GM’s aftermarket prepares for the future of electric vehicles
The Davison Road Processing Center here, about 8 miles from GM’s heavy-duty pickup plant and about 75 miles from its headquarters in Detroit, opened in 2019 when GM consolidated another parts plant in Burton with a plant located in West Chester, Ohio.
The 1.1 million square foot facility operates on two shifts of nearly 1,500 workers and ships 576,000 parts each day. The factory operates with inventory worth $44 million – such as door handles, mufflers and steering wheels – and ships to 218 customers in 95 countries.
“Electric vehicles are actually in addition to the internal combustion engine vehicles that we support today,” Roth said. “Here is our opportunity to be agile. [How do EVs] become complementary to what we already do as part of the core business today? It’s the state of mind.”
GM’s three fulfillment centers ship parts to 88 warehouses around the world. In each of the past two years, the Customer Care and Aftersales division has experienced double-digit growth in business.
“We’re on another glide path to see double-digit growth again this year. Consumers are driving again, miles driven are up,” Roth said. “We’re able to fill orders that others can’t. So we’re seeing more and more consumers coming to us because we have the product they need, and we can give them the experience they need. ‘they wait impatiently.’
Roth became GM’s vice president of customer service and aftersales in 2020, replacing GM veteran Tim Turvey. Roth had served as president and general manager of the automaker’s operations in Africa and the Middle East, and prior to that held senior positions in Canada, sales and aftersales during his three decades at GM. .
In the spring of 2020, many dealerships had to halt sales or adjust their strategies as the coronavirus spread. But the demand for repair quickly increased. GM established command centers to determine what parts were needed, where and when.
Customer and Field Service also has a sales and marketing team for Genuine GM Parts and ACDelco Parts, and helps train field dealers in technical skills and customer service.
“A lot of people look at the aftermarket, and they think it’s just parts,” Roth said. “There’s so much more than that. It’s just as complex as running a region.”