you’re thinking of right now would probably join if you asked them to. Pick up the phone and ask them to join. Consider it helping us help you!
Vince Edivan is ARA’s Director of Member Relations. In his role, he represents ARA at state industry events, working to connect with current and potential members.