Members of the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance Information Technology Committee met at the Plaza Marriott in San Antonio for three days to collaborate on plans to maintain the group’s position as the industry’s technology leader. The event was held in conjunction with the Alliance’s Sales and Marketing Forum, focused on defining mid- and long-term technology goals while collaborating with Marketing to achieve improved business results.
“The session featured a vibrant and substantive exchange of ideas about where the industry is headed with respect to the continued expansion and importance of technology,” said Rick Spugnardi, chief information officer and vice president of digital business at Replacement Parts Inc., as well as chairman of the Alliance’s Information Technology Committee. “We especially tried to focus on the disruptive technologies that will clearly reorder how the industry must react.”
Commenting on the timing of the meeting, Alliance President and CEO John R. Washbish said, “Increasingly, the lines between marketing and IT are blurring. Very little of what we do at the Alliance from a marketing perspective does not involve technology and vice versa.”
He went on to report that a special joint session between the IT and Sales & Marketing committees enable the groups to better define and plot the Alliance’s web and online selling strategies. “Being able to have our thought leaders from both disciplines only benefits the Alliance in the long-term,” said Washbish.
The IT Strategic Planning session started with an evaluation of a detailed survey conducted prior to the meeting where participants shared their perspectives on the state of aftermarket technology and megatrends that will affect doing business in the years ahead.