It’s been two years since the DVSA rolled-out its new MOT risk rating system, but confusion around how the ‘Red-Amber-Green’ (RAG) rating is calculated still remains.
Suffering from a resource shortage, the DVSA created the RAG rating system to make their use of time more efficient. It is basically a ‘torch’ the DVSA can use to highlight potential bad practice in a bid to save themselves time and money.
Autotech Training is helping Vehicle Testing Stations (VTS) cut through RAG rating misconceptions and increase their efficiency and compliance through its capacity as an Authorised Examiner Consultant (AEC).
Red rating confusion
Many VTS owners, who have previously had years of very little DVSA involvement, have spoken of their surprise at going from a green to a red rating.
It’s understandable that a VTS owner or an individual MOT tester will panic if they receive a red rating, but the official advice is: don’t. It doesn’t mean that the DVSA will come knocking and close a VTS down. But they will monitor the situation and potentially pay a visit if the rating doesn’t improve.
There is a lot of confusion around how and why the rating fluctuates, and a general lack of understanding of the performance dashboard. Basically, the whole RAG rating algorithm is difficult to interpret as there are many variables involved.
While the percentage that each variable affects the overall score of a testing station is unknown, it does appear to be weighted heavily towards the individual testers. And, while they don’t need to share their personal RAG score, every MOT tester will want to ensure that they are not the worst rated tester on site.
While a risk rating is not a measure of performance or an indicator that the testing station or individual MOT tester is doing anything wrong, the RAG rating may simply reflect a lack of knowledge and/or identify problematic areas which need improvement.
Likewise, a change in VTS rating could be down to new processes which have recently been put in place within a testing station. This is due to the fact that the rating is largely driven by consistency, and any change in processes could move a VTS from green to amber or red. Eventually though, this rating will refresh itself.
Using an AEC
Historically, the DVSA would pay a visit to check on the processes and standards of a VTS. Through the launch of the new risk rating system however, they have effectively put the onus on MOT testers and VTS owners to manage their own RAG ratings, identifying and overcoming any issues.
While this has left VTS owners and MOT testers continually self-checking themselves to ensure they remain compliant – it is also time-consuming, particularly as there as so many factors involved.
As a result, when the DVSA launched the new MOT risk rating system, the use of 3rd parties such as an AEC to help ensure compliance was actively encouraged. The AEC works with a VTS to deliver audits and help them ensure that they are totally compliant.
AECs have the experience to interpret the dashboard data to help a VTS move from a red or amber rating to a green. And they also work with testing stations with a green rating to ensure that high standards are continually maintained – leaving MOT testers to get on with their job.
Vehicle Testing Stations and MOT testers have undoubtedly seen a number of changes within the automotive industry over recent years. There has been a huge amount of new technologies and regulations being introduced and an MOT tester needs to stay on top of these through regular training.
In addition to its AEC function, Autotech Training, which is the dedicated training division of Autotech Recruit, delivers a range of training courses, along with MOT Manager Training and IMI approved MOT annual training and assessment for all MOT testers.
Autotech Training has also teamed up with leading industry experts to deliver an audit service to ensure a VTS is fully compliant through its VTS Site Evaluation. A full site assessment is carried out, in line with current DVSA standards, and an in-depth report is produced helping a VTS identify areas of strength and improvements with guidance for future monitoring.
For further information on Autotech Training visit https://autotechtraining.co.uk