RV PRO

July '18

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158 • RV PRO • July 2018 rv-pro.com B U S I N E S S operations, most of my suggestions can be applied to your entire business. So, if you are willing to accept that some – OK most – of the suggestions provided in this column will require some effort, then please continue reading. Otherwise, do what you have always done and continue to obtain the same results. Where to Start? Within each parts department, there are processes that are repeated daily, weekly, monthly, or at other specific cycles. By documenting these processes, it is possible to improve these processes and to provide enhanced customer ser- vice. For those of you who read my columns, you might recall my term for these documented procedures, which is detailed written procedures (DWP). Some procedures within your parts operation might be performed by specific individuals. However, these people might occasionally be absent due to illnesses, scheduled time off, or other reasons. During these absences, other staff – per- haps even you – would be required to perform these procedures. With a DWP for each of these procedures, it is much easier for other personnel to efficiently process the procedures without error and in a consistent manner. However, you might ask how a DWP can improve the processes and provide enhanced customer service. Consider this example: • During my career as a parts manager, I believed that the receiving procedure was the most important recurring pro- cess within my parts operations because it is the gateway for goods entering the inventory. If a DWP exists for each of the several func- tions within the overall receiving process, then the opportunity for error is minimized, if not alto- gether eliminated because: • Items on backorder from the sup- plier can be identified and alter- nate sources could be contacted, which enhances customer service, especially if one of those items is a special order.** • Special order items, whether for internal department use or resulting from an external cus- tomer purchase, can be prop- erly flagged and the customer promptly notified. • Stock items can be sorted for dis- persal and placement in their des- ignated locations. • Order shipment discrepancies can be identified and the appropriate request for adjustments by the sup- plier(s) can be promptly initiated.** • Superseded links could be realized, and the appropriate actions taken to update the database so that parts associates have current item application information available to provide the correct, current item(s) to the customers.** **Each of these functions might require a separate DWP so that the primary receiving procedure DWP is not too complex. Within this example of one primary recurring process, you can see that there are many opportunities to improve the proce- dure and to enhance customer service. This is only one of the many processes related to the parts operations. And, if you include each department within your RV business, then your list of necessary detailed written procedures will expand. When I suggest that DWP be devel- oped, some of my clients respond with "but that takes time". Yes, it does require extra time and effort to develop a DWP. However, the return on that initial time investment is substantial and is replicated each time the procedure is performed. As a manager, it is not necessary for you to develop each detailed written pro- cedure. Given that most of the processes within the department involve the parts associates, I suggest that you delegate the development of some of the DWP to the parts associates. If you accept that continuous process improvement and the development of detailed written procedures are worth con- Within each parts department, there are processes that are repeated daily, weekly, monthly, or at other specific cycles. By documenting these processes, it is possible to improve these processes and to provide enhanced customer service. " "

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