Parts supply problem arises at BMW and customers are waiting for repairs

Article by Anita Panait, on August 25, 2013

BMW’s new supply-management system has rendered the carmaker struggling to deliver spare parts on time. Manfred Grunert, a spokesman for BMW, remarked that around 10 percent of the parts are not immediately available in the central warehouse in Dingolfing, Germany, due to the switch to the new system. To shorten the time that customers has to wait for repairs, BMW has workers on extra shifts.

The German carmaker is aiming to have the new supply-management system working properly by early next months. The delays started over two months ago with the switch to the new logistics system. The delays also affected other operations around the world since orders for BMW's 40 parts-distribution centers begin at the Dingolfing facility, which also directly supplies around 300 repair shops in Germany.

Burkhard Weller, owner of Osnabrueck-based Weller Gruppe, told Bloomberg that that delays affects around 180 customers per month, or 20 percent of their customers with major repair work. He noted that “it is impossible to appease a customer who can't use his car."

Stefan Bratzel, director of the Center of Automotive Management at the University of Applied Sciences in Bergisch Gladbach, Germany, remarked to Bloomberg that the current problems on the spare parts supply might smudge BMW’s premium reputation. According to state-funded think tank Institute for Automobile Industry, the after-sales business is important for carmakers since accounts substantially to their profitability; links customers to their brand; and has a high influence on customer satisfaction. [source: BusinessWeek]

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