5 Questions Every Service Parts Planner Should Ask
Written By: Dave Robbins
Service Parts Planner

Part 2: Do You Need a Service Parts Management Solution?

In part one of our series, we looked at what every VP needs to ask to determine whether their organization needs a Service Parts Management Solution. VPs often consult the people (like you) most impacted by their decisions and new technologies. A service parts planner will have more detailed questions, and should be satisfied that the solution will meet their needs as well as the needs of upper management.

In this post, we’ll look at what questions a service parts planner needs to ask before signing off on a new solution.

Question No. 1: What are the limits of your current service parts process and systems?
The fact that this is being asked is the first step on getting on board. The key here though is, you might not know if you have limitations if you’re not cataloging, know what parts are coming back to the shop, or what your technicians need in the field. (Hint: A solid Service Parts Management Solution will tell you this.)

Question No. 2: How accurate is your parts forecast?
Again, if you’re manually analyzing information on parts coming in and going out, it’s still possible to forecast, but with better data (some of it in real-time), you can nail it each time.

Question No. 3: Are you meeting planned SLAs?
At the end of the day it’s keeping parts and products flowing and customers happy, right? A solid solution ensures that you’re automatically balancing inventory based on service demand or from a parts perspective.

Question No. 4: Are you carrying excess or obsolete stock?
There’s nothing worse (OK, maybe a toothache) than having too much stock or unknowingly carrying obsolete stock. A Service Parts Management Solution ensures that you won’t carry excess stock but also ensures you have the right parts when your customers need it.

Question No. 5: Do you have challenges with supplier lead time reliability?
If you’ve made it this far in asking yourself questions, you’re probably having challenges. You need to be tied in to your suppliers (and vice versa) so they can fill parts in the field for you and manage your service demand.

These five questions should help you at least start to think about whether a Service Parts Management Solution would be helpful. You’re the keeper of parts and are an important link between the c-suite and those in the field on the front lines and could benefit the most.

Read Part 1: Five questions every service vice president should ask

Read Part 3: Five questions that every field service worker should ask

Download the full infographic to see all the questions your organization should ask!

Service Parts Management Checklist

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Tags: CAD Service Lifecycle Management (SLM)
About the Author Dave Robbins

A proud former United States Marine, Dave Robbins has 28 years of experience in the Aerospace & Defense and Commercial Aviation industry. He has held strategy, sales, and operations leadership positions at IBM, Servigistics, and PTC, providing consultation on implementing COTS software such as ERP, IoT, supply chain planning, MRO, CRM, and service supply chains solutions. At PTC, he has led development of the company’s service supply chain, High Velocity Maintenance COTS solution, which consists of SPM, IoT, MRO, PLM, AR/VR, and S&PI. He also spearheaded a global deployment of the United States Air Force’s cloud-based enterprise service parts management solution.