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Technology Newsmaker Q&A Sheila Andrews

Wednesday, November 8, 2017 - 08:00
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In August, the Auto Care Association and the Heavy Duty Distribution Association announced that work was commencing on the creation of product data standards for the heavy duty aftermarket, which would mirror established PIES standard.

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Aftermarket Business World spoke with Sheila Andrews, director of heavy duty programs at the Auto Care Association, about the initiative.

Why has it taken longer to launch product data standards in the heavy duty segment?

It was a matter of member companies within the HD industry coming together and saying, ‘It’s time for us to have this developed because we’ve already seen the efficiencies it created in one sector of the independent aftermarket, and we should be able to create those same efficiencies in the HD sector.’

What do you expect will be some of the differences between the HD standards and existing product data standards?

Anyone who is familiar with using the existing standards will see the format and be very familiar with it. We are not a creating a new version of the existing ACES and PIES standards. It truly is an expansion of those existing standards to encompass a class of vehicles that would like to see more robust data.

We recognize the differences that exist between describing light duty systems, components and attributes, and the differences that exist for the commercial vehicle space. We are doing due diligence to incorporate those differences within the existing structure and to be able to provide robust, accurate data for commercial vehicle parts.

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What are some challenges to standards adoption in the HD segment?

I don’t expect any particular challenges in adoption or roll out that are any different from the original standards when we first produced ACES and PIES.

We will be doing a lot of industry outreach both on the data producer and data receiver sides, and even the fleet side. We will be doing that outreach to get industry adoption and involvement in the creation of the standards.

So to the extent that we can bring in a large portion of the players within the HD aftermarket, that will alleviate any barriers to adoption. We’re looking to very much involve the entire supply chain of the HD aftermarket in the creation, roll out and adoption of the standards.

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