The term “partnership” may have been flogged to death in a business context, but what it actually means is today more important than ever: a close, trusting relationship creates great benefits for both sides.
The railway construction industry, like other industries, is currently in a particularly intensive process of change to increasing digitalisation. Many familiar processes are changing very rapidly and radically. New technological solutions enable operating companies and service providers to assess the current condition of a machine and to make forecasts of maintenance requirements to a degree not previously possible.
Due to these new possibilities, it is more important than ever that operating companies and service providers cooperate in close partnership.
Most operating companies have workshops where small repairs and maintenance work can be carried out. It does not make economic and logistic sense for these companies to maintain a larger workshop. Major work required is carried out by a service partner, such as Deutsche Plasser. We look after planning and implementation of maintenance work in close cooperation with the operating company. This ranges from workshop planning via the supply of spare and wear parts to the deployment of service engineers.
Few operating companies have a large workshop where they can carry out any necessary maintenance work largely independently. However, they, too, benefit from cooperation with a service company. Our experienced service engineers can help with the assessment of the current and future condition of a machine and give recommendations on the work to be carried out. If required, we can look after the timely provision of the spare and wear parts needed.
A company such as Deutsche Plasser is an important partner for every company operating Plasser & Theurer machines. We have decades of experience in servicing railway construction machines. During these years we have had many interesting experiences and mastered many challenges together with our customers.
Careful documentation and analysis of problems which have occurred, but in particular the solutions, have created a wealth of experience which is without equal. Our staff are proven experts in their fields and, due to the closeness of our company to the manufacturer Plasser & Theurer, know every machine for which we are responsible very well.
This closeness places us in a unique position: our staff are already involved in the manufacture of machines built in Linz and intended for our market. They participate directly in the manufacture and acceptance of the machine and thus know it particularly well. This knowledge is often enhanced by taking part in the first few deployments of the machine. If problems occur during the life of the machine, they can be detected very quickly and removed with great expertise.
Furthermore, due to the close cooperation with Plasser & Theurer, we are always up to date with regard to new technologies and equipment. This means that we can always give the best possible advice to our customers and, for example by referring to available updates, utilise synergies as part of maintenance measures.
Of course, this is the easier for us, the more information the operating companies share with us. The better we can understand their situation and their challenges, the better we can successfully assist them.
“We obviously know the machines of our customers very well, but we are not present during their daily use. The more operating companies tell us about a machine, the more we can help them to ensure the best possible availability of the machine”, says Robert Riquel Stadtlander, Sales Manager at Deutsche Plasser.
Predictive maintenance is a particularly important topic in this context. Deutsche Plasser, in cooperation with an analysis company such as P&T Connected, can forecast the development of the machine condition. From that we can derive clear recommendations for any maintenance measures. We obviously only have access to this data if this is requested by the operator.
Deutsche Plasser professes a close partnership with its customers and wishes to strengthen it by offering new services. A particularly important instrument is the 24/7 service which we presented in the issue 10 of DP Update.
Our new fixed prices are another building block. Furthermore, we have been offering four variants for the maintenance of tamping units for a while. Each variant has a clearly defined service scope and is available at a particularly attractive price. The options range from a spare parts kit or a general overhaul through to a new tamping unit.
All service offers have in common that they provide a very attractive price due to standardisation of the services offered. Each scope of service is based on decades of experience and provides a comprehensive and versatile maintenance offer across the four variants.
The following applies to all offers: the more we know about the machines of our customers and their challenges in daily work, the better we can advise them; and the better we can develop current and future service variants.
This has clear advantages for our customers. They benefit from our experience gained over many decades in servicing railway construction machines and from our vast machine knowledge because of our closeness to the manufacturer.
By setting fixed prices based on a specific service scope, we contribute to high certainty in financial planning. Moreover, maintenance work can be carried out faster than before. Previously, there was an initial assessment of the components followed by a quotation, but now the work can start immediately on arrival of the components. The spare parts required are procured in a timely manner and are immediately available. In addition to certainty in financial planning, this means faster execution of the maintenance work and thus greater availability of the machine.
Let us have a close partnership and shape it in such a way that it benefits both partners. We will involve you even more closely in future and provide you promptly with important information, as we did recently with our announcement regarding the Automatic Guidance Computer (ALC). Talk to us and let us know what challenges your company faces and how we can support you. If you give us access to your machine data, we can provide individual maintenance recommendations tailored to each machine and support you with great competence and commitment in their implementation. The closer we cooperate, the greater is the planning certainty for both sides.
“The closer we cooperate with our customers, the greater is the planning certainty for both sides.”
Robert Riquel Stadtlander