DOY Finalist: Inland Truck Parts
Today’s aftermarket is a very different one than the one Dave Scheer, president and CEO, Inland Truck Parts Co. competed in when he was named Truck Parts & Service Distributor of the Year in 2002. One thing that hasn’t changed is Scheer’s desire to have Inland Truck Parts always strive to be its best.
Making Information Available
Information is a vital component in the company’s success. Scheer is actively involved in trying to get Right To Repair legislation enacted, but his efforts do not stop there. Recently he assigned a staff member the task of making sure component information was available at the fingertips of all Inland employees.
- “We are consolidating information into one knowledge database so that at the click of a button the user can get the information he needs about any component we sell,” he says.
For example, if a customer calls about a differential, the system will prompt the counterman to ask the customer additional questions about ancillary items he might need such as gaskets, and to give technical information such as required torque specifications.
“We plan to have everything the inside or outside salesperson needs to do a complete job for the customer in our database,” Scheer says.
He adds, “One of the main things we sell is the knowledge we have. When a customer calls us we need to provide knowledge and solutions for his product. We always have done this but now we need to leverage that electronically.”
Laser Focus On Training
Training is so important at Inland Truck Parts that Scheer invested in having a training facility built. It will have six remanufacturing stations and work stands for differentials, manual transmissions and Allison automatic transmissions. There also will be two drive-in service bays and a driveline training areas.
“Technicians are difficult to find and we find them with different skill levels, so to enhance a person and improve his skill set you need to provide training.”
However training does not just focus on improving technical skills. “We have a myriad of other people who are supervisors and managers who need soft skills training. How do you discipline? How do you communicate? How do you resolve conflict? We have provided and will continue soft skills training,” Scheer says.