Last week I had a chance to chat with Jill Marcotte, Partner and Chief Supply Chain Officer of Dealer Tire, LLC. We covered everything from metrics to supply chain excellence across industries to career advice for young professionals. Check it out.

 

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Jill Marcotte was named Partner and Chief Supply Chain Officer with ownership interest for Dealer Tire, LLC in January of 2001 as the company was initially founded. Dealer Tire is exclusively focused on building and supporting the car-dealer channel by making it easy and profitable for automotive dealers and OEMs to sell tires, services, and parts to drive loyalty and retention.  Dealer Tire currently manages 25 OE tire programs across the US and Canada for customers such as BMW, MB, Lexus Toyota and Chrysler.  Jill is known as a goal-oriented team builder with an ability to create a vision and inspire outstanding results.  Jill has directed growth of Dealer Tire’s Logistics function from its original three distribution centers to its current network of 32 in the U.S. and seven in Canada.  She also built Supplier Relations, Transportation, Supply Chain Solutions, and Inventory Management teams to support the company’s dramatic sales growth.


What financial metrics do you track at Dealer Tire?

 

We have many metrics that we track for a variety of purposes.  From an overall financial perspective, key metrics include, but are not limited to: revenue growth, gross margin, operating expenses as a % of sales (warehouse, SG&A), EBITDA margin, DSO, DPO, and inventory turns.


How has this changed since you started with the company?

 

We have always tracked these metrics.  However, at times, the company’s performance or strategic goal(s) may shift the focus towards certain metrics more than others.


What different industries have you worked in and how has your experience differed across those especially in terms of what makes a "good" supply chain?

 

I have been fortunate to have gained experience in a variety of company types, including automotive and confections (consumer/food) with both a wholesale and retail focus.  I have worked in privately held and public companies, large and small companies and fast growing and stable companies.  A “good” supply chain supports the company vision and goals, adapting to meet the needs of the customer and key stakeholders.  What is most important in each situation, with each unique company, is to determine the best way to have the most impact on the company.  In each company, determining that one most important advantage has been key to leveraging the supply chain and it has differed in each company.  Building a supply chain that can flex with the many changes (environmental, economic, customer additions, product offerings, service offerings, geographical expansions, etc.) that companies experience today is important to having a “good” supply chain.  Being future focused, proactive and staying ahead of your competition will minimize lost opportunities.  Executing with excellence and meeting commitments and metrics is fundamental to having a successful supply chain.


Dealer Tire is expanding its B2C business. What has surprised you the most about that experience? Where are you at currently? Is the pilot program expanding?

 

Our first pilot of RightTurn.com was in Dallas, Texas.  We used this pilot to test our concept, the process, the web site and marketing.  Leveraging customer feedback and results, we then made improvements.  We expanded the pilot to include Cleveland, Ohio.  In both cases, we received positive feedback from consumers, validating our goal of an “easy, right, fair” experience – a fairly new concept to tire purchasing.  Our associates have really embraced our expansion from a B2B company to include a B2C presence.  What has surprised me the most is the wide variety of consumers that have purchased from the site, not just our targeted demographic group.  We will definitely be expanding into additional markets in 2015.


Finally, what would you tell young professionals in the supply chain industry?

 

Supply chain is a great career choice.  Companies are continuing to place increasing value on the contribution that can be made by supply chain professionals.  The variety of supply chain roles makes it a great choice for professionals with differing skill sets.  The best advice I can give to young professionals is to focus on their company’s needs; find the best way to positively impact company results.  Always be selfless about putting the company’s needs first and foremost – always looking for a way to have an impact.  Have an informed point of view - have facts and information to defend your perspective.  Continually develop your relationship skills to increase your influence to drive the right decisions at your company.  You will be recognized as a valued contributor.

 

Thank you so much to Jill for taking time to answer these questions. I hope my readers found this interview as interesting and insightful as I did. If you did, let me know and I will work to incorporate more interviews into the blog.