Backstage at Louwman Exclusive –Patrick van Doorn
Patrick van Doorn is Parts Advisor for McLaren, Bentley and Rolls-Royce. Completely different brands and because of that no day is the same. Sometimes I am busy sorting out parts for a Rolls-Royce from the 30's for half a day. That is quite something else than to take a set of brake pads of a McLaren out of the warehouse. Having a cup of coffee in the warehouse Patrick talks about the pleasure in his work and why he hasn't become a technician.
Here you have an interesting combination of English brands in your package!
From the beginning I had Rolls-Royce and Bentley. When Louwman Exclusive took over Hessing I kept these brands in my portfolio. I also set up the stock system as well as the physical stacks since the start of McLaren at Louwman Exclusive in 2014. That was an interesting task. At the start there only was one model but now it is a whole range. For each model there are different parts. In the meantime it has become quite a warehouse.
How do you determine which parts you keep in stock?
That differs per brand. There is a list of required parts which the factory prescribes us. These parts have to be in stock all the time. Mostly these are service parts like filters, brake pads, etc. Moreover I myself decide what we keep in stock. Each model has its own point of attention. For instance for McLaren I keep many bumpers and front windows in stock.
People often ask me why I keep these. The only reason is service. If somebody has a broken front window or has hit a pole I immediately have that part available. The bumper can be painted in the right colour straight away and the customer can drive away as soon as possible. So for the customer this saves time.
Can you always deliver any part?
In principle, yes. Of course we have not everything in stock but for certain brands we do 24-hours delivery and for others it will take a little longer. It differs per model. There are Bentley’s and Rolls-Royce’s driving around which are 60 or 70 years old and for these you really have to dig into the books to check which part you will need.
Sometimes even the factory doesn’t have the right parts anymore so then you have to mobilise your network in England. We are always looking for the original parts but after consultation with the customer we are able to come up at the after-market or choose for second-hand parts if the customer chooses to do so. These are time-consuming jobs but it also makes my work so interesting.
As a young child was it your dream to work with cars?
I always thought cars were interesting and I was quite young when I had to choose a direction at school. Together with a couple of friends I made the choice for automotive technology. I have been educated as second cartechnician. My first job was as a truck technician. After I had been working a couple of years I found out that I was more interested in the commercial aspects of a car company. I liked to work more with my head instead of my hands. A vacancy came up for a warehouse employee at Audi and Volkswagen and I was accepted. My technical background was very useful. Customers often have technical questions and I can answer them.
What do you like most about your work as Parts Advisor?
The customer contact and the diversity of the job. Each day is different. You delve into different things. Our job takes more time than in an average warehouse and that makes it more interesting. Of course that has to do with the brands. I learned to appreciate Bentley and Rolls-Royce and now also McLaren. You can see how a brand develops and comes to life more and more. McLaren is a fantastic drivers car and a brand with a prosperous future. It is very nice to be a part of that.
Parts Advisor / Employed since: 2012 / Age: 38 / Children: 2 sons / What keeps him busy outside work: Patrick keeps himself busy with a.o. Basketball, mountain biking, fitness