The Importance of Adequate Resources
From the outside looking in, managing a parts department seems straight-forward. The reality is that managing a parts department, “the right way”, is a full-time job and fairly complex. There are numerous tasks that must be completed accurately and on-time or the dealership will incur thousands of dollars per month in missed opportunities and additional expenses. It’s worth every penny invested to have a great Parts Manager in place that is fully equipped with adequate resources to manage the department, “the right way”.
ADMI works with thousands of dealerships globally for parts training, ongoing sustainment consulting, and remote parts inventory management, so we see both dealers succeeding and those struggling. Most often the difference of success or failure relates back to how well the Parts Manager is equipped and what resources are available to them – and by equipped and resources, we mean;
- Do they have enough time? There are numerous tasks that a parts manager has to complete that are normally tied to a deadline, cutoff, or expiration date. Any missed deadlines mean extra expense to the dealership and missed opportunity! For example, if you miss an OEM objective by some measurement, that could result in the loss of discounts, rebates, or returns. If you miss a claim deadline, that part you received damaged at no fault of your own is now yours! If you don’t submit the parts order before the cutoff time, the techs and customers will have to wait an extra day or longer for their parts. You see, when a parts manager is busy all day with non-Parts Management tasks, there is often not enough time left to do what a Parts Manager really needs to do. Can a parts manager do multiple things such as also sell parts and help in other areas of the dealership? Yes, possibly. But sufficient time to be a parts manager must be carved out and dedicated each day. The amount of time will vary by dealer and could range from one hour a day or all-day! Could there be more efficient ways for the Parts Manager to perform their duties which frees up time to complete tasks or is additional part-time or full-time help necessary? The lost opportunity, profits, and increased expenses in these areas are hard to track! There is no report that shows the cost of, “oops, I was so busy I forgot to do (fill in the blank)”. If dealers only knew how much money was lost due to missing a detail or deadline, they would be shocked.
- Have they been properly trained? Do they really know what to do every day, every week, every month on-time? Do they know what reports to look at and how often? Do they know “why” they do what they do? Are they experts in their manufactures policies, procedures, terms, and conditions? Are they efficient with the DMS? Many Parts Managers never received any formal training but learned by doing the best they can with what they’ve been given. Yes, one of the best teachers is making mistakes and learning from them but that method is so costly! Plus, it takes years to learn everything that is needed to know when training could bring them to an expert level in a very short period of time. Training improves job satisfaction, efficiency, and productivity. This translates into increased employee morale and customer satisfaction. It decreases stress, anxiety, burnout, costly mistakes and missed opportunities.
- Do they know where and how to get help? Having a friend or resource in the business is extremely helpful. It could be your OEM representative or a resource they provide such as an assistance center. It could be another Parts Manager in the next town over or in a social media group. It could be a consultant – typically a well experienced, proven successful person who has been in their shoes and knows the business inside and out with their best interest in mind. Parts Managers need information and help because the business is not only complex but it’s also changing every day. Being a part of a group or team and not going at it alone is a strong resource to have.
Providing the Parts Manager with the knowledge, time, and resources necessary to succeed is a wise investment that pays huge dividends. ADMI is a proven knowledge base and resource partner that will help you achieve excellence in every area of parts operations. We train and consult parts managers to become efficient in their DMS, OEM policies and procedures, to become inventory management experts, keep the right parts in stock at the right time, stop idle growth, reduce legacy idle capital, and more.
If you would like to discuss the blog article further, feel free to reach out to Jay Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org