Case Study – DB Auto Consultancy Ltd

TecAlliance’s TecDoc VIN Catalogue – Truck – a new standard in CV replacement parts identification

Although Dave Burgess is a relative newcomer to the commercial vehicle (CV) sector, he has a wealth of automotive experience, having been in the trade for more than 30 years and his company, DB Auto Consultancy Ltd, is an active member of the United Aftermarket Network (UAN) trading group.

During this period, one of the tools on which his company has come to rely is the TecDoc Catalogue from TecAlliance, which is considered by many, and Dave is among them, to be the world’s leading replacement parts catalogue. It includes more than 110,000 vehicle models, data for 6.6 million articles (products) from 700-plus brands, 254 million links and 48 product groups, to provide high quality replacement parts information and data for the independent aftermarket.

“The biggest single benefit that the TecDoc Catalogue has brought my business, is to reduce our part returns to virtually zero,” explains Burgess, “which has naturally made a huge difference to our overall efficiencies, as well as directly to the bottom line.

“As all wholesalers will be very aware, part returns and the problems they create, as well as the costs they subject a business to, are some of the fundamental issues when it comes to profitability, particularly in an industry as fiercely competitive as ours and with such small profit margins.

“The specific nature of the search criteria, combined with the accuracy of the data in the TecDoc Catalogue , allows us to precisely identify the correct replacement item, which means, for example, that we don’t have to supply more than one part reference to cover the possible options. Having established the gains that the system has made possible, I now simply couldn’t run my business without the TecDoc Catalogue .”

This ongoing experience and the requirement to ensure they maintain their reputation for supplying the correct parts, first time, meant that the use of the TecDoc Catalogue was a beyond all question when Dave opened the doors of his new CV-focused venture, some 18 months ago.

“I literally didn’t give a moment’s thought to not using TecDoc data for the CV business and therefore, initially used the existing platform that we’d adopted so successfully for the automotive business. However, although the system listed the relevant service, repair and accident related replacement parts the business relies on, it was not quite so easy to navigate for CV searches, due to the fact that the historic links to the reference information associated with CVs, were not quite as refined as they are for the automotive data.”

Recognising this point and intent on making the parts data held within the system equally accessible to CV specialists as it is for the automotive community, the TecAlliance team embarked on a special CV version of the catalogue, and during the final testing phase, Dave was invited to pilot the new TecDoc VIN Catalogue – Truck to provide feedback and actively contribute to its ongoing development.

“Although the new system uses the vehicle’s chassis number to identify the vehicle as well as to some extent still the registration number, the TecDoc VIN Catalogue for Trucks is now equally easy to use and reliable, as this method still identifies the precise vehicle and the associated OE part numbers for its various components,” Burgess continues. “From this information, TecDoc’s official data suppliers match their products, which allows us, as a catalogue user, to choose the ideal replacement part for our customers, from a broad range of suppliers.

“From their perspective, the benefits are two-fold: first, just as part returns are the thing that we as a wholesaler want to minimise, vehicle downtime is the biggest threat to our customers’ profitability, because a stranded vehicle simply becomes a cost. So, being able to quickly identify the correct part from a choice of suppliers, allows us to source the replacement in the shortest timeframe and reduce the period the vehicle is out of service.

“The second, although not directly visible to the customer, is the ability, through TecAlliance’s order-to-invoice processing platform Order Manager, to interrogate the stock level at each supplier, which ensures that we can find a replacement that is available from stock and deliver it to the customer as quickly and efficiently as is possible, which again minimises both inconvenience and cost, and allows us to provide a first class service to our customers.”

For more information concerning the TecDoc VIN Catalogue – Truck, or about TecAlliance in general, please contact Jason Meade on: 01268 572009 or email: Jason.meade@tecalliance.net