Thinking about becoming a Parts Manager or looking to identify a good hire for the position? This one’s for you. While everyone has a unique way of approaching the job, there are a few common traits that are the markers of someone who will thrive in the Parts Manager role. After helping dealerships and Parts Managers elevate their parts operations for over 20 years, we’ve had quite a ton of experience seeing what works and what doesn’t in the industry. Here’s the top four traits that translate to great Parts Managers.
A proactive approach
Let’s face it- sometimes managing parts departments and parts can be unpredictable, messy, and sometimes just downright stressful. It can be so easy to get caught in the cycle of reactivity. Operating on an emergency basis and with little regard to the big picture. But in parts inventory management, it takes making a plan for the unplanned to get out of that reactive zone and into a proactive one. Individuals who can step back from the noise and think about their departments and inventories holistically have the ability to get back into the driver seat and actually grow and improve the department, rather than just getting stuck in the current. Often, stepping back means recognizing the bigger needs of the department and focusing on addressing those as opposed to just putting out the fires they create.
Parts Managers are in the unique position of needing to communicate well with both their employees and management or ownership. Great communication means being able to hear the real needs of the department and honestly and unbiasedly reporting them to higher ups. In a lot of cases, this means advocating for more support and tools, like PartsEdge. We find most Parts Managers know exactly what needs to happen in their departments, but they simply do not have enough time to execute that vision.
Managers who have a plan do better on customer satisfaction, inventory capital management, and overall department growth- it’s as simple as that. Without a map, it’s difficult to get to your destination. We’ve seen time and time again managers getting sucked into the demands of the everyday operations and losing sight of the potential in their departments. It’s not only demoralizing for them, but costly for the operation as a whole. Luckily, this trait can be developed as long as Parts Managers are given the time and support they need to shift to a goal-driven strategy.
It’s difficult to be proactive, communicate needs, and be goal oriented if you don’t know the raw data of what is happening in your department. Excellent Parts Managers love data and make it a priority to have a clear understanding of what is happening in their inventories at all times. We’ve seen time and time again Parts Managers struggle to get the data they need due to clunky and constantly changing DMS systems.
We make getting clear data on your department easy with custom and timely reporting on all parts of your operation. Designed by a Parts Manager and a DMS specialist who saw the gap between the demands on Parts Managers’ and the lack of resources to get everything done, PartsEdge takes all the guesswork out of DMS management and sourcing setup and optimization and, as a result, our clients see on average a 20% drop in total inventory, 15% less idle inventory, a 50% increase in ROI, and a 20% increase in parts sales. That means more of the inventory you really need and less of that you don’t. We’ve been helping Parts Managers make their inventories work better for over 20 years and our testimonials speak for themselves. Want to learn more about how PartsEdge helps Parts Managers and their teams? Send us a message.