American Tire Distributors Inc. (ATD) has won three Blue Diamond Awards from the Charlotte Area Technology Collaborative (CATC). The awards recognize ATD’s efforts in creating business value in the deployment and use of information technology systems and making major contributions to the development and recruitment of IT talent to the Charlotte area.
For over two decades, the Blue Diamond Awards have recognized the innovation in both creation and use of information technology that is taking place in Charlotte as the region becomes a national hub for industry and finance. Originally bestowed by the Charlotte Chamber, the CATC took over as the presenting organization in 2015, now bestowing awards that recognize outstanding students, innovators, entrepreneurs, and non-profits as well as businesses.
ATD received two awards for creating business impact. ATD received the first Business Impact Award for the creation of a tool developed by ATD’s Advanced Analytics Center of Excellence (AACoE) to help tire dealers maximize their profits.
"When I first came to ATD, we were sitting on 80 years of industry knowledge and information that had never been fully tapped,” says Tim Eisenmann, chief analytics officer and senior vice president of advanced analytics at ATD. “What we created, literally from scratch and in a very short period of time, was a tool to tap that vast body of information and put it to work for our customers, helping them operate more profitably and see that we were focused on their success, and in the process deepen the trust between us and our customers.”
For its second Business Impact Award, ATD was lauded for the creation of a technology solution for its customers that was designed to simplify, automate and add complete transparency to the order placement and fulfilment process. ATD understood that its customers appreciated having just-in-time inventory management, but that often there were high-urgency orders that needed to be tracked in real-time.
Using a combination of technologies, ATD created a solution that make the entire distribution process transparent to users. The CATC judges took note that these innovations collectively brought the entire replacement tire industry into the 21st century and acknowledged the immense challenges facing companies attempting to change the way traditional industries conduct business.
Winning with People
For the Blue Diamond Award for Human Capital, ATD was honored for the creation of a work environment that was sufficiently challenging and innovative that the company was able to attract over a dozen data scientists to Charlotte in a remarkably short period of time. In the process the company is not only raising the talent bar for the industry and helping to raise the profile of the Charlotte as a technology hub, it is also working to create the nucleus of a new analytics community in the Charlotte area with a series of community initiatives:
Holding the “Reinvent the Wheel” hackathon;
Launching the “Medium” blog in November 2018;
Launched an internship collaboration with the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in the fall of 2018
Hosting the first Data Driven Charlotte mixer at ATD (October 2018); and
Active participation in various area speaking engagements.
“What’s most gratifying about these awards is that they focus not on our investments in technology, which have been substantial, but the results those investments delivered to our customers, our partners, our people, and the business as a whole,” says Stuart Schuette, ATD’s president and chief executive officer. “For ATD, transforming through technology has always been about unlocking the untapped value in this business for the benefit of everyone – from the manufacturer to the consumer – and that capability lies at the heart of the value we deliver to this industry.”
The Blue Diamond Awards were given out at a function at Founders’ Hall in Charlotte. Tim Eisenmann and Jaimie Bass accepted the award on behalf of ATD.