We have written a number of times about how under-emphasized both service management and service parts planning in particular is and continues to be in companies. However, what surprised us to an equal degree was a recent search for books on this topic. We stopped by Amazon.com and performed a search for “service parts planning” and received this result.
What it Means
For those that do not search Amazon.com very frequently, we can tell you how unusual this result is. By the third result, we are already getting into books that are so old or out of print, that there is no image posted. Also notice that this third listing has nothing at all to do with service parts, but came into the results in any case because there are so few books on this topic. One of the books is completely dedicated to service parts planning in SAP. However, what if you are a company that does not use SAP? This book will probably not cover what you need then. The second book is related to algorithms for service parts supply chain. This would probably answer a few questions for the technically inclined, but it can not be considered a book for business people trying to understand service parts planning and does not cover the topic generally. If we change the search to “spare parts planning” we get similar results, so the terminology used does not change the results much.
You can do the search yourself and see the full results. However, of the next few pages of results, we only found the following book to be applicable.
And this is not a book specialized on service parts planning per say, but simply service parts. This book covers service parts generally, but does allocate chapters to things like forecasting and inventory management for service parts.
Best Books and Articles
This is a listing of the top books and articles in the field. The list can certainly grow.
Analysis and Algorithms for Service Parts Supply Chains – John A. Muckstadt – http://www.amazon.com/Analysis-Algorithms-Operations-Financial-Engineering/dp/0387227156/ref=sr11/105-0952385-1563663?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1185121839&sr=1-1
Service Parts Planning with mySAP SCM: Processes, Structures, and Functions – Jörg T. Dickersbach – http://www.amazon.com/Service-Parts-Planning-mySAP-SCM/dp/3540326502/ref=sr11/105-0952385-1563663?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1185125847&sr=8-1
- Winning in the Aftermarket – HBR June 1006 – Cohen, Agrawal, Agrawal
How are the next generation of service parts planners and consultants to be trained if there is not literature commonly available on the topic? Our conclusion is that considering the size of the service market there could be more material. Secondly, in order to advance the field, its important that more material be published.