Why do you need a tool for spare parts?

Providing spare parts demands quite some attention because the expectations are high. The way your customers and distributors are experiencing your aftersales services has become increasingly important and sending or replacing the wrong spare parts could severely hurt your reputation. Offering spare parts for configurable products is a real challenge, and needs more than just a product catalog:

  • There can be a vast number of spare parts available
  • The parts need to match with the configured product
  • The parts can look alike, but have completely different functionalities or matching products
  • Spare parts evolve in time, the same way that products do
  • Some spare parts might no longer be available and can only be replaced by a more recent version, which might implicate other parts need replacing too
  • Pricing for spare parts can be very complex
  • Some spare parts are configurable on their own

Hive’s spare parts system

We know that selling spare parts is easier said than done. Based on years of experience and trial and error, we have developed our unique spare parts system in Hive. There are 3 implementation steps to take your service to a whole new level!

1. A (fairly) basic spare parts system

In this first level Hive will provide a basic spare parts module for your distributors and the customer service team. This segment resembles a web shop, but contains some unique and powerful features to improve the experience:

  • Filters and search functions allow users to browse through spare part catalogs
  • The available spare parts and their respective prices can be different per distributor or region
  • All product information for the parts can be added (files, videos, stock level…)
  • Spare parts can be configurable; dimensions, colors and other properties can be modified and immediately validated
  • Spare parts can be organized into projects
  • A project of parts can be printed as a quote and ordered on the platform
  • HiveCPQ is user-friendly and available on desktop, mobile or tablets to ensure the access for technicians or installers on the road
This first implementation immediately makes it easier and more efficient for manufacturers to provide spare parts. It forms a solid foundation for the second and third step.

2. Add exploded views and bill of materials

The second step of our spare parts module focuses on visualization and documentation by adding exploded views and bill of materials. Exploded views of each product:

  • Allows users to identify parts within seconds
  • Serves as an incredibly visual, and therefore stimulating, way to find products
  • Functions as an extra layer of confirmation for users to pick the correct spare part

Bill Of Materials (BOM):

  • Classifies all parts of a bigger spare part in a clear overview, e.g., all parts of a motor
  • Allows users to easily find the part they are looking for in the list
  • Gives users an idea of what assemblies the spare part is being used in and therefore validates the order

One of our customers in the door manufacturing industry, Dynaco, operating from the U.S. and Europe, has implemented exploded views. See how it works for them:

Another customer of ours, Royal De Boer in the Netherlands, has chosen to implement our spare parts module up until step two. Their distributor network has benefited greatly from these features. They were transitioning from a legacy, custom-built module on top of SAP to this next generation spare parts system:

By adding exploded views and BOMs HiveCPQ makes it easier for users to find and select the right spare parts, giving them insights into the composition and assembly of products and the modularity. What else can you improve? On to step 3!

3. Validation based on product history

The third step adds an additional level of service. The spare parts module will be transformed into an enormous product configurator. This product configurator checks if a spare part fits the product that was configured and produced in the past. HiveCPQ adds a unique product serial number to every configured product in the software, similar to the tag number of each produced car.

  • Entering the serial number into the search bar in HiveCPQ will automatically load the product’s entire spare parts catalog.
  • The spare parts that do not fit the given product will disappear from the selection.
  • Optionally, users can still see the parts that are not matching.
See how it works:

Selling spare parts: before & after

Before

  • An enormous backlog of spare parts quote requests
  • Checking which spare parts fit a configured product is a labor-intensive process
  • Overworked back-office employees
  • An error-prone way of working

When using Hive’s spare parts module:

  • Always sending the correct spare part, guaranteeing to decrease the number of errors
  • Improved customer service, increasing customer satisfaction
  • Decrease of the back-office workload
  • Increase in revenue due to additional spare parts sales

Want to see our module in action? Request a spare parts system demo now!

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