To remain competitive in the replacement parts market, factors, garages and bodyshops need to be able to access the latest parts as soon as the demand for them begins. This is clearly why the parts suppliers are so keen to let them know about new-to-range parts as soon as they are added.
However, as Shaun Greasley explains, for those that use Europe’s leading parts information data provider TecDoc, this information and a whole host more besides, is automatically updated and available at their finger tips to help them drive more revenue through the business.
“Every factor will have a number of exceptional garages that need little or no encouragement to specify the best products, undertake the latest training and act proactively to the threat from the franchised dealer. These garages would benefit from the information held within the TecDoc system, but it’s not with these customers that the problems lie.
“On the law of averages, for each exceptional garage customer a factor has, there are likely to be several other garages that frankly need as much help as they can get and for these customers TecDoc can help factors to help them raise their game.
“Although the TecDoc CATALOG electronic parts catalogue is primarily used for parts identification and specification, some may be unaware that it also contains a case file on every vehicle on the system. This case file allows access to a wealth of additional information that can help them, and their garage customers, make the most of each and every opportunity a vehicle in the workshop can yield.
“The following example can be replicated for any product search made by a factor, but let’s take a search for the timing belt kit for a Ford Fiesta Mk V 1.4 TDCi to demonstrate the potential.
“Once the vehicle is selected, the system automatically opens to the ‘Assembly Group’ page to allow the user to select ‘Belt Drive’ then the subgroup ‘Timing Belt/Set’ and then the actual item ‘Timing Belt Set’ to see a list of brands from which the specific kit can be selected.
“However, if the user then selects the ‘Repair Information’ tab, they are able to access several other areas that can help them to provide useful background information or highlight potential problems that would be helpful for the garage that was initially just undertaking a timing belt change to know.
“So under ‘Repair Manuals’ for example, in addition to the fitting instructions for the timing belt kit, there are similar instructions for the removal and installation of the clutch, airbag removal and refitting and key programming instructions.
“Under ‘Repair Specifications’ users can find information as diverse as the minimum thickness of the brake discs or maximum disc run-out, the emission specifications and code, and the torque settings for virtually every component on the vehicle.
“Hit the ‘Lubricants and Fluids’ tab and listed are the correct formulation and quantities for everything from the engine oil to the coolant, not to mention the air conditioning refrigerant and compress oil!
“Finally, the system also features ‘Repair Times’, so that jobs can be priced accurately and ‘Maintenance Services’, to find the correct service interval and schedule should the vehicle be without its service booklet.