Between the vans and the Chevy Colorado and the GMC Canyon midsize pick-up trucks at the GM plant in Wentzville, there are 5,000 unique vehicle parts that need to be installed.
"My team's responsibility is to deliver the right part at the right place at the right time," explains Mark Rhoades, the Supply Chain area manager at the GM plant.
Steve Baker worked in the restaurant industry for years before working as a stock keeper here in the supply chain sector at the Wentzville plant. Even now—he's still a chef of sorts. Arranging all of the ingredients for each vehicle in a yellow toolbox-shaped container called a kit.
Each kit has hundreds of tubes, vents, buttons, and anything and everything that needs to be installed in a van or truck by hand.
The kits are loaded onto a little truck called a "tugger"—and the right parts can then meet up with the right vehicle at the right time.
And where do all of these little parts come from?
The Wentzville plant has 600 suppliers. One-hundred-fifty rail cars filled with parts are unloaded every week to feed the production line. Lots of big rigs are unloaded too---which is good news for local trucking companies---and even better news for all of GM's in-state suppliers.
"We have several in Missouri. We have some in Columbia, we have some in the southern part of the state," Rhoades explains.
Missouri companies supply 52 of the parts that go into the Chevy Colorado, explains GM spokesperson Tom Brune.
Which means even if you don't work here at the GM plant in Wentzville--or even know anybody who does.
When all these little parts come together in our area to create the #1 truck in the America--it's a recipe for success for all of us.