• Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
• Industry: Automotive
• Number of Stores: 1
• Employees: 20
“Epicor is second to none in providing the best and latest solutions. With Prism, we're proving we are the best source for our customers.”
Harris Steinberg, Owner | Morris Auto Parts
Morris Auto Parts' company mission is “To service our customers through professional employees who always have the technical and logistical knowledge to get the right product, consistently delivered in the shortest possible time, and to create the highest profit for the customer on each and every job.” By using Epicor Prism to manage the business and identify opportunities for improvement, Morris Auto Parts profitably delivers on its mission and has become a leader in the Philadelphia market.
Success of Eight Independents Influences Five Others
Morris Auto Parts owner, Harris Steinberg, has been working in the family business for as long as he can remember. Today Harris runs the business with a focus on using technology and training to deliver superior customer service. In fact, Morris Auto Parts is one of nine parts suppliers that have obtained the ASE Blue Seal. Harris was named Counterman Magazines' 2006 Counter Professional of the Year.
Morris Auto Parts is a member of POJA Warehouse, a tri-state group of independent auto parts wholesalers who have combined their efforts to increase buying power, expand marketing activities and improve all phases of operations. Innovative technology plays a big part in POJA members' success. Since 2004 a subgroup of eight businesses, called United Jobber Alliance, have successfully shared one Prism system. The remaining five POJA business owners are expected to migrate to the shared Prism system in the next few years.
Sharing Inventory Between Independents Automatically
United Jobber Alliance members share inventory across their respective warehouses. “We each carry parts we know we need and then each of us carries a full line for two to four manufacturers,” explains Harris. “Using inventory balancing, Prism automatically analyzes inventory levels at all locations and shifts overstock and slow moving inventory to the locations that need it.
And when a customer needs a part that we don't stock, Prism indicates which of the other United Jobber Alliance members has that part and all we have to do is a transfer. Inventory sharing frees up tens of thousands of dollars every month and provides all of us with fast access to far more parts than we could carry on our own.”
Bar Coding and RF Scanning Delivers Faster and More Accurate Inventory Morris Auto Parts uses RF guns to scan bar coded products in the warehouse and store. “RF saves us several hours every day and more importantly increases the accuracy of our counts. We now count products that were too onerous to count manually,” says Harris. “We use the time saved with Prism automation to focus on growing the business.”
Increasing Sales at the Counter and Through the Internet
Morris Auto Parts regularly measures and targets areas of improvement in counter activities with Prism's reports. “We see reports on tickets per counterman per hour, elapsed time from order placement to delivery, average ticket value, percentage of phone vs. walk up transactions, and compare actual performance against base level expectations,” describes Harris. “We use this information to train and motivate employees in order to increase productivity and business volume.”
Epicor AConneX is used by about 10% of Morris Auto Parts customers. “Customers appreciate the convenience and we save time at the counter and use that time to help other customers. We also have fewer returns on AConneX orders, which saves even more time,” continues Harris.
Access to Current and Complete Data Gives Outside Salesmen a Competitive Edge
Morris Auto Parts' two outside salesmen have laptops containing daily data on customer sales and order status. “When at customers' sites, our salesmen can look up exactly which parts were ordered when, and at what price,” says Harris. “Our salesmen are better equipped to easily and immediately answer questions, which translates into better customer service and more orders.”
Morris Auto Parts also runs reports that pinpoint sales and customer service opportunities. “We regularly run reports identifying customers that haven't ordered in more than two days. We then call or visit those customers to proactively fix a problem or avert a potential problem. It shows the customers that we are paying attention and that we care,” describes Harris.
Improvements Across the Board Increases Customer Confidence
Morris Auto Parts uses ODBC to link its Prism information with its dispatch and delivery system. “It's powerful to show your customers the exact time it takes to deliver their parts. We've made numerous route changes to speed up our delivery time,” explains Harris. “We know we've increased customer confidence with this information. If a customer perceives that we've been slow, we can show him the data that usually disproves his perception. We also proactively call customers to apologize when we feel that our delivery was too slow. Before they can complain, we've spoken with them.”
“Technology is one of our key elements in providing excellent customer service, and Epicor is second to none in providing the best and the latest solutions. It gives us the best data with the best integrated solutions to keep our customers getting the right parts the first time and in the shortest period of time,” concludes Harris. “The improvements using Prism have been across the board; from counter operations and sales productivity to delivery and inventory management. We're proving we are the best source for our customers and we're leaving many of our competitors in the dust.”
Epicor Software Corporation is a global leader delivering business software solutions to the manufacturing, distribution, retail, and service industries. With more than 40 years of experience, Epicor has more than 20,000 customers in over 150 countries. Epicor solutions enable companies to drive increased efficiency and improve profitability. With a history of innovation, industry expertise, and passion for excellence, Epicor inspires customers to build lasting competitive advantage. Epicor provides the single point of accountability that local, regional, and global businesses demand. For more information, visit www.epicor.com.