“When customers invest in our products they do so with peace of mind, resting assured in the knowledge that they can count on the support of a competent team throughout their product’s life cycle.”
This is Epiroc after-market,” says Floris Timmers, regional business line manager Mining & Rock Excavation Services (MRS).
This article first appeared in Mining Review Africa Issue 9 2018
Epiroc’s after-market division is responsible for all capital ranges across all divisions, covering eleven product lines including rock-drills and rotation units through to drilling (pit viper, FlexiROC, SmartROC) and mining machines (Simba, Scooptram, Boomer).
The extensive after-market solution which comprises specialist tooling and tool kits, after-sales service, rebuild, technology, telematics, and training, is delivered to customers and end-users in South Africa as well as direct neighbouring countries.
Timmers notes two factors that differentiate Epiroc’s after-market service – their re-manufacturing capabilities and their innovative after-market triad, a combination, he says, that takes Epiroc to a whole new level in the after-market space.
“We do full machine re-manufacture back to full life in accordance with OEM specifications at our Jet Park facility in Gauteng. As the machines and parts are rebuilt back to new, we offer warranties on our workmanship and premium OEM parts just like you would get on brand new machines.”
The second differentiating factor is the after-market triad which comprises stock holding, competent technicians and specialised tooling.
“Our three-pronged approach is geared to ensure that customers and end-users get the maximum service out of their machines and equipment,” states Timmers, adding,“We put all this into a highly competitive package for our customers.”
Stock holding, the first of this value add package, is directly linked to building customer relationships.
“This is a big part of after-market because we must be familiar with the customer’s business and exact requirements to enable us to know what stock as well as in what quantities to carry. Going beyond that, we must get the parts out quickly to maximise uptime for increased productivity and ultimately profitability for the customer.”
Timmers adds that customers do not have the hassle of finding storage space and they don’t pay for stock lying on the shelves.
“They only pay for stock when they need the stock.”
Next in Epiroc’s after-market trio is the team highly skilled technicians who deliver expert, round the clock, 24/7 support.
Timmers explains that the technicians receive regular training to stay up to date on all products and arming them with the necessary maintenance, service and repair expertise.
Completing the trio is specialised tooling designed by Epiroc.
“No matter how good the product or how qualified the technicians, the use of correct tooling when servicing or repairing equipment is just as essential in ensuring optimum and reliable machine performance.”
Not all customers make use of Epiroc’s full after-market offering which Timmers admits presents a challenge.
“Customers who only buy parts from us don’t know when service is required on their machines or equipment. Our package removes the headache in the after-sales service space and we strongly encourage customers to make use of our service contract; it is an investment that delivers significant savings over the life span of the equipment.”
“In our endeavour to assist customers in extending the service life of their capital equipment and keep operational costs as low as possible, we recently introduced CERTIQ.”
Timmers explains that this web-based solution remotely monitors machine activity providing insight into operator activities and productivity as well as information on the condition of the machine.
Using a mobile device (cell phone, laptop, tablet or i-PAD), customers can remotely log into their fleet to see if the machines are productive, if they are running or drilling, how many metres down they have drilled as well as their fuel consumption.
CERTIQ also checks machine health and alerts the customer if there is a problem with the machine such as overheating for example and whether the operator has switched the machine off.
“CERTIQ basically extends what the operator is seeing,” notes Timmers.
CERTIQ is currently available on all new Epiroc product lines but is limited to specific models and can also be retrofitted, requiring a simple fitment of hardware on the machine.
“CERTIQ is an extension of our after-market service offering and definitely provides cost saving benefits to those customers who are not using our complete service package.”
As no service is complete without training, it is an area that receives a lot of attention from Epiroc.
“We regard training as a value adding product to our customers. Appropriate training ensures the correct use of the machine which will deliver long life for lowest overall total cost of ownership and rapid return on investment.”
Timmers explains the majority of the training is done at the customer’s site both in South Africa and in the neighbouring territories by fourteen highly trained professionals all with different fields of expertise.
These trainers, together with Epiroc technicians, receive training both locally and overseas from Swedish experts.
“Our OEM rebuild and stock holding capabilities along with our skilled technicians, specialised tooling, training and digital platform sum up our after-market strengths.
“Our proactive approach to our after-market services positions as a solid partner to the Southern African mining, infrastructure and natural resource sectors.
“We want to assure our customers that when it comes to service, we have their back so that they can focus on their core business,” concludes Timmers.