Terex MP launched its Digital Solutions business unit in July 2021, the culmination of a sustained and savvy embrace of the world’s new digital age and the efficiency and productivity gains it can bring for crushing and screening equipment customers.
A business segment of the U.S.-headquartered Terex Corporation, Dungannon, Northern Ireland-based Terex MP is making its Digital Solutions offer fully available to its dealers and customers across 12 of its brands: Powerscreen, Terex Finlay, EvoQuip, MDS International, ProStack, Terex Minerals Processing Systems (Terex MPS), Terex Washing Systems, Terex Ecotec, CBI, Fuchs, Franna Pick and Carry Cranes and Terex Tower and Rough Terrain Cranes.
Crucially, as Marco Piovano, director of Terex MP Digital Solutions, explains, the new Digital Solutions business unit brings all Terex MP’s customer-facing digital capabilities under a single focused team. Piovano says Digital Solutions will allow Terex MP to deploy its digital tools systematically to ensure that its channel partners and end-users are getting world-class service when using Terex MP brand machines. Piovano stresses that its launch also enables Terex MP to press on with determining and developing new digital tools to help meet evolving customer needs.
“Today Digital Solutions includes the telematics platforms for our machines, which provide real-time performance data and assist with predictive maintenance. There is also the online parts inventory management tool for our dealers, which integrates with Terex systems to support their and their customers’ forecasting and planning process,” says Piovano. “It helps dealers understand what parts need to be stocked in their warehouses and allows parts replenishment in a few [mouse button] clicks. It also allows for quick checks on inventory levels across many Terex MP dealer warehouse sites, creating a community of dealers and a common customer service platform.”
Speaking to Aggregates Business in September 2021, Piovano says this autumn is seeing the global rollout of Remote Servicing: a wearable headset that allows Terex MP technicians and dealer technicians to remotely assist customers with repair and maintenance tasks.
Remote Servicing has been a great success in supporting Powerscreen crushing and screening equipment customers in the United States since 2018.
“Technical information can be shown on the lens of the headset to help with the task at hand. It allows real-time images and information to be exchanged between the individual working on the crusher and screener and Terex MP or dealer technicians. It is like using Mission Impossible glasses! The technology is hands-free, making it much safer to use when repairing or servicing the machine.”
Part of the Blue Group, a specialist provider of material processing and handling equipment into the quarrying & demolition, recycling, scrap, ports and energy segments throughout the UK and Ireland, Warrington, Cheshire-headquartered Blue Spares is a prominent Terex MP crushing and screening equipment dealer fully utilising Terex MP’s new technologies to enhance customer operations.
Blue Spares managing director Ian Webber says technological innovation like Remote Servicing will make it easier for his team to work with customers. “I think it makes it easier to do business with us, and that is our whole mantra. We are, of course, evolving but we try to keep things as simple as possible. As soon as you start getting complicated, you lose people. We are always looking at ways to grow our business and have a real obligation to our customers, who have a lot going on and need things done as easily as possible.
“On the digital solutions side, we’ve improved our internal processes by plugging ourselves into the CDI [Connected Dealer Inventory) system work by Terex MP. We’ve got much better visibility of the availability of critical parts. We hold multi-million pounds worth of parts across our UK sites to support our customers, and CDI also gives us real-time information about parts availability at the Terex Dungannon Business Park parts facility and dealer sites.”
Webber gives a good recent example of how dealers can benefit from Terex MP Digital Solutions. “One of our UK scrap material business customers urgently needed a replacement motor for their Fuchs material handler which had broken down. We didn’t have it at our UK sites, and Terex MP didn’t have it at the Dungannon parts facility. But thanks to the Digital Solutions business, we were quickly able to source and buy the motor from a Terex MP dealer in Poland. It was then rapidly shipped to the customer, minimising their machine downtime. The customer did not know or care where the motor came from. They just wanted it as soon as possible.”
Webber believes that the COVID-19 pandemic-induced disruption in the business world since the first quarter of 2020 has sped up the adoption of digital solutions by industry, including the crushing and screening business.
“If you look at our industry, a lot of our owner-operator customers are getting ready to hang their toolboxes up. There is a younger generation coming in who will have a different expectation of how to work with our dealers. A lot of them won’t have time to pick up the phone and talk to a guy in an office about a part and their availability.
“So, what we are working on with Terex MP is the creation of a portal. It will mean that in the future, a Blue Spares customer can log on and see what machines they are running, their telematics performance, when their equipment warranties are going to run out, and when their machine servicing is due. It would show how much they are spending with Blue Parts, what invoices are still to be paid, and their queries. That’s a huge amount of easily available information.
“The portal will also allow customers to order some non-complex replacement parts, perhaps on their iPad at 9 pm on a weekday night, as they didn’t have time to do it earlier that day. This makes it even easier to do business with us.”
Webber says the Terex MP dealer and customer portal is earmarked to go live initially with Blue Spares and wider Blue Group key account customers at some stage in the first half of next year. It will follow the earmarked launch of the MyTerex Customer Fleet telematics mobile phone app in Q4 2021. The app will give customers easy access to key equipment performance data, such as production volume, fuel use and idling time, along with repair and servicing notifications. For Webber, another big advantage of Blue Spares’ close working relationship with Terex MP’s Digital Solutions business unit is in the company’s customer fleet management work.
“Our customers have businesses to run, and operating and maintaining some of their crushing and screening machines is just a small part of what their day job looks like. We can say, ‘Let us look after that for you,’ and take the hassle away. It is another example of using digital solutions to make business as easy as possible for our customers.”
Webber says that Blue Parts’ ability to digitally access wider Blue Group, Terex MP and fellow dealers’ parts warehouse inventories has also made it easier to keep its Warrington HQ and Blue Scotland parts facilities stocked with the parts required to meet the maintenance needs of Scottish customers working with Terex MP equipment.
Asked about what happens if Blue Parts’ digital access to Terex MP’s and fellow dealers’ inventory data was unavailable due to a system glitch, Webber says: “We run two systems – the CDI system recommendation and our SAP inventory management system. So, if we don’t get the CDI system recommendation on parts replacement availability, we revert to what our SAP system says. We review the SAP system on a weekly basis anyway.”
I’m curious to know how easy it was for Blue Spares to switch to a more comprehensive digital approach to its day-to-day business. “The buy-in from our team has been easier than I thought. The team is very loyal, and lots of the guys in senior positions have been with us for a long time. Our sales director has got 15 years’ service, and our procurement manager has also been with us for 15 years. I think it helped that we got the staff that were going to be involved in this involved in the very early stages. They were part of the decision-making process. Even Marco [Piovano] went back to his team saying, ‘That’s a really good input’.”
“I was coming from another industry and was used to creating something very much from just an OEM [original equipment manufacturer] perspective, so not having to convince dealers about this made life a lot easier in creating the Digital Solutions business unit,” adds Piovano.
Piovano says Terex Corporation is committed to significant multi-million euro long-term investment in Digital Solutions R&D, emphasising its importance. “A lot of OEMs are making digital solutions on their own without looking at how they integrate with dealers and customers’ solutions. This can lead to business process blocks, making it harder for dealers and customers. We are spending a lot of time and money making sure our processes are fully end-to-end integrated.”
Webber says that Blue Spares’ full use of the new Terex MP Digital Solutions business unit’s offer, coupled with an uplift in UK crusher and screener market demand, had led to the company taking on a few more sales staff. “You can speculate on which single factor is having the biggest impact, but we are continuing to grow as a company. I think the use of digital solutions generally will help the crushing and screening industry going forward. Machine uptime will be improved, and work will be done more efficiently, with more projects completed ahead of time.
“There’s also a link between digital solutions and green credentials. If we and our customers can work more efficiently, we will also be working more sustainably. For example, if we save the need for a couple of parts container ships to set sail from different part of the world, including India and China, that’s a good thing for the environment.”
Piovano adds: “I think in the future there will be even greater visibility of machine data, and a shift in workforce skills, with people able to do more in any given period of time. If customers are more efficient and profitable, we will all have opportunities to grow.”
Find out more: https://www.terex.com/washing/en/m1700x-washing-screener