Faced with a cramped service department and more parts than ever, Dave Kehl Chevrolet looked for smarter car parts storage.
Dave Kehl Chevrolet is one of the top Chevrolet dealerships in Ohio, in large part because of their great salespeople and customer service. But their great customer service also extends to their parts and repair department – and for good reason. According to the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), service departments are responsible for 60% of a car dealership’s net profits. In fact, when car service expectations are exceeded, the customer’s likelihood to return soars to 73% – a statistic that can be positively, or negatively, influenced by the on-time delivery of service parts according to a study by Accenture.
“We’ve been really happy with the system. It’s unbelievable the difference it’s made.”
– Paul McMahill
Parts and Service Manager
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With that in mind, Dave Kehl’s Parts and Service Manager, Paul McMahill, knew that having organized auto parts storage would be critical to maintaining customer satisfaction – and the auto parts storage in the original service department just wasn’t cutting it. The old facility’s narrow 24” shelving aisles were difficult to access and organize, and the steadily growing number of parts needed for service was putting more stress on the already maxed-out shelving. Every time a mechanic couldn’t find a needed part, it increased service times and decreased the efficiency of the department. McMahill realized they were in dire need of a new car parts storage system, saying of the old parts room, “The bins were too close together, you couldn’t turn around, you couldn’t put parts in there. It was dreary.”
The dealership had previously worked with a local equipment company to install overhead doors and industrial shelving for their building, and on a visit to the company’s offices, McMahill noticed an ActivRAC mobile storage system being used to store filing cabinets. He wondered aloud about adapting ActivRAC for their car parts storage at the dealership. After brainstorming with the equipment company, McMahill settled on an ActivRAC 7M system to house car parts, tools, and hardware in the service department.
By using one bank of static shelving flanked by mobile carriages, they were able to design around an existing column in the facility and utilize much of the existing shelving. McMahill appreciates the ease with which mechanics can now move the shelves and enter the aisles, noting that even his four-year-old grandson is able to slide the shelves using the mechanical assist wheel. The free space created by the creative design allowed for more service space, and Dave Kehl Chevrolet can now store three times the amount of parts in the same amount of space. But most importantly, the service department has increased its efficiency, leading to quicker repair times and exceptional customer service.
“We’ve been really happy with the system,” McMahill commented. “It’s unbelievable the difference it’s made.”
ActivRAC7 has helped dealerships, OEMs, and wholesale auto parts distributors find a balance between keeping high-velocity parts in stock while retaining space for slow-moving parts as well. ActivRAC eliminates aisles in storage spaces by mounting shelving on mobile carriages that hold 7,000-30,000 pounds each. Read more about how we helped another car dealership tackle tire storage in their service department.
“An average consumer car parts retailer has between 60,000-90,000 SKUs in its supply chain”