„The good news is, your spare part is available. The bad news … it’s halfway around the world. But we’ll overnight it so you can get things back up and running tomorrow.“
Have you ever had to say that to a customer before? It happens daily to companies across the globe. Countless service technicians, their trucks full of spare parts, are sent out to deal with emergencies every day, only to discover the part they need is not on board.
Of course, you can’t foresee every emergency when planning the vehicle stock for each of your field service technicians, but there are ways to optimize.
As always, the devil is in the details. Depending on your business model, it is important to understand when spare parts need to be deployed downstream to the customer. Should it be delivered by the technician? Or shipped separately to the customer? Are there certain standard parts that should always be kept stocked in the technicians’ vehicles? Do trunk stocks vary according to region and customer? Who makes stocking and replenishment decisions? Do you need regional warehouse hubs or one central stock as a backbone? What is the logic behind these decisions from a business point of view?
Optimizing even these small elements of your supply chain process can make a big difference: in quality of service, operational costs, inventories, machine downtime and, last but not least, in customer satisfaction.
In today’s world of highly-efficient production and service processes, machines, appliances or tools that are out of operation are unacceptable to any business operation – whether it is a steel press in a production hall, a hospital bed in a clinic, an elevator in an office building or even a washing machine in a private home. You have to make sure that interruptions are kept to an absolute minimum and costs associated with quality maintenance or service are reasonable.
Solid planning of trunk and central stocks – taking into account the possibility of parts’ failure, value of relevant spare parts and special information on regional allocation of the machines or appliances that need to be serviced – will lead to remarkable results.
It is even possible to reduce scrapped spare parts by better planning EOL procedures.
So don’t settle for “quenching the blaze”, don’t let last-minute options become common practice if there are more efficient solutions. There’s a good chance you can further optimize trunk stocks, minimize machine downtimes and lower your overall value chain stock costs. Be smart, get a professional partner who can support you all the way from concept to implementation. Talk to us, that’s what we’re expert at.