Monday, 18 April 2011 16:33

State Farm Parts-Ordering Video

State Farm says in the coming months it will develop a new electronic parts ordering system for its Select Service shops. The new parts ordering plan was rolled out to the DRP shops through an online video.  In the video, claims consultant Gregg McDonald outlines State Farm's plans, stating that the company will work with repairers, parts suppliers and technology vendors to develop a new electronic ordering solution.

To view the video please CLICK HERE.

McDonald said the insurer will work with all segments of the industry to develop a system to "reduce the amount of time and effort needed to search for, source and order all part types," and "to give suppliers a better view of the process, and access to complete parts orders." McDonald also said that the system will include a review tool to allow shops and vendors to provide feedback on the parts ordering experience, saying "Supplier choice and decisions regarding which parts are best suited for the individual repair will remain in your hands."

In 2009, State Farm halted an electronic parts ordering test it had rolled out in California and Indiana, saying it had no plans to implement such a program nationally, but that it had found that electronic parts ordering "has value". The Select Service agreement that participating shops must sign gives the insurer the right to require electronic parts ordering.

As of yet there is no firm start date for the test, and George Avery, State Farm claims consultant, confirmed that the company has yet to work out details about which Select Service shops will participate or what kind of technology will be used.

"We don't have a timeline and we don't know where we're going to test it," Avery said. "Our intent is to give the repairer the choice of the type of parts they want to use. We'll thoroughly test this solution before we roll it out to our shops, like we do all of our projects."

The goal is to improve the efficiency and accuracy of the parts ordering process to minimize returns and potentially increase the speed of repairs. State Farm could potentially benefit through reductions in rental costs and overall repair costs by eliminating supplements and returns.

The first program, which was centered on an OE discounting program, ran from 2007 to 2009. "This is just the next step in the process," Avery said. "We're taking what we learned and applying that to improve efficiency, get the right parts and possibly fix the car quicker."

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