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"Our People are our Best Part" and they are Helping America Weather this Storm

By Tom Greco

Years ago, Advance Auto Parts began using the tagline: “The Best Part is our People.” While the wording has evolved a bit over the years, the sentiment behind the statement has never meant more than it does today. At Advance, “Our People are our Best Part,” and nothing is more important than the health and safety of our Team Members.

Over the last several weeks, as the COVID-19 pandemic has continued to grip the nation and the world, we have taken many proactive steps to safeguard our Team Members and customers. From increasing sanitation and social distancing at our stores, to rapidly expanding programs like Same Day and Curbside Delivery, to creating tools like MotoVisuals so mechanics can explain complicated repairs virtually, the way we do business is changing as we confront coronavirus. You can read more about our efforts in my last blog post titled “How Advance Auto Parts is Helping Others in these Uncertain Times.”

Behind the scenes, the rest of our business is also adapting to a “new normal.” For example, the way we procure parts and supplies, particularly those from suppliers outside the U.S., is taking on new levels of complexity. This includes sourcing of cleaning supplies, which are becoming increasingly scarce. Our procurement teams have been working night and day to find solutions to these challenges.

At our distribution centers across the country, our Team Members process tens of thousands of individual parts each day as they fill orders and manage returns. These Team Members are also adjusting to new processes, including the need for increased sanitation of work areas, additional breaks for handwashing and process changes that allow for social distancing.

I’m grateful to these thousands of incredible Team Members who are part of our supply chain and inventory teams for the work they are doing to keep up with these changes and ensure we keep the country moving and our people safe. Thanks to them, we have seen minimal disruptions in the procurement of parts and supplies from our vendor partners.

Implementing new ways of working and dealing with adversity is never easy, and I am proud of our Team Members who continue to meet the challenge and rise to the occasion. Many are not just adhering to our new guidelines, they are speaking up and making recommendations for improvements. To me, this is what makes Advance a special place to work – the ingenuity of our people and their eagerness to move the business forward. Our Team Members make us better every day. And that’s why we prioritize our people.

No one really knows how long this pandemic will last or how it will continue to unfold. What we do know is that staying focused on proactive measures to safeguard our Team Members and Customers will help us weather this storm. By looking out for each other, and continually demonstrating care and compassion in all our interactions, I know we will get through this incredibly challenging time. And once it’s over, we will be stronger than ever.

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