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What Do Fleets Need from the Independent Service Channel?

Learn what fleets need from the independent service channel in 2022 and beyond.

Episode 172: We are at the Technology and Maintenance Council Annual Meeting in beautiful Orlando, Florida. The theme of the show is Electrifying Performance in Maintenance Management. In this episode we talk about what fleets need from the independent service channel in 2022, and into the future, and how electrification is going to impact the trucking industry.

My guest today is Clint Carter from HDA Truck Pride.  

Clint Carter Headshot, and HDA Truck Pride logo. In this episode, learn what fleets need from the independent service channel in 2022 and beyond.

Guest Website: HeavyDutyPartsReport.com/BuyParts

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Disclaimer: This content and description may contain affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, The Heavy-Duty Parts Report may receive a small commission.

Sponsors of this Episode:

  1. Want to look up parts but don’t have a part number or the VIN? Download Diesel Parts for free on Desktop or on your Apple or Android device.
  2. Looking for high-quality fuel injection for heavy-duty applications? Visit AMBACInternational.com/Aftermarket

Buy Parts:

Are you looking to purchase heavy-duty parts and get your commercial vehicle repaired? Get access to one of HDA Truck Pride’s 750 locations across the United States and Canada. Visit HeavyDutyPartsReport.com/BuyParts.

Transcript of Episode:

Jamie Irvine:

You are listening to The Heavy-Duty Parts Report. I’m your host, Jamie Irvine. And this is the show where you get expert advice about heavy-duty parts that keeps trucks and trailers on the road longer while lowering cost-per -mile. We’re at the Technology and Maintenance Council Annual Meeting in beautiful Orlando, Florida. The theme of the show is electrifying performance in maintenance management. And my guest today is Clint Carter from HDA Truck Pride. Clint, welcome to The Heavy-Duty Parts Report.

Clint Carter:

Well, thanks Jamie. Thanks for having me on I’m looking forward to it.

Jamie Irvine:

So when we think of HDA Truck Pride members, we think of the products and services that they provide, they’re part of the independent service channel. They’re working with fleets. What do fleets need from the independent service channel in 2022?

Clint Carter:

Well, the fleets need so many things from the independent service channel, but really what they want is more. They need more of the great service and maintenance and preventive maintenance programs they’ve enjoyed for years from the independent service channel, but they also need more in the ways of capacity and capabilities. As we look at the dealer network and how they’ve gotten bogged down in the last group of years on turnaround times, going from hours to days to weeks, the independent service channel has been a real resource for fleets to go to, to get their vehicles back up on the road and back producing revenue and keeping their drivers happy.

So there’s more work that’s gonna flow to the independent, a service channel from a capacity standpoint, but they’re also looking at the independent service channel to increase their capabilities, to be able to provide more and more in-depth repairs on these technologically-driven vehicles. And lastly, I think they’re looking for a lot more communication and it’s not the phone call or the quick simple email that we sent years ago. It’s real-time direct communication. You drop a vehicle off Tuesday, there’s a portal to go log in. It was promised to you Friday morning, Thursday afternoon. You can check and see if it’s in the bay. If it’s on schedule, if there’s been a delay, you got an email about it. You get the ability to respond and redirect or provide feedback on what you want your service provider to do. I think that next level of communication is what the fleets are really looking for in 2022.

Jamie Irvine:

Yeah, I would agree with you completely. And one of the things that I know is utilization is a word that has been used at a lot of the taskforce meetings here. It’s something that fleets are concerned with. How is the independent service channel going to help fleets with utilization as we move forward? You know, the rest of 2022 and beyond?

Clint Carter:

Well, I think the independent service channel has a big advantage of over the dealer network when it comes to maximizing uptime and utilization. Utilization is at all time highs right now, the OEMs cannot build enough equipment. So every piece of equipment is being put into service and generating revenue. So the dealer network, while they do certain things really well has a very standard process they go through. The independent service network is completely full of entrepreneurs. These unique minded individuals who don’t take no for an answer, if that compressor’s not available on the standard path, that’s fine. They’ll go to a non-standard path. If the first two path they took to acquire that part is a challenge, they’ll go a different way. So as part shortages really became part of our lives in 2021, unfortunately, they’re gonna continue in 2022, the independent entrepreneur in this channel does a much better job of smoothing out those bumps for the fleets and maximizing the utilization and the uptime for the fleet.

Jamie Irvine:

Absolutely. And the independent service channel needs to remain healthy as we move forward, because it’s such a big part of keeping the trucking industry going. We’re gonna take a quick break. We’ll be right back. Don’t have a heavy-duty part number and need to look up a part? Go to parts.diesellaptops.com or download the app on Apple or Android to create your free account. Looking for high quality fuel injection for heavy-duty applications? Having one supplier for fuel injection allows you to better serve customers by provide them with a complete line, which increases your sales and profitability. Learn more at ambacinternational.com/aftermarket. So before the break, we were talking about the invaluable role, the independent service channel plays in making sure that the trucking industry remains healthy and vibrant. And I wanted to continue that conversation. You know, we’re at TMC’s Annual Meeting, the theme is about electrification of the trucking industry. How is electrification going to impact maintenance management in the future on the independent service channel?

Clint Carter:

I think it’s a great question. The meeting theme is appropriate and I think to know exactly how it’s gonna impact us, only time will tell, but electrification is coming. Alternate fuel vehicles are coming. So when we look at the maintenance of the, you know, service provided by the independent channel, there’s gonna be tons of opportunity. There’s gonna be tons of evolution and the type of parts that are needed, the type of repairs that are needed to be made, the diagnostic tools and technicians that are gonna need to be implemented on a day to day basis. So what we see today from a nuts and bolts functionality of the independent service channel is gonna evolve greatly as these vehicles come into the fold. I think the good news for us is that people are fully engaged in it.

Nobody’s sitting behind a curtain saying it’s never gonna happen to us. We’re diesel guys. I think the theme is addressing it and bringing to the forefront, the opportunity to discuss it and explore, but I’ve think we’re gonna see a transformation and it’s gonna happen over a period of time. And we’re gonna get the opportunity to learn from the automotive side a little bit as we have in the past, because they’re there today. You know, Ford splitting into two companies, GM looking at 30 new vehicle platforms in the next five years they’re committed. We’re gonna get there. We’re a little bit behind them, but we’re evolving there and maintenance going to move into a whole different arena than where we are today. And the independent service channel thankfully, is totally engaged with it. And they’re looking forward to the challenges and opportunities electrification presents.

Jamie Irvine:

Well, we’re looking forward to seeing how HDA Truck Pride’s over 150 members really rise to the challenge of some of the things that are going to happen over the next few years as our industry changes. Okay, we’ve got the business out of the way, what’s been one of the highlights of the show? I mean, we’re in beautiful Orlando, Florida. We’re at TMC. The trucking industry has come out to support this show. I think we’re all happy to be here. What’s been the highlight of the show for you so far?

Clint Carter:

I think it would be the two piece – people and the passion. Wherever you are in our industry there’s people from every part of that industry. And almost everyone here has a singular passion for our business. And whether it’s people who are sitting with internal combustion engines, looking at the electrification challenge or people that are looking on bolt on accessories, there’s so much here and we’re not back to full attendance, but there’s a lot of healthy people here and we’re sharing a lot of great ideas.

Jamie Irvine:

Yeah. It’s been absolutely wonderful. Those who follow the show regularly know I’m from Northern Canada. So they finally let me out. I got to be able to come down and see everyone who’s been great. Why should someone who’s listening right now seriously consider becoming a TMC member?

Clint Carter:

If you’re listening to The Heavy-Duty Parts Report, you’re some way connected to the commercial vehicle market. And if you’re connected to the commercial vehicle market, there’s really no better resource than TMC. And it doesn’t matter what part of the market you’re engaged in. Right? You mentioned we have 150 different members. We’ve got members that do nothing but distribute parts, but 55% of our members are involved in service. We also have a separate sub-net of our truck service experts, 400 plus independent repair shops that subscribe to our services to help them evolve and grow in the business. Whether you’re from that group, whether you’re from the fleet side, whether you’re from a supplier component side, there’s something to get from being here at TMC. And that’s why subscribing to the TMC process is a huge plus in anybody’s evolution in their career.

Jamie Irvine:

You’ve been listening to The Heavy-Duty Parts Report. I’m your host, Jamie Irvine. We’ve been with Clint Carter from HDA Truck Pride. If you’d like to buy parts and service from HDA Truck Pride, go to heavydutyparts report.com/buyparts, that’ll redirect you to their website. You’ll be able to find one of their conveniently located either part stores or service locations across the US and Canada. Clint, thank you so much for being on The Heavy-Duty Parts Report.

Clint Carter:

Thank you, Jamie. It was a pleasure. Have a great week.

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