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ITS Logistics


High level service in OEM parts supply chain with Mercedes-Benz

With almost 400 certified dealerships in the United States and a true dedication to safety, innovation, and design, Mercedes-Benz is the world’s best-selling premium luxury car manufacturer. Mercedes-Benz sold more than 2.3 million cars worldwide in 2019 alone. With so many luxury cars and dealerships across the United States, you can imagine the many challenges they face when it comes to original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts distribution.

In order to keep up with this high-volume production and distribution network while maintaining the legendary level of service the brand is known for—Mercedes-Benz needs reliable partners who can make things happen behind the scenes.

The Mercedes-Benz USA Challenge

Mercedes-Benz USA needed an asset-based carrier that could offer exemplary, dedicated delivery service (DDS) for a complete West Coast OEM parts distribution solution. Simply put, they were looking for a truly creative logistics solution that included best-in-class service, a higher level of on-time performance, and proactive communication, all at a competitive rate.

The ITS Logistics Solution

ITS was able to offer an extensive and efficient network to facilitate a complete West Coast DDS solution from the Mercedes-Benz USA Parts Distribution Center in Southern California to all of their dealerships in California, Nevada, Arizona, Washington, and Oregon. The ITS solution utilizes a complete DDS network and drivers dedicated to the account and provides more than 19,000 secure, dark deliveries annually.

These DDS deliveries are made nightly and consist of cages, palletized boxes, and individual parts, with daily and weekly returns delivered according to the customer’s schedule. At ITS, the customer’s needs are prioritized, and the engineers, route planners, terminal managers, and professional company drivers place a huge importance on finding the most effective and efficient routes possible—and pro-actively communicate whenever a disruption in service may occur.

The most challenging part of the network was in the Pacific Northwest, where ITS created and implemented a solution that had never been done before. This includes routes from the Mercedes-Benz USA distribution center in Southern California through Northern California, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington, with a complex but efficient network of driver team relays, meet and turns, and repowers, culminating in final delivery to the PNW dealerships.

The Technology

Because of this intricate and complex supply chain network and the added challenge of secure dark deliveries into dealerships, it can be difficult to know exactly where each part is at all times. In order to improve this process, ITS planned, developed, and implemented a custom tracking application called iTrax. This app constantly uploads the details of a specific load to an Azure cloud-based server, and as parts are loaded, delivered or returned, they are scanned, and the information is updated in real-time, allowing for complete visibility.

A Higher Tier of Service

ITS team members are committed to providing a high level of service as they perform these secure, dark, unattended deliveries of parts each night to a variety of dealerships across the West Coast. Each dealership has its own specific delivery entry point, some more challenging than others, and all ITS drivers are professional, safety conscious, and self-sufficient with the ability and skills to maneuver the tractors and trailers within the confined spaces found at the various metropolitan dealership locations. It’s not for the faint of heart!

The drivers and managers understand the uniqueness of this industry and the significance of these deliveries, taking extra steps to ensure an excellent customer experience. We know that issues may arise and have developed detailed SOPs and notification escalation processes which help to proactively communicate any situations with Mercedes-Benz USA. Communication is key to this successful relationship. In addition to communication, ITS understands how critical it is for these dealerships to have parts on hand when needed to support their customers. For more than 19,000 deliveries in 2018, the on-time delivery percentage was over 99 percent.

ITS is proud to be ranked as one of the Top Five DDS Providers in Customer Satisfaction in the United States and Canada by the largest North American OEM parts manager annual survey—and for the first time, Mercedes-Benz USA is ranked #1 in DDS Networks! This high level of service would not be possible without our great network of employees, proactive communication, a culture of continuous improvement, and a true partnership with Mercedes-Benz USA.

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