Strategic Partnerships Pay Dividends

Maximizing uptime with partnerships


“I’m over maintenance at this terminal (Pleasant Prairie), and we have 250 trailers and 50 to 70 power units here at any given time. I knew not having a relationship with a strong dealership in our area hurt us.”

He says the distance of their current suppliers at the time was having a negative impact on operations, but there were other factors as well, including parts availability and inventory.

So when JX came to call the next time, the discussion went beyond truck sales to focus on all areas of after-sale support - parts, service, warranty and roadside.

“We listened closely to what Quality Carriers required and it was clear, like with many customers, it’s what happens after the truck sale that is the most important element,” says Kurt Jorgensen, JX Enterprises’ vice president of sales. “We worked to put together a package that included comprehensive support, around the clock.

The approach worked, but more importantly, it continues to work because the expectations and requirements continue to be met.

SKILLED TECHNICIANS

One of the advantages that helped JX Peterbilt win and capture the business was, according to the dealership’s Kranzusch, factory-trained technicians that are tuned into industry trends and regularly participate in ongoing training offered from suppliers and through other industry resources.

“The importance of a well-trained, well-informed technician can not be overstated,” he says. “Truck technologies are always advancing and vehicle systems are always growing in sophistication.

“You can never stop learning in this industry. If you want to serve customers to the best of your abilities, you need to stay current.”

It can be a competitive differentiator that determines where customers go for their aftermarket needs.

Having skilled technicians is a tremendous advantage for any dealership or repair operation, maintains Mueller. When a truck gets to a facility, its technicians “need to be knowledgeable and have the skills, abilities and credibility though training and re-certification of their brands that allow them to properly diagnose a truck and give me accurate information.”

He say JX Peterbilt’s service advisors are able to tell him, based on the dealership’s technicians’ experience and ability, exactly how long that truck will be down. “When you factor in having the right parts available or being able to get them, I’m able to get an accurate time of when that truck is going to be back up and they stick to it.”

ASSESSMENT OF DOWNTIME

An accurate assessment of downtime complements Quality Carriers’ complex and technology-driven approach to its logistics management. Mueller says each truck - regardless of where it is in North America, is monitored electronically. With a few keystrokes, he can check any unit’s location, movement, mileage, fault codes and failures.

“We can access all of this information, give it to the dealership and know exactly when that truck needs to be scheduled and what needs to be done with it,” he says. “Much of that same information is also accessed by the JX Peterbilt service department, which proactively recommends maintenance or repairs.”

The dealership’s ability to assist in the monitoring of mileage and performance, coupled by in-depth knowledge of the fleet’s service history, also helps minimize downtime through failure trend analysis and predictive replacement strategies.

“Anticipating trend failures is another great help,” Mueller says. “That is a tremendous management advantage because those breakdowns on the highway were very costly.”

WARRANTY ADMINISTRATION

The dealership’s willingness to work with Mueller on warranty administration was another selling point. Just as trucks and components grow more complex, often, so do the warranties attached to them.

Mueller says simply keeping up with warranty terms and administering warranty claims can quickly turn into a full-time job. With the dealership handling warranty matters there is one less thing to worry about.

By becoming a one-stop source that offered multiple solutions, JX Peterbilt helped both Mueller and his Quality Carriers make the most of their time.

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